ADC Select

Apple reminded me this week that my ADC Select membership is about to expire, and suggested that I renew my membership so I can continue to take advantage of all the benefits it offers.

I'm not sure I'm going to, though. While the hardware discount was nice (hello, MacBook!), and access to the Leopard Early Start Kit was incredibly useful, I didn't take advantage of any of the other benefits (like the technical support incidents). Plus, now that Leopard will be in everyone's hands tomorrow, the major benefit (pre-release software) disappears (at least until Apple announces 10.6, which won't be until WWDC 2008 at the earliest).

Also, like other Mac developers, I'm annoyed that we weren't given access to the final version of Leopard before it was released. While I'm fairly confident both Geekbench and Wiinote will work with the final version of Leopard, I've only been able to test them with the last pre-release version of Leopard. It's entirely possible that either one (or both) will not work with the final version of Leopard.

I'd be less annoyed if Apple didn't give anyone access to Leopard before it was released, but a number of journalists have access to the final build of Leopard. Plus, the final build is all over the internet. I could download it from BitTorrent or Usenet and while I don't think that would be morally wrong (I've paid for a copy with my ADC membership), it's certainly legally wrong. So why's Apple not giving everyone with the Leopard Early Start Kit early access to the final build? I can't figure it out.

Compare Apple with Microsoft; developers with an MSDN subscription received copies of Windows Vista well before it was released to the general public, giving the developers a chance to hammer out any final compatibility issues before consumers encountered them.

So, will I renew my ADC Select membership? Probably not. There's not a lot of value in it right now for me, and I'm kind of annoyed that Apple treats me (and other developers) as necessary evils rather than trusted partners.

John Poole is the founder of Primate Labs and lives in Toronto, Ontario with his wife Deborah. You can find John on Twitter or .