OK, I’ve been waiting for four long, long years to tell you this. My “Secret Project” at Apple was Marklar aka OS X on x86, finally announced today! I’m not going to say today whether I think it’s a good idea or a bad idea, or what, but I will say this. In 2001, my job at Apple was Program Manager for the Marklar project. When I started, Marklar was relatively moribund, being nursed by a handful of Core OS engineers. Lots and lots of new code had been introduced in OS X from the old Mac side, and new code written, since the last release of Rhapsody worked on Intel.
My job was to get the system working on x86 again and that’s what I did. I traced dependencies like there was no tomorrow. I worked with engineers in a dozen different divisions, each time making first contact with the division manager, then finding just the right person for the job. Each time the same drill: “I’m going to tell you about a project that is Need To Know only. You can’t tell anyone about this, even inside Apple. I’m not even going to tell you everything, just the minimum that you need to know in order for us to continue. If you’re wondering who the hell I am and why you should listen to me, ask you manager who will just tell you to do it.”
I went on leave in fall 2001 after the WTC thing, but by the time I left the Marklar team gave a demo to something like the top 100 managers of the company with a working Marklar system complete with Finder running and a whole range of apps. I kicked ass!
Obviously such an important part of my professional history, but until TODAY I haven’t been allowed to breathe a word. A very SENSITIVE project, of all sensitive projects! But now, tell everyone, tell your friends!