A couple of days ago, I said I was considering giving up on iPhone development and trying Android instead. Here are my further thoughts along those lines.
If you're one of the people (like me) who needs to occasionally do some image editing, but who doesn't want to spend a few hundred bucks on Photoshop, you may want to check out Photoshop Elements 8.
Adobe has a deal on it right now: $20 off the normal price, and a $20 rebate, so that the final price is about $60. See the Adobe store. Deal ends 11/30/2009.
I've enjoyed using my Apple products, but I'm considering a switch. I find myself drawn back to Windows on my desktop, and to an Android mobile device.
Thanks to a former co-worker, I got an invite for Google Wave.
The biggest problem right now with Google Wave is finding other people to interact with. Chances are that few of your family, friends, or co-workers have access to Wave yet. I've set up a public wave for readers of this blog. If you are a waver, feel free to play with it:
(If that link doesn't work, then try entering "with:public undefined value" in the Google Wave search box.)
As mentioned in a recent post, my wife bought me a Sony PRS-500 Reader, and I like it a lot. I've just found out about an upgrade offer: PRS-500 owners can trade in their readers for discount on a Reader Pocket or Reader Touch. The offer expires April 10, 2010.
(Bummer. Turns out that I have a PRS-505, not a PRS-500, so I'm not eligible for the upgrade. So I guess I'll just have to wait for the Apple tablet.)
There's a new programming language out there: Go. There are lots of ways to describe it, but basically it's got Python-esque syntax and C++-esque performance. It's statically typed, but is designed to feel more like a dynamic language. It has garbage collection.
Based on its pedigree, I expect this to be a lot more successful than the various other languages intended to be successors to C++. Play with it while it's still cool, before it starts to suck.
Sorry, Windows programmers, but only Linux and Mac OS X are supported for now. But I'm sure Windows programmers won't mind; to them, "new programming language" means "C# 4.0".
I hit a little snag while adding a feature to an iPhone app today. I added this code to load a logo to be displayed in a view:
UIImage *logoImage = [UIImage imageNamed:@"Icon.png"];
This worked fine in the iPhone Simulator, so I thought I was done. I loaded the app onto my iPod Touch, and it didn't work. Running in the debugger, I discovered that
logoImage was being set to
Why would this not work on a device, when it ran fine in the simulator?
It turns out that the iPhone OS filesystem is case-sensitive, while the Mac OS X filesystem is not case-sensitive. The actual name of the image file was
icon.png, with a lowercase-i, so it didn't match on iPhone OS.
No big deal, but it's another reminder that you always need to test on an actual device before considering an iPhone development task done.
Yeah, I know, you're probably getting sick of these Automator services. But I really do create a new one of these practically every day to make my life a little easier, and maybe some of these will be useful to others.
This one puts a UTC timestamp on the clipboard. The timestamp is an ISO 8601-format string like "2009-11-09T13:14:03Z". If you'd like a different format, type "man date" in Terminal to see how to change the output format of the
date command in the shell script below.
I've finally got around to doing some work on that iPhone application that I've committed to finishing this month.
On days I do a lot of work on the app, I don't feel obligated to work too hard on the blog, but I will post a little something about whatever I worked on. Today, I got my iPhone app to connect to a Google App Engine-based web site.
Without giving away too much, I'll just say that the iPhone app and the web site work together to provide a service to iPhone users. I put the web site together in a couple of weekends. I decided to use Google Accounts for authentication, meaning that to log into my web site, either via a web browser or via the iPhone app, a user has to provide a Google account ID and password.
If you do things this way, the server-side authentication stuff is easy. However, writing the client side is not easy, because the mechanism for authenticating with a Google account and connecting to a Google App Engine web site is not well documented. Luckily, I found a Stack Overflow question and answer that provided all the clues I needed to get my iPhone app working.
After using Google's API for implementing the web site, I'm growing increasingly frustrated with the Cocoa APIs. What takes two lines of code on the web side takes dozens of lines of code on the client side. Simple operations like connecting to a URL, downloading data, and storing it to a local database requires a lot of boilerplate code on the Cocoa side. It's not difficult, but it's incredibly verbose.
I should note that I'm using the Python API for Google App Engine. If I was using the Java API, then I'm sure it would be as grotesque as the Objective-C stuff.