I bet a lot of modern day developers would look at my code and say *“You should find another like of work.”*
*“We have great agreements where when Biden and Obama used to bring killers out, they would say don’t bring them back to our country, we don’t want them. Well, we have to, we don’t want them. They wouldn’t take them. Now with us, they take them. Someday, I’ll tell you why. Someday, I’ll tell you why. But they take them and they take them very gladly. They used to bring them out and they wouldn’t even let the airplanes land if they brought them back by airplanes. They wouldn’t let the buses into their country. They said we don’t want them. Said no, but they entered our country illegally and they’re murderers, they’re killers in some cases.”* – Donald J. Trump, July 14, 2020
That is a direct quote from the sitting President of the United States.
He opened his mouth and words came out. I recognized all the words as English words but there is no structure. Can anyone follow along? I certainly can’t.
Republicans, you’ve had your stooge in office for three plus years. You got your tax cuts for the rich. You didn’t convict in the Senate. A virus is raging across our wonderful country killing thousands every day.
How much death and destruction is enough?
The New Mac Lineup
Just riffing here, random thoughts.
Thin, think iPad Pro 12.9in in a 13in form. Full keyboard, similar to today’s. The new design reminiscent of the iPad Pro designs. Edge to edge crisp display. It’s a convertible, which means you can flip the display over the back of the computer and it becomes a tablet. It’ll be about as thick as and weigh as much as the 12in MacBook.
Completely touch aware. Support for Apple Pencil. FaceID will be supported. No fan. As fast as, if not faster than, a modern 16in MacBook Pro. A battery life of 15-hours (10 under heavy load.)
The Mac Mini is an obvious place to make a huge difference in price performance. The question is, will Apple make a screaming fast Mac Mini for a good price? My guess is no. It will continue to be a low end option. It will get a new design and be about the size of the Apple TV. Fast. Quiet.
The iMac and iMac Pro – if the pro continues to be a thing – will not have touch support but will get a new design. Edge to edge display. FaceID. Fast. Quiet.
The Mac Pro design will remain as is for a while. A long while. It was designed to take us into the future. My big question here is, is the design going to work for replacing the CPU with a new Apple Silicon SoC?
The new lineup, with the modern design, will be Apple Silicon only. The price for the 16in and new 13in (14?) will increase. All devices with Apple Silicon will increase in price. Anyone believing Apple will drop the price because they’re in charge of everything, thus costing less to make, is dreaming. Apple only increases prices for new items.
The Intel based lineup will continue for a period of time as the inexpensive option in the lineup and will eventually fade out.
I feel like the Apple Silicon announcement really solidified my thoughts around the lines between iPad and MacBook. I had predicted the announcement of a 12in iOS laptop I’d dubbed iBook. That didn’t happen. But Apple Silicon Macs are so much better than my mythical iBook. True Pro developer hardware and OS. Full access to the computer. Everything we need to make excellent Mac and iOS applications.
Oh, and I really believe we’ll get a version of Windows that runs really well on Apple Silicon. It’s just a matter of time. The NT kernel, and all of Windows for that matter, are very portable and already run on ARM chips.
It’s a beautiful day here in Charlottesville. The birds are chirping, the squirrels are foraging and jumping around in the trees, and I’m sitting on our porch with the dogs sipping coffee trying to take it all in, but my brain has other ideas.
I’m thinking about the cross platform application I’ve wanted to write for, geez, 20-years. I’d estimated, based on my skill set and how slowly I code, it would take at least 10-years to complete. (Why am I so obsessed with this idea?)
As I sit here I’m asking myself, why bother? By the time I finish folks probably won’t care about native, high performance, native desktop and mobile applications.
Apple is still pushing native and this app would target iPad and Mac but it will also target Windows. At least that is what I’m thinking. Microsoft gave up on native desktop apps a long time ago. Sure, they’ve introduced WinUI 3 recently but they’re pushing Electron apps fairly hard. Heck, why not, VSCode is Electron and it’s amazing. I couldn’t do that.
I really do not care to be a web developer but at some point I’m going to either become one or do something completely different to earn a living. Owning a coffee shop is something I’ve often considered.
I’m tired. Aging. Tired of working for other people. That, I think, is my biggest frustration. I’d always imagined myself as a successful indie software developer. Just a one person shop, a lifestyle job. Make something, sell something, repeat.
If I happen to find a truckload of cash laying around it could change my math. Until then I’ll continue to fight with my brain.
Here’s hoping I win. 😀
(Please forgive my brain dump. This is but a small taste of what’s going on in my head, daily.)
Stream – It’s close to finished
I’ve kicked out a beta of Stream with Import/Export and extra icons supported. I’ve already received some very useful feedback and need to make a decision about implementing those requests.
As it stands I understand the feedback I’ve received but I desperately want to ship Stream. The items that seem most requested are bookmarking last position in the timeline and marking an item as read.
I get it. Most feed readers have those features and some folks consider it table stakes. I may skip that for now just to get 1.0 on the store, because I really want to share it.
I can always add these two features as a 1.1 release.
I haven’t decided if that’s what I’m going to do. My beta testers have been downright amazing and I really want folks to be happy with this super simple reader.
If I don’t add these features the only thing left is to add In-App Purchase ( a tip jar) and fix a few bugs, then it’s done.
Here’s to shipping.
