This is shaping up to be the autumn of new operating systems. The latest version of Mac OS X, Snow Leopard, ships to customers this Friday. Windows 7, the follow-up to the much-maligned Windows Vista, hits store shelves in late October. Neither operating system will drastically change the way you work.
Windows 7 builds on Windows Vista, smoothing out Vista’s rough spots and bringing a number of new end-user features (such as the reworked taskbar) to the table. Meanwhile, with Snow Leopard, Apple focuses on new under-the-hood technologies that offer subtle refinements and fixes. Still, there is plenty to say about how Apple’s next big cat and Microsoft’s lucky number stack up against each other.