aetles + developers   9

On Being a Designer and a Developer: Not Quite Unicorn Rare by Diogenes Brito
As Austin Bales says in a great talk, good designers and good developers actually have a lot in common. The crossover really even shows itself in our language when we use (appropriate) terms like "social engineering" for techniques designers use to illicit certain behaviors, or "software design" for the planning and creation of programming code. Both designers and developers put a premium on simplicity and clarity. Both are trying to make their creations as easy to intuit and work with as possible. Developers refactor their code as requirements change and complexity increases the same way designers redesign interfaces to make room for new or changing functionality. They have similar traits, skills, and motivations, they just work in different mediums and have different specialties. Designers tend to specialize and focus on the beginning of the creation process, whereas engineers specialize on the end or latter half of the process. I say a more accurate representation of a single person's skills might look something like this:

Each person has a certain level of skill in the designer and/or developer subject areas, where many of the skills and habits that would make you excel in either area would help in both. People may have a tendency to lean towards one area over the other, but no one has a "type" that would prevent them from learning and improving as a designer or a developer. What matters is the time and effort put into learning. World class designers and developers have put in lots and lots of dedicated practice: their (proverbial) 10,000 hours.
design  developer  development  designers  developers 
may 2013 by Aetles
Two months later, developers (mostly) positive about OS X’s GateKeeper | Ars Technica
Remember the wails about Apple turning OS X into a "walled garden" when news of GateKeeper emerged? The tool, which allows OS X users to restrict where their apps come from, was announced in February 2012 and was included with Mountain Lion when it was released in July. The controversy hinged on Apple's attempt to guide users toward installing only those apps downloaded from the Mac App Store, or at least settling for a middle ground wherein users could also install apps "signed" by the developer—an action that still costs the developer $99 per year and pads Apple's bank account.

The goal was to increase security on the Mac—especially in light of the recent Flashback scare—but power users bristled. GateKeeper does allow Mac users to install apps from any source they'd like, but it's not as easy as it used to be. The OS throws up flags that warn users about unsigned applications, which can easily discourage people from trying new software.

On the developer side, however, there was a cautious optimism that GateKeeper could mean good things for Mac users. Before GateKeeper was released to the public, Ars interviewed a number of developers who told us they generally felt comfortable with the tiers of control, even if things weren't perfect. Some acknowledged that Apple was indeed stepping up its level of control over users' computers, however, and expressed concern that Apple could change its default settings at any time to limit software distribution even further.

So has the apocalypse come? Two months post-Mountain Lion, are developers suffering from GateKeeper's new restrictions? We reached out to a handful of Mac developers for their perspective, and to see how their work has been impacted by the change.
apple  developers  macappstore  sandboxing  gatekeeper  osx 
october 2012 by Aetles
The Problem With iCloud | TightWind
iCloud’s promise is a dream: your contacts, calendar, backups, songs, documents and application data are on all of your devices, whenever and wherever you need them. No need to worry about moving files from device to device on a flash drive or emailing them or any of the other crazy stuff we used to do. All of your stuff, always there when you need it. If that were completely the case, it would be a no-brainer for me. I’d implement iCloud syncing immediately, because that idea—never having to worry about where my stuff is again—is one of those ideas that makes my heart flutter with excitement.

Unfortunately, that’s not the case.
icloud  apple  ios  osx  sync  development  developers 
august 2012 by Aetles
Why developers, customers should be wary of the Mac App Store | Macworld
Perhaps, at this point, you’re wondering what you should do. The first step is concluding how you feel about the Mac App Store and Apple’s increasingly strict rules regarding the apps that can be sold there. If you don’t mind them, keep contentedly shopping in the store.

But take pause. When we talk about the importance of backing up, we often say that it’s a question of when, not if, your hard drive will fail. With the Mac App Store, it’s nearing certainty that if you haven’t yet been stymied by the impact of one of Apple’s Mac App Store rules, you will be soon.

That stymieing might take one of several forms: A developer of an app you love might release a brand new version with a brand new price tag, since there’s no option to offer upgrade pricing. An app you love may be forced to strip out features you depend upon to comply with Apple’s rules. Or developers behind an app you love may find that they simply can’t keep the app in the Mac App Store anymore, and pull it (see Postbox, Alfred, TextExpander, and Moom, each of which has been forced to move out of the App Store and return to a direct sales only model). Whether you’ll be able to “cross-grade” from your Mac App Store version of that app to a standalone, external version will be at the whim (and maybe even technical expertise) of the developer in question.

