Apple is suddenly taking a much more open approach to testing its desktop operating system. For the first time in years, the company is inviting regular consumers to help test upcoming OS X software updates before they're distributed publicly. Apple says the OS X Beta Seed Program will allow anyone to "test-drive beta software and provide quality and usability feedback that will help make OS X even better." In recent years, Apple has offered beta tests for individual apps like FaceTime and Safari, but it hasn't offered a public OS X beta program since way back in 2000 — and even then it charged users $29.95 to take part. This time it's free and open to everyone, so long as you're 18 or older and have an Apple ID. To enroll, you'll need to sign a fairly serious confidentiality agreement that forbids you from spilling details on new features early.