Landing Pages Inside Apps
You can significantly increase user retention by personalizing users' first-run experience based on where they came from. Imagine a user finding your app through "Hotels in Paris" ad or search, and seeing a list of Parisian hotels on the first run of your app. Tapstream's Deferred Deep Links enable this and a lot more.
A few weeks ago there was an extended discussion on the future of Objective-C and I linked to a couple of different stories on it. This week Jason Brennan posted a follow up to his original article. He argues that we're not thinking big enough by just considering a replacement for Objective-C and that we need to think of a bigger picture on how we build software in a more modern way. It's a lengthy article but certainly one worth reading, and looking back on in 5 years.
Unreal Engine 4 available for $19 per month
There has been a gradual trend towards top end game engines transitioning from six-figure licensing costs to lower costs plus a share of revenue but this week everything turned a little upside down with Unreal Engine 4 pricing model going to a very cheap subscription for the full set of tools and source access. iOS is obviously one of the platforms supported and I think this will fit the mobile market extremely well. Things have certainly changed, who would have thought Unity would look like the expensive option this week? CryEngine also announced a very similar deal.
This is really cool. Trace every call to classes, or instances of objects in your code. Add a single source file and header into your project and you can then switch on tracing for any class or object. This is a very useful addition to your debugging toolbox.
Great post by Peter Hosey on which additional warnings he switches on, and why. I think we can all agree that there are certain warnings which are off by default which will not get in the way if switched on, however USE ALL THE WARNINGS is always going to introduce too much noise to be useful. This is based on his 2009 post but updated for our new tools.
Core Data Ensembles
Core Data iCloud sync without Core Data iCloud sync. I first linked to this framework from Drew McCormack in October last year but it reached a 1.0 this week. For me, the big benefit is that the whole system is much more transparent than true iCloud sync which should make debugging easier, not to mention access to the source code so you can see what's actually going on. Add in support for different remote data stores and this looks excellent. Congratulations on 1.0!
Ever thought that writing transform code is a bit long-winded? No? Then let me ask you if you have ever written any non-trivial transform code? Jonathan Wight has put together a small DSL which allows composite transitions to be built up in a much more concise way. If you're writing code with any significant number of transforms then this might clarify and will certainly reduce the transform sprawl.
Reynaldo Gonzales with a concise library to assist in validating JSON before allowing it into your precious objects. Simple but just like Transformer-DSL above, this has the potential to simplify lots of repetitive code in your models.
Immutable Model Objects
It's hard to keep up with all of the quality content that Brent Simmons is posting recently, you should go and subscribe directly. This article is great as always, but I'm linking to it more because of why he wrote it. Brent recently talked about writing down your problem as a method of solving it on Episode 75 of the Talk Show and this is clearly him doing exactly that. It's like a better version of Rubber Duck Debugging because you don't feel anywhere near as stupid when you write it down 😄. You can just hear the gears click into place when that last line of the post gets written, "I think it’s a win, and not much work. I’m going to do it."
This is just gorgeous. Marcus Eckert on his experiments into not only a beautiful animation but a super simple to use tool which can aid with creating them. I don't think anyone would argue that with iOS 7 third party apps have lost some of the little flourishes that were so popular on iOS 6. This technique is beautiful and also fits very well with iOS 7. This is a new blog but it's already full of wonderful stuff, check out the full archive.
UI Prototyping with Quartz Composer and Origami
Pasan Premaratne with a well written and detailed tutorial style post on using Origami and Quartz Composer. I've been playing with this a bit recently and I must admit I found the learning curve quite steep so if you've been struggling with it, this might get you heading in the right direction.
Business and Marketing
App Marketing Daily
Hacker News style site focused on app marketing. Not a huge amount of content so far but that's where you all come in. I've often thought about setting something like this up for iOS Dev Weekly and there isn't really an equivalent forum like this which has good content related to iOS dev. What do you all think, would you use it?
Core Data Potpourri
Paul Goracke with 90 minutes on best practices with Core Data. Recorded at Seattle Xcoders last month, this is definitely worth a watch if you're working with Core Data.
iOS Engineer at Heyday - the story of your life
Heyday is hiring an experienced iOS engineer to help build a beautiful lifelog that automatically records the places you go, things you see, and people you meet. Our small team of 9 based in South Park San Francisco, includes Zac West, who was the lead developer of Adium for over 3 years.
iOS Developer @Centralway in London or Zurich
Centralway is a high-performance company builder. Our team of experts spans all of the key technology and business areas necessary in building truly great internet companies. We're looking for experienced iOS engineers to complete our team in Zürich or in London. If you thrive in intense, rapidly changing environments and are fascinated by technology, we look forward to hearing from you.
iOS Developer @ Booking.com in Amsterdam (visa + relocation included)
The Booking.com iOS apps have been downloaded over 20 million times all over the world - we are looking for highly skilled developers to join our mobile team in the vivid city of Amsterdam. Join our international team and help us to make the best travel app in the world.
You know, I never meant for anyone to take my joke in Issue 133 seriously...
GDC week this week and iOS predictably played a prominent role in many of the announcements, especially around engines. I had hoped to see some news around Oculus Rift and iOS but I guess it's still going to be driven by Android. The idea of a mobile Oculus Rift on any mobile platform is fascinating though.
We also have a new section in this week's issue, Jobs. From today there will also be up to three job postings towards the bottom (so they don't get in the way if you're not looking for work right now) of the email. If you would like to sponsor a job posting then please get in touch. Availability is filling up fast but it's far better than the availability for regular sponsored links which is fully booked until the end of September right now.Dave Verwer