I was greeted with this message today when I was about to publish few more presentations on Slideshare about Knowledge Management. The offending presentation is from 2008. I have around 20 files created in older Keynote versions. They are not the disposable kinds of presentations – you know, the ones that you prepare, project and forget about them. I like to reuse them, show when I’m talking about various subjects contained in them.
How I am supposed to access them now? “save it with Keynote ’09 first”, but how? I don’t have Keynote ’09 any more on my fresh Mavericks install.
And, of course, Keynote ’09 will at some point stop working on new Macs. Apple—and, to a lesser extent, other developers such as Microsoft—cannot be relied upon to support old file formats. The responsibility then falls to the user. If you use an app that creates files in a proprietary format, as soon as a new version comes out you should update all of your documents to the new format. It’s not fun to do this, but there will probably never be an easier time. And it may be a lossy process, so you should also keep the versions in the older format.
Update (2014-03-20): Drew Crawford:
If you are arguing that Apple “should have” implemented this feature, you are also arguing that there are people who want to buy it, and that is a point that is fairly easy to prove.
I do not find this to be a convincing argument. It reminds me of the old joke about how an economist won’t pick up a coin on the ground because, if it were real, someone else would have already found it.
Update (2014-04-14): Thomas Brand:
Even after iWork became a thing, I still find it hard to believe Apple is using its office suite for anything but presentations. Keynote ’09 will stop working on new Macs eventually, and it is hard to ask a company as large as Apple to update every file in its record of knowledge every couple of years.
Update (2014-11-24): The lack of file format compatibility is discussed in Accidental Tech Podcast #90.
Stay up-to-date by subscribing to the Comments RSS Feed for this post.