John Gruber’s annual live version of The Talk Show has become a tradition at WWDC featuring a variety of guests from Apple in recent years. This year, with the conference held online-only, Gruber recorded the show remotely with guests Craig Federighi and Greg Joswiak.
Apple crams a lot into a keynote, and it is interviews like Gruber’s that provide additional details, helping paint the bigger picture with interesting insights into the thought that goes into the company’s products.
The wide-ranging interview covers developers and the App Store, the Mac and Big Sur, the iPad and Pencil, iOS 14, and privacy. In response to commentators who believe that Apple is merging iOS and macOS or abandoning the Mac, Federighi rattled off a long list of projects related to the Mac, commenting, “We love the Mac and we’re all in.” Joswiak added, “We’re far from bored with the Mac; it’s in our DNA.”
Federighi also addressed the relationship of Catalyst, SwiftUI, AppKit, and UIKit for developers, explaining that there is no single correct path. He said that the best path depends on where developers start. For example, some developers have invested heavily in AppKit and will probably want to stick with it, while UIKit developers may want to bring their apps to the Mac using Catalyst, whereas a new developer may want to start fresh with SwiftUI.
Gruber also asked about Scribble for iPad, the new feature that recognizes handwriting and adds other flexibility to taking notes with the Apple Pencil. The popularity of apps like GoodNotes and Notability haven’t gone unnoticed in Cupertino. In response to Gruber’s questioning, Federighi explained that the feature is designed to extend the utility of the Pencil when you’re already in a Pencil-centric mode, making it an alternative, but not a replacement, for a keyboard and touch.
The entire interview runs roughly 90 minutes and is worth watching in its entirety on YouTube for the full experience, but it is also available in an audio-only format as part of The Talk Show’s podcast feed.