Apple iBook

Will we get an ARM Mac? Probably, maybe? Who knows? /shrug

I’m pretty certain I’ve opined about this before, but my weblog is a mess at the moment and I can’t find the reference to it.

What if the ARM Mac is really an iOS based laptop? Seriously.

Think of the 12in MacBook. Some folks really loved the thing. It was teeny tiny. Just imagine the 12.9in or 11in iPad as a laptop. The darned thing could be super thin and light. It could even have the same square design or Apple could adopt the curved edges of the current MacPro lineup. It doesn’t really matter.

Think about this. It could be slightly heavier than an iPad Pro but lighter than a MacBook Air. That is a class of computer I think a lot of folks would really love.

What if it had a crazy long battery life because they could pour battery into the top and bottom cases? To that end they could move around where everything lives in the computer. They’d have all kinds of space. Full keyboard, full mouse, beautiful display, full touch, and pencil support. Add to that four USB-C ports and you have a potential winner on your hands.

And for the cherry on top I can see Tim Apple stepping out on stage proclaiming _“And we call it, iBook.”_

The virtual crowd goes crazy.


Selfish Man

It’s sunny outside today as I write this. Sitting on the deck, in the shade, birds chirping, and I’m miserable.

### Backing Up

We moved to Charlottesville, Virginia, in November 2019. Yes, another wild adventure. This time we did it to be closer to our daughter, granddaughter, and son-in-law. Being in California with our first granddaughter out on the east coast just wasn’t going to cut it. So, we moved.

I took a gig with [WillowTree]( in Charlottesville and we packed up the house – no easy feat – and started for Virginia. It was a whirlwind of selling home a home and buying another, quickly. We cut out of Exeter, California, Sunday, October 27 at about two in the afternoon and arrived in Virginia Friday, November 1. Three adults, three dogs, and four cats – yes, we’re absolutely insane.

Since we arrived in November the weather was changing. Cool, crisp, mornings and rain, lots and lots of rain. That’s OK. We wanted to live in a place with actual seasons. California is a paradise. Most days are sunny. We were up for a change.

We got change. In January we had our first snow. It was glorious. But mostly we had a lot of those crisp mornings with rain. That’s ok. It’s part of the winter and spring season here. As spring approaches the temperatures go up but you still have plenty of rain mixed with bursts of sunshine.

As we rolled into February the Coronavirus pandemic hit. [Seattle]( was hit hard. By the end of February things were getting serious. I left work on [March 12]( slightly before WillowTree declared all employees should work from home. (Seriously, that was in March? Feels much, much longer ago.)

As I started writing this yesterday – May 2 – I was in a terrible state of mind. With the world in chaos I was only thinking about myself. I was pissed off it was a gorgeous day outside. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, and I was stuck at home. Nothing to do but yard work.

You see. When we got here and the weather had changed to we and rainy I was looking forward to spring. We live in an area rich in history. I love history. I wanted to explore Virginia. Back to D.C. to see the National Archives. Back to Gettysburg. Back to Monticello. We live five miles away from Monticello.

I’d like to explore Virginia Beach and Carter Mountain here in Charlottesville, enjoy the Monticello trail system. Visit the beautiful little towns all around us. So many things to do and see.

But no. Here I sit, at home. Beautiful Saturday and I’m having a pity party. I expect the earliest we’ll be able to get out and explore is in the spring of 2021.

How dare I. People are dying all around us. I need to pull my head out. Consider others. It’s not about Rob Fahrni. It’s about my loved ones, my friends, and my fellow human.

I’m sorry. I’m an idiot. I’m selfish.

I’m gonna work on that.

Stay safe. See you next spring.


Modern Interview Prep

[Brent Simmons]( _”In production code, if a problem like this came up, I’d ask “How the hell did we get here?” and try to backtrack and figure out what insanity caused this, because it’s just not right.”_

This mirrors my experience when I was interviewing back in 2014. Heck, I managed to get an interview at Google for an iOS development job – I can’t remember if it was on Maps or Chrome – and I was blown away by the interview process. I was sent a list of things to study. Not one had to do with iOS development. It was all about algorithms. I was given a month to prepare and a contact at Google that was meant to be a tutor to help me prepare.

Needless to say. I canceled the interview.

Brent is a thoughtful, battle hardened, Mac and iOS developer. He built one of the most beloved Mac applications ever built; [NetNewsWire](

But to most companies today, this means very little, if anything.


I’m an impostor

Today is one of those days I question my ability or usefulness as a software developer.

It seems like 10-year olds are creating stunning applications and web sites and here I sit, two year old simple RSS reader that hasn’t shipped.

I’m struggling with the idea of not shipping the Mac version so I can start work on the application I’ve wanted to write for years and years. I’ve put that app off for so long I probably could’ve shipped it if I’d been dedicated to it for the last ten years.

I started Stream because I wanted a simple project to work on. Simple. Two years later. Still not finished.

I’ve predicted it’ll take at least 10-years to complete the thing I really want to do.

Another point to make. I’m so happy and excited to work on my own projects. It’s the type of excitement I had as a youngster. I couldn’t wait to get to work. I’d arrive about 6:30AM and work until 4PM. Day in and day out.

If only I had that kind of time for my personal projects.


