Archives for : postedfromiphone

2010: Prove It

Two things I’m watching for in 2010:

Android puts the lie to iPhone assumptions, or doesn’t: The limitations on the iPhone SDK and the App Store aren’t just nefarious skullduggery: there are stated reasons, in the self-interest of Apple, users, and developers for them. But how valid are they? Would background processes really drain the battery? Would un-reviewed apps really lead to a swarm of malware and network degredation? We can’t know. But if Android is going to eschew these limitations, it could provide a great experimental test. If the Android world is beseiged by garbage, villainy, and 30-minute battery lives, then Apple’s restrictions will be vindicated. But if that doesn’t happen, then it might be time to petition Mr. Jobs for an redress of grievances.

Snow Leopard needs to deliver the goods: OK, a lot of us have upgraded to Snow Leopard, with its internal clean-ups and no new features. We’re promised that the this will give us better apps as developers adopt features like Grand Central Dispatch, which makes multi-core programming more viable. But until that happens, what we’ve got is a promise and a bunch of broken device drivers (and, at least for me, a sleep mode that usually wakes up immediately after going to sleep). So, is this the year Snow Leopard pays off? Right now, fast QuickTime exports is about the only place I see my 8 cores really flying, and it doesn’t make up for the feature loss in the QTX player. And booting into 64-bit mode is a total festival of breakage (my mouse and keyboard drivers still lack 64-bit KEXTs). So I’m really waiting and hoping this pays off in a big way this year. Or at least gets better with updates: my iPhone can connect to my current client’s Exchange e-mail, but SL’s, allegedly with Exchange support, still can’t.

Fees and sleaze

In the gate, waiting for my hour-late flight to WWDC. Somehow, my suitcase that’s been fine for 10 years is now too big and subject to a $30 fee.

What other industry responds to hard times by screwing the customers? I think they’ve misapplied the lessons of RyanAir, which uses fees to make up for low fares. Adding new fees to the same old fares makes us feel like we’re being gamed. If fuel is so expensive, just raise fares $50 and stop being such dicks. Sheesh.

Betwixt the novice-expert shift

I’ve been doing a lot more iPhone coding this week, finally putting together app logic (where I started with my iPhone work) with GUI. It’s starting to come together faster, and I find I’m remembering more details and making better first guesses, often in lieu of digging through docs.

I wouldn’t have said this last night, hung up on a problem with the navigation stuff. What I found is that a sample app I was working from is highly dependent on side effects and relationships expressed not in code but instead implicit in Interface Builder. Just work from the guides and be willing to build dynamic parts with code and it’s not bad at all.

Diskettes are quaint

So, I offered to help Mike get his first adventure game, LSJUMBLE II off of some old diskettes he got from a fellow Stanford band alum. I thought it would be as simple as getting a USB floppy drive from Fry’s.

Unfortunately, what he has are the 800 kb variable-speed double density diskettes, which are NOT supported by any of the USB floppy drives. Apparently, I’ll need to find an actual Mac with such a drive, and I sent my antique Macs to electronics recycling earlier this year.

Another question: if I can get at such a Mac (maybe at WWDC or the Apple compatibility labs) and make a disk image, how the heck am I going to get the data off the antique and into the modern world? The end of the floppy predates the inclusion of USB, ethernet, and wifi.

LocalTalk and MacTCP, anyone?

Mobile test

Testing a WordPress plugin to facilitate blogging directly from the iPhone…