A Letter From Heidi Roizen:

Dear Developers,

As you can imagine, the level of activity at Apple these days is very high as we continue to prepare for the upcoming Worldwide Developer Conference.

There is some news that I need to share with you now, as an expression of Apple's commitment to open communication: We've stated in the past that it has been our goal to deliver the first widespread developer release of Copland -- what we are calling the Compatibility Edition -- to all attendees at the WWDC. After thorough analysis, it has become apparrent to the engineering team and me that we will not be able to achieve this goal.

The Copland developer release strategy is designed to get the operating system into your hands as early as possible. Driver and extension developers need an early start and application developers need to ensure that current shipping products can be tested for compatibility.

The goals of the Compatibility Edition have been specifically designed to meet these needs. Unfortunately, Apple will not be able to deliver a release that is of high enough quality to achieve these goals by WWDC. Rather than provide a WWDC-specific release that would not allow you to make any progress (and further delay the delivery of a release that would meet your needs), we are focusing all resources on delivering the Compatibility Edition as quickly as we can by mid-year.

We are scrutinizing our plans as you are reading this, so we can provide more specific release information at the conference together with more information about commercial availability, which we expect to now take place in mid-1997.

Despite the fact that we will not supply a take-away copy of Copland at the WWDC, Copland remains a major focus for the technical content at the conference. We will deliver technical documentation to all attendees, and demonstrate Copland to you in many of the sessions. We'll also provide hands-on access to the latest engineering build, so you can experience the system yourself, play with it, test it...or just watch it boot.

Copland remains a high priority for Apple Computer. We are taking steps now to ensure that the product will be aligned with Apple's corporate strategy -- which you can look forward to hearing about in detail at the Worldwide Developer Conference.

I realize that you were expecting to receive the developer release at the conference. I sincerely apologize that we are not able to get you this release as soon as we had hoped. However, in the interest of fulfilling my personal number-one commitment to you, that Apple deals with the developer community "straight up", I believe that this is the right answer for us all. I am confident that you will still receive tremendous value from attending the conference, and that all attendees will receive the CD as soon as it becomes available.

We remain committed to your success as our partners in making the Macintosh platform an ongoing success. I look forward to seeing you on May 13!

Best regards,