Oct 2007

Everything’s Coming Up Milhouse

Daring Fireball: “Apple’s Q4 2007 financial statement is just chock full of good news. Profits are up, revenue is up, iPod sales are up, iPhone sales are strong. But the big news is the Mac.”

iPhone Apps Have to Pay Their Way

Fraser Speirs: “Possibly the worst business decision we could make as Mac developers is to devalue iPhone applications to the same level as Dashboard widgets.”

This is an important discussion—thanks to Fraser for starting it.

Software Kit for iPhone, iPod Touch Applications Set for February 2008

Glenn Fleishman, TidBITS: “While there was no consensus in the existing Mac developer community as to whether Apple would ever fully open up the iPhone platform for third-party applications—a view reinforced by Apple's early reluctance to make any commitment—Jobs stated quite clearly at the D: All Things Digital conference in May 2007 that Apple would open the iPhone up.”

iPhone SDK coming in February

Apple - Hot News: “Let me just say it: We want native third party applications on the iPhone, and we plan to have an SDK in developers’ hands in February.”

iMedia Browser gives media window in any app

Macworld: “Apple includes a media browser in many of its applications, allowing users to browse through photos, songs and movies. iMedia Browser gives users this functionality in any application, according to [Karelia Software].”

Karelia has also made this available as a framework for other developers to use. (Hint to Daniel—this could be cool for MarsEdit.)

RSS Best Practices Profile

RSS Advisory Board: “This profile contains a set of recommendations for Really Simple Syndication, a web syndication format documented in RSS 2.0 (revision 2.0.10).”

(Some of you may recall that I was on the RSS Advisory Board—but that was years ago, and I didn’t work on this document.)

THCanvasView 1.0.1 and PhotoStacks Sample App

Theocacao: “The newest version of THCanvasView adds some obvious features, such as draggable selection rects and basic item arranging. There are now better options for coloring and the generated image previews get frames and drop shadows.”

Five years of Atomic Bird

atomicbird: “Five years ago today Atomic Bird made its public debut. At the time I had never run a business and didn’t know what to expect. I distinctly recall hoping that maybe I’d manage to bring in a few bucks here and there, but having little basis for making realistic projections. It soon became enough to live off of, and it’s still going.”

Apple issues internal Leopard Gold Master candidate builds

Jacqui Cheng, ars technica: “Our spider senses are tingling: Leopard’s final release as Gold Master is drawing near. We’ve already seen the OS X 10.5 (Leopard) Gold Master release candidate floating around in the wild today (*cough*), and our sources confirm that a GM candidate build has been released internally at Apple.”

Primordial AppleScript & PlugIns With Coda

Steven Frank: “When nobody was looking, I added some extremely basic AppleScript and plugin support to Coda 1.0.4.”

I haven’t had the chance to use Coda for a real project yet—but I’m planning to use it to update NetNewsWire’s Help book for the next release.

Finder-Like Icon View for Cocoa

Theocacao: “Mimicking the Finder icon view isn’t entirely easy. Drawing the icons is one thing, but handling drag and drop, repositioning, adjusting the scroll view when the content changes—it all takes some work. To ease the burden, I’d like to share THCanvasView with you.”

I’ve Been Transmit’d

Red Sweater Blog: “So today I found it especially appropriate to ask myself ‘What Would Panic Do,’ when I discovered that MarsEdit’s icon has been misappropriated and included in a Linux distribution called PCLinuxOS.”

Apple iPhone Web apps directory

Apple’s iPhone Web apps directory is online. (It includes NewsGator Mobile, of course.)

Does this mean no native development for iPhone? It doesn’t necessarily mean that. But it does show how Apple is serious about folks creating web apps for iPhone.

Tonight’s Xcoders meeting: Gus on developing Acorn

At tonight’s Xcoders meeting, Gus Mueller will talk about developing Acorn, his new image-editing app. The meeting is at 7 p.m. at the dBug Resource Center.

Apple Nearing iPhone Third-Party Developer Announcement

Glenn Fleishman, TidBITS: “The bits and pieces I've heard are maddeningly non-specific: I don’t know, for instance, whether a full software developer’s kit (SDK) will be released; what tier of Apple Developer Connection (ADC) program member you need to be (if any); and how much of the innards would be unleashed.”

