Apple Predictions & Development Pace

Apple’s pace of development is a curious thing. At times like the iPad launch, Apple seems completely ahead of the game. At other times their rate of advancement seems frustratingly slow. Apple will lead the way on faster WiFi standards, better displays, better battery life, voice control, or even new device classes, but not issue fairly basic updates to iOS’s home screen or photo viewer for years. At first blush this seems inconsistent.

Hard Truths

Last week I mentioned to a friend of mine that I hadn’t made as much progress as I’d hoped on one of my current projects. He consoled me, saying the standard lines about how it happens to the best of us and that I’ll get where I want to be soon, but instead of feeling better, I found myself suprisingly angry. It struck me that what I wanted was not approval but disapproval.

Liability on a Chip

Early this year Apple shipped the version 5.2 software update for the Apple TV, enabling support for Bluetooth keyboards. This feature was definitely a welcome addition but not one I was expecting—I had no idea the Apple TV even had Bluetooth hardware in it. Curious, I found a tear down of the device and looked for the Bluetooth chipset. The BCM 4330 used looks like a fantastic chip. It supports wireless a/b/g/n, Bluetooth, and even has an FM transceiver.

Aging

Aging is a curious thing. You don’t feel any older until one day someone tells you you’re too old for something and you think “What?! I’m not any older than I was last time I did that!" And of course you’re wrong, because you’re always older than you were at any other time you bothered to wonder about how old you were. We choose to confront our aging in one lump sum every year because the threat of a birthday is easier to cope with than the reality that we are slowly advancing towards death every day.

I Suck at Stickers

I’m really terrible at stickers. I tend to just amass them, saving them for some sort of theoretical perfect application. Like one-shot Final Fantasy items I’ll carefully preserve through 80 hours of gameplay until there’s no game left to use them in and all the fun is gone. I’m gonna try to do better. I have a personal conviction that collecting is a disease, and this is nearly the same thing.

100 MPH in the Wrong Direction

It’s easy to go 100 miles per hour in the wrong direction and think you’re accomplishing something by your efforts and when you arrive in a strange place and finally stop to ask where you are you wonder how you got so off-track when you tried so hard. But of course it’s the most basic principle of reality that, as Lao-Tse put it, if we don’t change where we’re going we’ll end up where we’re headed.

Buddhist Acceptance

I’ve probably written about Buddhism two dozen times but never published a word of it. I think that’s owing to the fact that I don’t feel a sense of expertise, only an acute interest. Perhaps that’s not the best approach since even the masters of Buddhism don’t claim mastery. I’ve never called myself a Buddhist because I’ve never been a disciple, but rather one fortunate enough to be warmed by simple proximity to its ideas.

Accept it, Ubiquitous Computing is Here to Stay

I have to admit I’m pretty excited about Google Glass. It’s a big step forward for lifelogging, for augmented reality, and for ubiquitous computing of all kinds. I haven’t gotten my hands on Glass personally, but it really feels like there’s good reason to be excited. Tech blogger Robert Scoble recently wrote: I will never live a day of my life from now on without it (or a competitor). It’s that significant.

Frictionless Project Organization for iOS

Originally posted on the OrgSync Dev Blog (http://devblog.orgsync.com/2013/04/05/frictionless-project-organization-for-ios/), but that site no longer exists, so I’ve reposted it here. There comes a time in every MVC(-ish) app’s life when it starts to get a bit heavy. Sure, a few out-of-place lines of code here or there don’t hurt too much when the codebase is young and agile, but in a middle-aged app they start to be a concern. Slovenly habits beget more slovenly habits; refactorings don’t come as easily as they used to.

Big Ruby Presentation Round Up

Originally posted on the OrgSync Dev Blog (http://devblog.orgsync.com/2013/03/04/big-ruby-presentation-round-up/), but that site no longer exists, so I’ve reposted it here. Last week the OrgSync development team was out en masse at Big Ruby Conf in our own backyard of Dallas, TX. We had a great time and listened to so many fantastic talks that it’s hard to keep track of them all. To help with this problem I decided to put together a complete list of talks replete with links to slide decks.