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This is the Apple I love
As much as I have been wishing for an App Store and SDK for the Apple TV for a long time (I'm much less excited about the perpetual iWatch rumours) Pieter Omvlee makes a great point in this article that Apple is at its best right now with only these two core platforms to worry about. If the "new product categories" end up not materialising this year, don't forget that's not necessarily a bad thing as you read about it on your iOS 8 device that isn't crashing 😍.
It's important to note that the discussion of the last few weeks around sustainability for indie iOS and Mac developers has been around a small subset of the total market who are trying to make a living through selling paid apps. Apple sent us all a little reminder of that this week by publishing this page on their European sites with impressive numbers related to jobs created by the Apple software and hardware ecosystem. Yes, this page includes things like jobs created in their retail stores but it's easy to forget that despite it being very challenging to make a living off paid apps, there are so many new opportunities around the App Store.
The Dangers of Ruby Gems
Yes, you're still reading iOS Dev Weekly and not Ruby Weekly but this article applies just as much to CocoaPods as it does to Ruby Gems. Mike Knepper sums up the potential dangers of blindly importing third party code into your project, regardless of the language or platform. Does this mean that Gems (or Pods) are bad? Absolutely not. Should we consider carefully every piece of third party code in our apps? Absolutely.
Mattt Thompson released a new version of Shenzhen this week, the utility for creating and uploading IPA archives to various services. The big news is that builds can now be uploaded directly to iTunes Connect using this tool. If you're new to iOS development and haven't come across the Nomad CLI tools before then you'll want to check out the whole suite of tools, not just Shenzhen.
Self Sizing Table View Cells
How much time has been wasted over the last 7 years in writing dynamic table cell sizing code? I don't know exactly but it's a lot 😎. The good news is that iOS 8 finally gives us a good solution to the problem and Keith Harrison has all the details you need.
Just like last year Sam Davies has been putting together a series of blog posts on new iOS 8 features and it's a great way to remind yourself that there is more to learn right now than just a new language. I'm sure there will be more posts added to this list as we get closer to release so keep your eye on this page.
Efficient JSON in Swift with Functional Concepts and Generics
Tony DiPasquale with a look at parsing JSON in Swift. You may have noticed quite a few posts since June on this subject and wondered why something so "trivial" is suddenly a hot issue. Tony looks into the details of the problem and then implements a solution using some concepts from functional programming and generics.
Take This Code and Sign It
As of 10.9.5 (and 10.10 when it's released) if your Mac app is signed with an older version 1 signature then Gatekeeper will not allow it to launch! Apple announced this in TN2206 and the change is going live fairly soon (10.9.5 is already in beta). Daniel Jalkut has more details, and a good follow up post as well. If you have an App on the Mac App Store, you need to read this as you may need to do a new build and get it through review before 10.9.5 hits.
Updating for Modern iOS Design
I really liked this post by Ryan Dillon on the design challenges of updating his metronome app to fit well with the design style of iOS 7 and 8. It's easy to imagine how an app using stock controls will look and feel with the new style but it's much harder with an app based around a completely custom (but suitable) UI like this. The solution is not simply a case of removing some textures and replacing them with flat colours, but is more about changing the "feel" of the app with better animations and touch interactivity.
Business and Marketing
App Store Longevity and Freshness
I linked to David Smith's Purging the Back Catalog piece back in Issue 87 and agreed that apps should be penalised in search results for lagging behind with device and operating system support. This week he has taken another look and investigated exactly how stale the App Store is and the results are quite surprising.
Killer user onboarding starts with a story
So if making money is hard on the App Store, let's learn how to do it properly. The first few minutes inside your app are absolutely critical in terms of ensuring a user launches your app again. In this article, Samuel Hulick takes a look at some of the techniques for making sure that those first few moments are successful.
iOS Developer - theScore, Toronto
You will be working with a team of smart, friendly, and dedicated developers in one of Toronto’s top Dev shops. As part of the development team, you will work along side a team of expert mobile developers from other platforms to deliver a seamless sports app experience to 5.5 million sports fans across all mobile and tablet devices.
iOS Engineer @ Scribd
As an iOS Engineer at Scribd, you'll have the opportunity to learn from our small but excellent (if we do say so ourselves!) team and solve real challenges for an app that is more than just the hottest game - we truly believe that we're building a meaningful product, and that we can get people to read more by making reading easier and more beautiful on mobile devices.
Senior iOS Engineer at Citrix GoToAssist, Copenhagen
GoToAssist, the leading Remote Support tool used by thousands of customers worldwide, is looking for a Senior iOS Engineer to join us in our brand new office in beautiful Copenhagen. You will help lead our mobile team in developing new and exciting products in the area of customer care.
A delightful, illuminating history of Illustrator
Fascinating documentary from Adobe.
So it's beta 5 week and new builds of Xcode 6, iOS 8 and Yosemite have all landed in our laps over the last few days. Along with the software came a whole new set of changes to Swift (Airspeed Velocity has a good summary of the differences). However, it's easy to forget that as well as having to learn a new language, there are a whole load of iOS 8 goodies that we should all be getting to grips with at the same time so I'll try and keep my coverage a little more balanced than it has been over last few weeks. Enjoy!Dave Verwer