Apple Folds in Mac OS 9 Group

In another sign that Mac OS 9's day is done, Apple is passing control of its engineering to the Mac OS X team.

In yet another sign that Apple Computer Inc. is winding down its efforts to maintain the classic Mac OS 9 to concentrate on Mac OS X, the company last week quietly reorganized its OS development operation.

According to sources, Apple Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Avadis Tevanian on Friday announced the departure of Steven Glass, longtime Mac OS developer and vice president of the Cupertino, Calif., companys Mac OS Engineering group. Sources said Glass, who reported directly to Tevanian, will take a new position at Apples PowerSchool division. Created by Apples March 2001 acquisition of PowerSchool, the group provides Web-based student information systems for K-12 schools and school districts.

Glass has been involved with Apple OS development for more than 15 years; he was on the team that created the Apple IIGS, which was introduced in September 1986.

Meanwhile, the Mac OS 9 engineering team (as well as the team responsible for international OS versions and text rendering) will move under Platform Technologies, the group headed by Bertrand Serlet. That group is primarily responsible for development of the Unix-based Mac OS X. Tevanian reportedly told staffers that Apple is continuing to search for a new manager for Mac OS X.

Serlet also reports directly to Tevanian. He joined Apple alongside Tevanian as part of Apples December 1996 acquisition of NeXT Software Inc., whose OpenStep OS formed the foundation of Mac OS X.

In addition, Mac OS quality assurance—formerly a separate group within Serlets Platform Technologies group—will be moved under software engineering operations.

According to sources, the reorganization does not significantly reduce the number of staffers involved in Apples OS efforts; some departing employees have not been replaced, and a number of former Mac OS 9 developers have moved to Marklar, the companys Mac OS X-on-x86 project.

Apple representatives did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Sources said the move is Apples latest in an ongoing effort to close the book on Mac OS 9. At last weeks Apple Expo in Paris, CEO Steve Jobs confirmed an August report in eWEEK that as of January, all new Mac models will boot into Mac OS X only.

At Mays Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, Calif., Jobs theatrically eulogized Mac OS 9, displaying a boxed copy in a coffin while funereal music blared from speakers. Mac OS 9 "isnt dead for our customers yet," he told assembled software and hardware developers, "but its dead to you."

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