As of 1 March, 2012, all new apps/updates submitted to the Mac App Store will be forced to implement a security feature called sandboxing. In brief, sandboxing limits the scope of each application by restricting how much of your system that app has access to. Developers will have to go through Apple and request specific entitlements in order to receive permission to stretch the limits a little further and give their apps access to certain information.
The benefit here is obvious, your system will be much safer given the restricted access that apps will have. The downside though is a big one for seasoned Mac users and developers of particularly powerful utilities as this restriction has serious potential to limit features. As Techworld.com reports, Alfred’s developers have hesitated to submit the Alfred Powerpack to the Mac App Store for this very reason.
Back in June, I wrote and published an article titled“1984 and the Future of Mac Software” containing a fairly gloomy outlook on the future of the Mac should it continue down its current road towards heavier developer regulation. It seems fairly obvious that Apple wants control over every aspect of what does and doesn’t make its way onto your Mac. That’s not inherently a bad thing though, iOS serves as a great example of a successful system (that users love) which happens to be very tightly controlled by Apple.
Ultimately, whether or not sandboxing is a good thing is completely up to you. We want to hear what you think. Vote in the poll above and leave a comment explaining your answer.