Jonathan Ive has been put in charge of Human Interface at Apple:
Jony Ive will provide leadership and direction for Human Interface (HI) across the company in addition to his role as the leader of Industrial Design. His incredible design aesthetic has been the driving force behind the look and feel of Apple’s products for more than a decade.
(As usual, Gruber has a good writeup of the situation).
I’m personally optimistic about the change; not because Ive was reported to dislike the skeuomorphic design decisions in iOS (and presumably OSX), but because much of Ive’s approach to design is not only focused how something looks, but how something works. As a design director of software, this will be even more important.
People can live with something which doesn’t look 100% right, but not so for software. Those of us who use software daily, and with all our might and emotion, don’t like it when something doesn’t work 100% right. And we are vocal[1. If I can calm down enough, I’ll be posting a scathing critique of AT&T’s U-Verse digital TV menu system. Fark, I’m getting upset just thinking about it.]. Just as we nerds critique every aspect of Ive’s — and others’ — industrial design, we will double down on Ive’s design decisions in Apple’s future software.
Godspeed on your new journey, Brother Ive, I have faith in your powerz.