While the Mac App Store remains a fine place to buy certain software titles today, the issues are real, and Apple thus far has displayed its characteristic determination to stick to its current plan. If you’re concerned, you have two tools you can use: The first is to stop shopping at the Mac App Store when possible, and buy apps direct from developers instead. And the second is to share your feedback with Apple directly.

It’s definitely too soon to panic about the future of the Mac App Store and OS X. But it’s not too soon to be concerned.
apple  macappstore  sandboxing  mac  developers 
august 2012 by Aetles
Sandbox of frustration: Apple's walled garden closes in on Mac developers | The Verge
However, most developers have taken the past few months to update their apps according to Apple's new standards — which for some developers means checking a few boxes, and for others means sacrificing features users love. Since Mountain Lion was announced, many top apps like Fantastical, Sparrow, and 1Password have prepared for a Mac world that looks more like iOS's perceived "walled garden." For better or for worse, most developers seem to agree that adding support for Mountain Lion seems to be a do or die.

"Any developer who wants to build for Apple's products typically stays as on pace with the curve as possible, because that's what a significant portion of Apple's customers do," says 1Password's David Chartier. Developers now have two choices: sell unrestricted apps independent of the Mac App Store, or abide by Apple's rules to gain access to the App Store, its enormous distribution power, and new features in OS X like iCloud document syncing for apps and iOS-style push notifications from the cloud in Notification Center.
sandboxing  developers  macappstore  mac  apple 
august 2012 by Aetles
Developers dish on iCloud's challenges | Macworld
With services like Dropbox, Google Docs, and even IMAP email, users today expect their data to remain up-to-date and available on every device. iOS users want conflict-free access to their data—whether it's documents, in-game progress, or other details—on their iPads, iPhones, and Macs. Apple aims to satisfy that user need with iCloud.

With iCloud, Apple promises developers that they can keep their users’ data in sync. But while a steadily increasing number of developers are implementing iCloud support within their apps, its adoption rate still seems surprisingly low overall.

Are developers hesitant to embrace iCloud? And if so, why?
apple  cloud  icloud  ios  osx  development  developers  sync  from instapaper
july 2012 by Aetles
Regarding reaction to the reaction to Sparrow being end-of-lined | iMore.com
The reaction to Sparrow is no different than than the reaction to Tweetie being replaced by the new Twitter for iPhone. It's no different than the reaction to Firefly being canceled.
mac  developers  users  sellout  sparrow  customers 
july 2012 by Aetles
Want iOS 6? No Problem: Buy It Now From a Scofflaw Developer | Gadget Lab | Wired.com
If you’re a diehard Apple fan who desperately wants to run a buggy alpha version of iOS 6 right now, your only legal option is to shell out the $99 to join the iOS Developer Program. Affordable for a developer, the barrier to entry is high enough to keep out casual fans from accidentally bricking their phones and cluttering up the Genius Bar.

But over the last couple years, a cottage industry’s popped up around illicit UDID activations — startups exploiting Apple’s Developer Program to sell access to pre-release iOS software, usually for less than $10 per device. The craziest thing? Apple doesn’t seem to care.
apple  ios  developers  beta  udid 
june 2012 by Aetles
Advice on Attracting Good Developers - Samuel Mullen
For the sake of argument, let’s assume you represent a smallish company which has established itself to some degree and you’re looking to bring on new developers - and by “new developers”, I mean developers who care about the work they produce (i.e. hackers). With so much demand for these developers, how do you compete?

It should come as no surprise that the first thing you must do is to understand how developers think. We’re a different lot. We don’t stop working just because we’ve left the office; we hack on our own projects, we do side work for more experience, and we attend user groups and contribute back to our technical communities. We live and breathe technology; it’s who we are. Understand this, and you’re halfway there. Learn to encourage this in us, and you’re home free.

Attracting developer interest really isn’t hard, it just requires putting your name and support behind what we’re interested in. Here’s just a sample of things you can do:
hiring  programmers  developers 
march 2012 by Aetles

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