Yes, I want this

[Daniel Gauthier]( _“From the moment you decided to get into iOS development, your career has been coloured by this vague idea that true success in this industry is nearly or completely single-handedly building something that grabs people’s attention. At the end of it all, you don’t just want to be “[Your Name Here]”. No, at the pinnacle of this climb, you want to be known as “[Your Name Here], creator of [Your Brilliant and Beloved App]”. Of course, rationally, you know there are loads of people who are living successful and fulfilling careers as employees at great companies, but a big part of you still feels that, as someone who can competently design and build software, you are uniquely positioned to create your own life’s work. That’s what you’ve been led to believe, anyway. And isn’t that the dream? Wouldn’t it be a shame not to try? You’re tired of deferring your dreams to your future self; it’s time to act!”_

This is how I’ve felt for a decade, at least. A couple years back a friend transferred the code for his blogging application to me. I thought “This is it!” I’m going to get to work on an application loved by many and make my way into the indie development scene. Oh, and yes, I’m going to make a living doing it. Along the way I realized how much work it was going to be. After chatting with folks on Slack and other places I decided I should do something small. Something that I could complete in a short amount of time to prove to myself I could pull it off.

Here I sit. Two years later with [Stream](, my Twitter-like feed reader, about 80% complete. Oh, and I only have the iOS version that far along. The Mac version has a shared core but the UI is just a shell. After missing many self imposed deadlines, a change is jobs, and a move from California to Virginia, I’m finally [back to work on it]( and I’ve made some good headway. But, then I kind of need to do the Mac version, right? Well, maybe not.

As much as I’d love to do the Mac version I may set that aside in favor of doing the thing I’ve always truly wanted to do: a diagramming tool. You see, I worked on a great Windows drawing and diagramming application; [Visio]( I had the pleasure of working with some amazing people for 10-years, over two separate stint with the company. I still miss the people and the product to this very day. It was the best time of my working life, but I digress.

On to the what I’m trying to decide. Do I finish off the Mac version of [Stream]( or do I move ahead with my lifes dream of building a _cross platform_ drawing and diagramming tool? Yes, you read that right, I want it to be cross platform. The idea would be to ship it on iPad first followed by Mac and Windows. My estimate, given the time I have to work on it at home, and how slowly I code, comes in at around 10-years time. Who wants to wait 10-years to complete a project? I don’t really want to but if I want to pull this off I have to put my head down and commit to it. Hell, there’s a chance desktop software will no longer exist in 10-years time. It may all be web stuff (ack!)

When I read Daniel’s piece I said “Yeah, that’s me.” It’s been me for well over a decade. I’ve sat on my butt dreaming about it but never writing a single line of code to pull it off.

I’ve discussed this with my wife over and over and over. I’d love to quit my day job and focus my efforts on my dream. That can’t happen, but I can shift my focus to begin working on the app of my dreams.

Here’s hoping I can get my act together. This is my retirement plan, writing and supporting an application until I drop dead behind the keyboard.


Stream Features and Bug Reporting

I Love RSS![Open Stream for iOS issues](, if you’re interested. I’d imagine some of these will miss the 1.0 cut.

Please add anything you’d like to see or report a bug. I will look through everything reported and will decide what release it should go into or if I’ll do it at all.

I’ve been able to pick up the pace recently, just a bit. It still feels like I have a long way to go, but I do like that I’ve made quite a bit of progress with the last two BETA builds.

I have some bug fixes coming in the next build but I need to work through some UI improvements before doing it.

Watch this space.


Just wanted you two to know MB feeds look good in my upcoming feed reader: Stream. It’s been a long time in coming – and still needs work – but it’s stable and useful today. [@manton]( [@macgenie](


Stream Update

I’ve been working hard to improve performance of feed parsing for so long I’ve completely ignored the UI. It needs a lot of work.

Today I was finally able to spend some time on that. I’ve applied the lovely new timeline cell design from [Tim Van Damme]( and added support for dynamic text. It’s coming together, finally.


Drafting posts for

Since switching to as the publishing system for my weblog I’ve been on the hunt for a good way to write posts in a draft form. I tried Bear and I love how it works, it’s absolutely beautiful. I was really close to purchasing the yearly subscription, then I realized I’m paying for Evernote.

I’m really torn. Both applications sync, both have text editors, but I use Evernote for clipping web pages and organizing by categories and tags. As far as I’m aware Bear doesn’t have anything comparable?

I didn’t realize sync was going to be so important to me. I guess I was spoiled by WordPress. I could start a post and revisit it. doesn’t have such a thing but I have a need to start on my iPhone and finish on my Mac or vice-versa.~~ Update: [ does support drafts]( Thanks, Mitch! If MarsEdit had an iOS version I’d definitely consider pulling the trigger on Mac and iOS versions.

If you’re using Bear or Evernote I’d love to know how you use them. If you have a different solution please share that.


Trump Impeachment

[Teri Kanefield]( _“It’s pure Trump: A rapid, continuous (and exhausting) stream of absurdity and lies. One lie can be managed. A few can be debunked. But stuffing several into each paragraph becomes an effective propaganda technique.”_

Bottom line: Trump is a lying, cheating, asshole of a criminal. Talk about gangster thugs. He’s all of those things. To buy all his bullshit is to show a willingness to destroy democracy and embrace all the things he stands for; greed, cruelty, misogyny.