Aug 23, 2010

I Have Sold My Soul

I feel I must publicly admit this here to you all. I have purchase some Apple products. I have an interest in making apps for the iPad, so I went out and bought one. However it turned out to be fairly useless for development on its own, an actual Mac is necessary. So I picked up a Mac Mini off eBay for dirt cheap and have started working with that.

So what are my thoughts on it? Well, my first thoughts are that it is a pain in the ass. It isn't the interface really (learning a new OS is always tricky, so I'm not really factoring that into my considerations). What I'm talking about is Apple itself. The system is not that old, it is running Tiger, but it is a bit annoying to get things from Apple for it. They seem adamant on trying to get you to purchase Snow Leopard at every turn (which I ended up having to do anyway, since XCode with the correct iOS SDK does not work with Tiger). At least with Windows stuff still works on XP (I can't believe I'm sticking up for Microsoft) without having Windows 7 being stuffed down your throat. However to even things out, Mac software upgrades are far cheaper than Windows ones, so it doesn't hurt that much paying for it if I am considering it as a potential business investment.

Anyway, it might be that I am just not used to the system yet, but I still haven't seen what all the Mac fanboys are raving about. The only thing that I do know at this point is that Apple has bothered me enough that I have absolutely zero desire to purchase any more of their products - although I may end up doing it anyway, depending on how well this whole iPad app thing goes.

What about my Touch Book? Well, I wasn't especially enamoured with it. It was a bit too sluggish for the things I wanted to do and since I bought the iPad I really had no more use for it. I hope the new owner is happy and may it serve him well.

Anyway you can expect a few Objective-C related posts coming up here in the near future.


derjan said...

What type of apps do you want to develop?

You can use JavaScript to write your app. With HTML 5 app cache, you can install your app into the browser. You can use the HTML 5 database for storing your data. There are two proprietary meta tags from Apple, you can add to your HTML. The first allows you to specify a high resolution icon for bookmarks on the home screen. The second allows you to hide the browser controls, if someone opens the page via a home screen bookmark (app mode).

The JavaScript engine of iOS 4 has a JIT compiler and is pretty fast and such web apps are able to run on Android phones too. You can also skip the App Store. Installation simply means open a page in the browser and add a bookmark to the home screen.

But the best is, you don't need any Apple product for development. So come on, stay on open standards!

Rob Britton said...

Hmm, you've given me a good idea. I'm going to attempt developing with both HTML5 and with Apple's SDK, so that I can get a feel for the differences. I'll then post about it later on describing my experiences.

Mike D. said...

When your Mac doesn't hang up on you, you'll know what all the fan boys are raving about.

Apple's strongest point is its integration with its hardware. The options are limited, but those options work.

Rob Britton said...

I actually ended up getting sick of the Mac after a few weeks, and sold everything off. I'll be sticking to Ubuntu after all!