Mac OS X 10.5 is definitely vaporware, too, albeit a mild variety. Anything announced but not yet finished and released is vaporware. But there are degrees of vaporousness; Mac OS X 10.5 gains points (where more points = less vapory) for the pre-release developer seeds that are available, and for the concrete information about new APIs and developer tools released at WWDC. It loses points for the “secret” as-yet-unspecified features and for the vague “spring 2007” release date. But it’s nowhere near as vapory as the initial release of Mac OS X was back in 1997 through 1999.
Another example: the new version of Windows was really vapory back when it was called Longhorn. It became a lot less vapory when Microsoft changed the name to Vista and cut most of the really cool features (like WinFS). It crossed the line from vaporware to a real product last month when the final versions were released (even though not yet to retail).
★ Monday, 4 December 2006