MacBook Pro: One Week Later

I’ve now had my MBP for one week of semi-active use. My primary machine at work has been a 4-year old Dell 17″ Insipron loaded with Windows7 x 64. Over the past week I’ve found a lot to love about my new Mac, notwithstanding the abiliity to actually run the iPhone Simulator in a resolution that actually fits it on the screen. I’ve loaded Parallels 5 and it’s really taken care of the necessary evil of running PC apps on my Mac. It’s seamless, reasonably fast (once the VM is running in my session) and it totally took the Win7 install perfectly.

I’ve also loaded some of the Pro Apps, lamely Logic. I’d like to spend a bit more time with it but I just haven’t had the time. I’ve cheked out some of the tutorials over at macprovideo.com, but I haven’t purchased anything yet. Some big changes are coming in my career that should allow me the time to do some of those things. For now I’m settling for ramping back up in the iPhone SDK (OS4 baby!) and following along with the StanfordU classes. Now that I’ve got a legit machine hopefully I’ll be submitting something to the App Store soon.

iPhone OS 4.0

I’m sure you can read up elsewhere on the interwebs about some of the more critical features of the upcoming iPhone OS4 release. What I’d really like to concentrate on is a new clause that I signed yesterday involving development and use of 3rd-party IDE’s or non ObjC languages. The critical portion is reproduced here:

Applications may only use Documented APIs in the manner prescribed by Apple and must not use or call any private APIs. Applications must be originally written in Objective-C, C, C++, or JavaScript as executed by the iPhone OS WebKit engine, and only code written in C, C++, and Objective-C may compile and directly link against the Documented APIs (e.g., Applications that link to Documented APIs through an intermediary translation or compatibility layer or tool are prohibited).

This ends Adobe’s attempt to become a bit more relevant in the web space and I honestly feel a bit sorry for them. Flash has enjoyed being the king of the web for so long they’ve grown a bit complacent. However, if someone tried to convince me 5 years ago that the next battleground would be in the mobile device space and that Apple (ha!) would be on the forefront I would’ve laughed.

So, back to the changes in the dev agreement. My girlfriend’s cousin is currently a Java developer and has been dabbling a bit in iPhone dev, but only through a middle-ware tool called AlcheMo or Flash’s upcoming CS5. This has been his only expsoure to the OS because it would be a challenge for him to learn ObjC this late in the game– in his defense, he didn’t start out as a C programmer so I can understand a bit of his frustration. It isn’t as though he’ll be unable to develop for the iPhone, but he’ll need to do so: a) using a Mac and b) using XCode. As someone who started from the ground up one of these is a bit of a financial investment which is why I started with a Hackintosh.iPhone OS 4 Logo

On the flip side Apple is doing what they’ve always done: encourage shift to their platform. I’m more than happy to develop on a Mac and use one as my primary machine day to day. However the work that I do does occasionally require Windows so I will dual-boot.

iPhone OS4 Outed!

Apple is in the middle of a press event right now detailing some of the major features of the next iPhone OS release, due out in Summer 2010. I’ve read that there will be a Developer Preview released today.

My only problem currently is that I’m still awaiting a MacBook Pro refresh (due in January mind you) that would allow me to migrate to Snow Leopard which is the only thing the current SDK supports (sadly). One of the larger requested features, Multitasking is now available and it looks very sweet. They’ve demonstrated the audio library so Pandora can finally exist in the background as you run other apps, and Skype(!!) maintaining a background status while you’re using the phone for other things.

It’s really exciting but I definitely need some new development hardware if I’m going to take advantage of any of this cool stuff. More later.