It blows my mind that no one tried to do anything special. Git (and it’s DVCS cousins like Mercurial & Bazaar) provide an amazing platform to build next generation clients — and it’s like the entire OS X ecosystem left their imagination at home.
Eventually, I (well, many of us) decided that better native clients (OSX, Windows, Linux, Eclipse, Visual Studio, etc) was the best way to grow GitHub. And since we all use Macs — we should start off with an OS X application.
Kyle Neath has posted an excellent overview of what designing the official GitHub Mac app was like, the challenges he and his team had to face when dealing with Apple’s recent interface changes coming in Lion, and the overall “new trend” of Mac apps inspired by their counterparts.
Check out the whole story and screenshot gallery here.
Among the 5000 developers crowding Apple’s WWDC 2011 this year, Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster was on the scene, surveying a small pool developers on platform related questions. Munster’s sample of 45 participants consisted of only iOS developers, who’d naturally favor Apple’s development platforms over Microsoft or RIM. The results of the survey were published in a note to clients that compared these 45 responses to 20 he gathered in 2008, when the iPad and Android markets were non-existant. Of the developers sampled, Munster found that the pool of iOS developers typically favored smartphone development over desktop development, and that iOS was best for monetization. Philip Elmer-DeWitt highlights some of the findings:
Only 7% are also developing apps for the Mac, down from 50% in 2008.
Nearly half (47%) write apps for Android, 36% for Research in Motion’s (RIMM) BlackBerry, 13% for Microsoft (MSFT) Windows Phone 7 and 7% for Hewlett-Packard’s (HPQ) WebOS.
Asked which platform had the highest potential for future growth, none mentioned the BlackBerry, WebOS or Nokia’s (NOK) Symbian.
Although 100% preferred iOS for ease of development and monetization, they did have some complaints, chief among them Apple’s “strict limitations” (38%) and the App Store approval process (11%).
Lion, iOS 5, and Apple’s iCloud were hot topics of WWDC 2011 this year, and while Munster only surveyed a handful of developers, there’s a lot to be excited about for both Mac and iPhone development. Scott Forstall announced on stage that iOS development in particular is still a hot market with over 200 million iOS devices sold. iOS’ installed base is leading the market at 44%, compared to 28% for Android and 19% for RIM. Total, Apple has paid developers $2.5 million dollars for apps marketed in the App Store.
Desktop development is still strong, as showcased in Apple’s Design Awards this year, featuring amazing apps like Pixelmator and Capo. Many developers are going to be updating or releasing new versions of theirs apps for Lion through the Mac App Store, and if Reeder is any indication, I have a feeling Mac development is as strong as it’s ever been. Survey results have been posted after the break.
Mozilla has stepped up to the plate with their launch of Firefox 4, which has now garnered well over 59 million downloads as of its launch on March 22nd. With App Tabs, much improved performance, and some incredible features like Panorama baked right in, I’ve adopted Firefox 4 as my browser of choice for the time being over Chrome and Safari. While I leave my love of WebKit behind (perhaps only temporarily), ConceivablyTech dug into the Firefox UX planning pages to give us a glimpse of what’s next for Firefox 5.
Together with the release of Xcode 4, now also available for non-registered iOS and Mac developers in the Mac App Store, Apple also pushed an update for iAd Producer, its iAd design and development software for OS X.
Version 1.1 (weighs in at 91 MB) brings iOS 4.3 compatibility and the possibility to create ads with multiple banners. As promised last year, the iPad is fully targeted in this release with fullscreen banners as well.
Improved compatibility with version management systems
Creation of ads with multiple banners
Support for full-screen banners on iOS 4.3 devices
If you’re a Mac or iOS developer and happen to have an iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad running the iBooks app, go open the iBookstore and search for “apple developer”. As you can see, Apple is offering iOS / Mac development iBooks completely for free.
The six books, published by Apple Developer Publications, include “iOS Technology Overview”, “Cocoa Fundamentals Guide” and the popular “iOS Human Interface Guidelines”. Some books report a release date of “November 2010″, but Apple is making sure you’re running the latest iBooks version by writing in each description “This book displays best with iBooks 1.2 or later”.
Indeed the books are elegant and come with a lot of detailed graphics and screenshots. Sure they’re not illustrated books (supported in iBooks 1.2), but I can see why Apple is recommending the latest version of their ebook reading software. (more…)
The 360|MacDev is a new conference aimed at OS X developers and the whole Apple developer community. Although I won’t be able to attend the event, I have talked with the folks behind it and it’s surely one of this year’s events you don’t want to miss. The conference will take place in Denver, Colorado at the Crowne Plaza Downtown on Dec. 10 and Dec. 11. You can check out the full schedule here.
We’re a conference company, focused on develoepr community. Our goal is to bring the best and brightest in the developer community together for 2 days of incredible sessions, awesome parties, good times, and learning. If you don’t leave Saturday night (Or sunday night if you take in a day of skiing), with more ideas than you know what to do with, we’re not doing our jobs!
This winter you can get your fill of Cocoa development awesomeness, and even some skiing if you’re up for it! We’ll be bringing together the best of the community . Join us in Denver, CO.
The discount code “MacStories15″ will take 15% off the registration price. You can also check out the list of speakers here. If you’re a developer and you want to attend a great event to get in touch with the community and fellow OS X developers, the 360|MacDev conference is the perfect place to start.
Dylan Ginsburg, developer of River of News for iPad (which I reviewed here), quits his day job to become a full-time iOS developer. As a first step, he posts the results of RoN in the App Store so far.
“OK, what about satisfaction with my work? I don’t have a chart for that but I don’t think I need one. Developing River of News has been the most rewarding “work” of my life. It’s not even close. My sleeping is all screwed up because I keep thinking about how I can make my software better. That’s right, “my software.” What a great thing to be able to say. I’ve gotten such tremendous satisfaction from creating something that people use and like.
Less money, more satisfaction. What do I do?
I resigned from my job this week. My employer treated me well and I thank them but I’ve got a shot to do something amazing and I’m not going to pass it up. If I can be successful at this then all I need to earn a living is a laptop and an internet connection. I can do that anywhere in the world and on my own schedule. Wow. That’s a life changer.”
It is indeed. $20,000 in two months is not bad, but he could get a lot more with full-time development. I bet he will. Also, developers:
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I’ve always had a reliable salary and a good standard of living. But I’m taking my shot.”
It’s stories like this one that keep the App Store running. Take your shot.
We started the iPad development from scratch, but a lot of our underlying code (mostly models) was re-used. The development was done by two experienced iOS developers.
With such a short schedule, we worked some pretty long hours. Let’s be conservative and say it’s 10 hours per day for 6 days a week. That 60 hours for 9 weeks gives us 540 hours. With two developers, that’s pretty close to 1,100 hours. Our rate for clients is $150 per hour giving $165,000 just for new code. Remember also that we were reusing a bunch existing code: I’m going to lowball the value of that code at $35,000 giving a total development cost of $200,000.
Craig Hockenberry is one of the Twitterrific developers. The whole reply is a must-read.
What could Apple buy with a 150 million dollars? World peace probably, though that’s pretty overrated in my book. Apple is rumored to be intent on sealing the deal with a Chinese game developer by the name of Handseeing Information Technology, who specialize in Rich Internet Applications.