Normally I wouldn’t think much about a piece like this—but it’s by Glenn Fleishman and it’s published in TidBITS, so I am thinking that something might be happening.

‘Unsupported’ Means ‘Supported’? What a Country!

Daring Fireball, The ‘Un’ in ‘Unsupported’: “I think I finally understand a certain misguided mindset that I’ve been baffled by for a decade. This mindset is exemplified by the sort of person who thinks that Apple ‘screwed them over’ with the release of the iPhone 1.1.1 update.”

Adam on Twitter

Adam Engst, TidBITS, Confessions of a Twitter Convert: “I’m eating a hearty meal of crow (roasted, with garlic and rosemary) today, since I’m here to tell you how interesting and downright useful I’ve found Twitter to be since being turned onto it properly at the C4 conference in August.”

Editing code

Michael McCracken: “Once you get a piece of code to the point where you believe it works—it’s passing its tests—go back over it and edit it.”

iPhone 1.1.1 preliminary jailbreak

David Chartier, ars technica: “Once again, the iPhone Dev Team—a group of hackers not to be confused with Apple’s engineers—has snuck into the iPhone to poke around in places that Apple would prefer them not to.”

Microsoft confirms Bungie going indie

Seattle P-I: “Microsoft just e-mailed a news release confirming that Bungie Studios, maker of the big Halo video-game franchise, will become independent.”

Macworld Readers’ Choice Awards

Macworld: Editors’ Notes: “For 2007, we’re doubling the number of reader awards to four. And we’re introducing some new categories which, ideally, will give more developers a shot at earning some accolades.”

If you’re thinking about what apps to nominate, let me suggest a few of my favorites: Acorn, Coda, MarsEdit, Radioshift, Skitch, and Twitterrific.

(We’re living in the golden age of Mac software. The list above could be much, much longer—there are so many worthy apps, and it seems like more all the time.)

Software Is Hard

gamearchitect.net: “You never get to the point where you have to hammer in a nail and discover that the nail will take an estimated six months of research and development, with a high level of uncertainty.” (Via Tim Bray.)

New Apple-related books

CARS: “While other book series by other ‘authors’ attempt to ‘inform’ you about ‘features’ and ‘ways’ you can use software or hardware ‘products,’ the Take Control of the Missing Manual for Dummies books will encourage you to let your id run amok through a vast technological landscape formed by people who actually do something for a living instead of living in their parents’ basement like you do.”

Wii Transfer 2.5

Ars Technica: Wii Transfer 2.5 brings bookmark sharing, easy movie conversion to the Mac: “If you want to share media from your Mac to a Wii, Riverfold Software’s Wii Transfer utility is just about the only way to roll. This simple utility offers a streamlined UI for sharing movies, music, and pictures.”

-[NSWindow frame] lies

rentzsch.com: “I wrote a category for NSWindow called -liveFrame. It wraps a Carbon API that reports the window’s current rectangle, like, all! the! time!”

Forever Is a Long Time

Daring Fireball: “That the 1.1.1 upgrade both breaks SIM-unlocking and third-party applications comes down to same underlying reason: the closing of known techniques of accessing the iPhone file system.”

Sherman, fire Up the Contrarian machine

bynkii.com: “First, in what universe did he think that Apple would, considering the deal with AT&T, not ruthlessly undo unlocking procedures, or at the very least, invalidate that device?”

Greg on iTunes Wi-fi Music Store

Greg Reinacker (NewsGator founder) on the iTunes Wi-fi Music Store: “They completely nailed the interface. It works, it’s fast, and it’s fun.”

iPhone Human Interface Guidelines

Apple: “This document introduces you to the iPhone environment and how it shapes the user experience of iPhone content. Then, it explains how to design a superlative user interface for your web content so it displays and works well on iPhone.”

iPhone 1.0 forever

Macworld: Editors’ Notes: “I’ve chosen not to upgrade because I value the productivity, entertainment, and customization abilities offered by the third-party applications I’ve added to my iPhone.”

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