A few extra comments on the Dharma/Yellow Box rumor. By the way, Wil Shipley has also weighed in with similar reasons against a YB revival:

Seriously, people. Apple doesn’t WANT your current Intel machine to run Mac OS X software. If it could, they wouldn’t be able to sell you a new machine in June of 2006. Trace the dollars! How would Apple profit from this?

It’s been demonstrated (by the previous Yellow Box) that big developers won’t just write their software once for Yellow Box and then “call it good” on Windows. Hell, Adobe can hardly be convinced to come out of the CFM closet, much less dump their Windows codebase in favor of a Cocoa one.

I agree that for small developers YB might, just possibly, be an alternative way to write new cross-platform applications, even with all the juggling they’d have to do to accomodate platform-specific stuff. There are some cross-platform frameworks around, but I personally don’t know any compelling small apps that use them – then again, I don’t use Windows myself on a regular basis, and when I have to, I just use the included apps.

Still, I can’t see Apple reviving YB just to help small developers break into the Windows market. There’s only one substantial cross-platform framework they still support – QuickTime – and there their motives are very different.

On the other hand, Apple has been known to invest into cross-platform frameworks strictly for their own use; for instance, iTunes on Windows certainly uses some in-house Carbon compatibility layer, as well as parts of QuickTime. Should Apple decide to rewrite iTunes in Cocoa on both platforms, some in-house version of YB would certainly come in handy; the same would apply if Apple decided to port some other major app to Windows – Safari is often cited as a candidate for that.

In fact, since Apple admitted to keeping successive versions of Mac OS X for Intel alive in the labs all these years, it wouldn’t be a surprise if they still were keeping the Yellow Box around too. But going from using it in-house to releasing a supported version to the outside world is too unlikely a step, at least IMHO.