As I was watching the Keynote I couldn’t help but get really excited about developing for the Mac. I’ve had plans off and on to get Stream running on the Mac – it actually does run on the Mac but it’s just a shell of app. The current Mac implementation is using AppKit. I really wanted to learn AppKit because it’s how all the lovely apps we use today are built. Think of [Safari](https://www.apple.com/safari/) (the UI at least), [Photoshop](https://photoshop.com) (the UI), and my favorites like [Twitterrific](https://twitterrific.com), [Day One](https://dayoneapp.com), [Tot](https://tot.rocks) (I’m writing this post with it), [NetNewsWire](https://ranchero.com/netnewswire/), and [BBEdit](https://www.barebones.com/products/bbedit/) all use AppKit and the list goes on and on and on. It’s the Mac equivalent of Win32 (A.K.A. Windows API.) It’s tried and true. And until now it was the obvious choice for building an app for the Mac.
## The Grizzled Veteran
What I heard: _“If you have an AppKit app keep on plugging away but consider mixing in SwiftUI.”_
AppKit is going to live on. Makes complete sense to me. You can’t just drop a framework serving, I’d imagine, thousands of apps in the wild. Some of the most popular applications on the Mac use this framework, like I mentioned in my opening paragraph. I failed to mention Microsoft’s Office apps. They’re really popular.
Something else to consider. Large portions of the operating system use AppKit. It seems a waste of time to go through the entire operating system and replace all that working code with SwiftUI, doesn’t it?
Remember that old saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” A lot of folks will adopt that saying and Apple can’t just drop AppKit on the floor. At least for now.
AppKit will be around for the foreseeable future. When Apple shows that slide with a hint you should start moving your app to SwiftUI, then you know time is short. Until then keep on keeping on and make sure that new code is written in SwiftUI.
## The Utility Player
UIKit is the the most popular framework Apple has ever created. Today’s iOS App Store is full of apps built entirely on UIKit. You can’t make an app without using it – directly or indirectly.
When Apple announces they used [Catalyst](https://developer.apple.com/mac-catalyst/) to bring Messages – which has to be one of the most used UIKit applications on iOS – to the Mac you have to listen.
What I heard: _“If you have a great iPad App today and want to get it on the Mac, use Catalyst.”_
Indeed. Use Catalyst. Seems pretty obvious.
Again, this technology should be good until AppKit is no longer a thing on the Mac. That’ll take years and years, if it happens at all.
## The Rookie
[SwiftUI](https://developer.apple.com/xcode/swiftui/) has a lot of promise. It’s definitely Apple’s preferred way of creating applications moving forward. The abstract nature of it means you get most of the work you need for each platform by coding it once. We’re not talking Java’s promise of write once run anywhere. That obviously didn’t work. We’ve come a long way since then and Apple is definitely pushing the boundaries. Will you have #if’s in your Swift code? Absolutely. Is that a horrible thing? No, it is not. It’s a small price to pay to get your application on all of Apple’s platforms.
What I heard: _“If you’re building a new application, use SwiftUI. It’s the way forward.”_
This changes my calculation for bringing Stream to the Mac. Since it’s in its infancy on the Mac I’m switching to SwiftUI. Once it is completed on the Mac I’ll bring that code back to the iOS version and it’ll stay that way.
The project I’ve always wanted to build will be built from the ground up using SwiftUI for the user experience. That’s just how it has to be to keep it viable for years to come.
Until I’m retired – read as dead – I’m going to invest in SwiftUI.
[Bloomberg](https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-06-09/apple-plans-to-announce-move-to-its-own-mac-chips-at-wwdc): _“The first Mac processors will have eight high-performance cores, codenamed Firestorm, and at least four energy-efficient cores, known internally as Icestorm. Apple is exploring Mac processors with more than 12 cores for further in the future, the people said.”_
Lots of hubbub this week in the developer community around Mac transition to ARM chips has been about how can we build ARM apps without ARM hardware?
Think about how we build iOS, tvOS, and Watch apps today. We run them in a simulator. Xcode builds our iOS apps for x86 so they’re actually running in the simulator app on the intel chipset in our computers.
What if Apple spent time developing an emulator? Yes, an ARM emulator. Why not? They have the resources and it’s not like they couldn’t start with something like Virtual Box or do some crazy licensing deal with VMWare or Parallels for that matter.
Given that you’d either fire up the VM and run your entire environment in the virtual machine or maybe they take it a step further and you use Xcode on your Mac, the way you do today, and it fires up a virtual machine app that your newly ported Mac app runs in?
It could happen.
Hire this Kid
Can someone please hire my daughter to do some kind of design work?
Rogan and Podcasting
[New York Times](https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/25/opinion/joe-rogan-spotify-podcast.html): _“If you want to understand why podcasting is killing, he says, you first need to appreciate the world-changing, brain-rewiring transformation in how we consume information.”_
I wonder if people understand the subtle difference between a podcast and content locked behind a proprietary format? Super subtle.
In a nutshell Podcasting is spoken word, published as a feed – RSS or other open type, in an open audio format, like MP3.
If I can’t subscribe to it in my [podcast player of choice](https://castro.fm), it’s not a podcast.
I’m surprised some enterprising Trump Youth hasn’t had this idea yet.
Camp COVID is an exclusive summer camp. You pay $100,000.00, plus the cost of any hospitalization, to attend this all inclusive summer camp. We’re talking high end camp here. Not s’mores and hot cocoa by the fire. It’s all opulence, all the time, complete with Trump golden toilets and a lifetime subscription to Trump Steaks.
Here’s the catch. There’s no social distancing. You can do whatever your little heart desires. Want to visit the lake to do a little kayaking? Do it! How about drinks and dancing at the on site night club? Do it?
It’s two weeks, zero quarantine, and no pesky government telling you want to do! Bliss.
At the end of two weeks you are required to visit the quarantine center on site for the following two weeks where you’re tested daily. At the end of the two weeks you’re released.
If you test positive you’re put back into the Camp COVID grounds to fend for yourself. No staff on site.
You can, however, choose to call a friend or loved one to come pick you up.
Good luck and enjoy your stay at Camp COVID.