TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Apr 96 Viewpoint
Volume Number:12
Issue Number:4
Column Tag:Viewpoint

Viewpoint

By Scott T Boyd, Editor Emeritus

While everyone else takes pot-shots at Apple, I’ve got to think that developers face a tremendous set of challenges. We’ve all got plenty on our plates just trying to build cool stuff for the Macintosh. The last thing we need is an entire media machine nay-saying the platform, especially when developers have rarely faced such a wide array of opportunities.

The Macintosh developer has long had to deal with people who question the merit of developing for the Mac’s smaller market share. In fact, each of us probably has a sophisticated litany of justifications, good for dealing with friends, neighbors, co-workers, family, and people we bump into in computer stores. Well, I don’t know about you, but my real reason for doing Macintosh development is simple - Macintosh is cool. I still remember the mind-boggling paradigm shift I felt the first time I saw the interface. My notion of computing changed forever.

As I learned to build Macintosh software, I came to know not only the machine, but also the Macintosh Way. Guy Kawasaki popularized the phrase and offered cogent lessons for developers, but the Macintosh Way was evident even to those who didn’t benefit from his writings.

Boldness to innovate

The Macintosh screamed, “My inventors went way out on a limb when they built me!” While the rest of the world was clamoring for a faster, cheaper IBM PC-clone with more RAM and disk, a team of upstarts built what they thought a computer should really be. A graphical interface, a mouse, a synergistic blending of hardware/software, and even a large set of standardized routine libraries for programmers (complete with late-binding for those routines).

Insistence on excellence

Feature after feature, Macintosh pushed the limits of technology to benefit users. No one offered a CRT with square pixels, but Macintosh had them. And they were at a 1:1 ratio, making life for developers much sweeter.

Auto-inject/auto-eject floppies. What can I say? It was cool, and users learned to love them.

Documentation, well written and designed to serve the needs of real programmers.

Confidence they’d come

When they built Macintosh, the total market size was zero. There was absolutely no market whatsoever for it. Nevertheless, they pressed ahead, built it, and then did everything it took to build a market for it. Many of those efforts worked less well than others, but twenty-two million machines later, I must say, I’m impressed.

Thinking back to the early days, Apple wooed developers vigorously. Documentation was early, cheap, and plentiful. The developer program was free, and developers got excellent prices on equipment. Frankly, without those prices, I don’t know that I would ever have been able to afford to join in the fun. Developers formed a sense of community and camaraderie, and some energetic souls at Apple found lots of ways to encourage us along the way. Some even went way out of their way to seed young, unproven college kids with an alpha version of MPW (thanks Technostud!), building a sense of excitement that led to me losing so much sleep that I started having those dreams where I find myself realizing that I have a final exam and I forgot to attend any of the classes (oh, come on now, admit it - you’ve had these, too, right?).

The Macintosh Way

Coolness. That’s what drew me to the Macintosh. The product, the company, the community, and the vast possibilities, all built up coolness.

OK, so that’s how many of us got into this business. Now we’re surrounded by “realists”, nay-sayers who would tell us that we’re wasting our time on the Macintosh. Now, you might suspect that I’d say one of two things. For one, I might say, “Defend the Macintosh at all costs. We’re too deeply vested to turn back now.” On the other hand, I might say, “Look, Windows has won, Apple has lost, and the Macintosh can’t ever catch up, so why fight it. Go where the market is.”

Well, I won’t say either one of those things. Remember why I got into this business? Coolness. I trusted my gut instincts and went where the action was. While I’ve never believed that Apple had an exclusive on coolness (in fact, they lately seem to have discovered a wellspring of “interesting” behavior that challenges their innate coolness), I’ve taken Apple’s coolness for granted for years.

What’s my take on all this then? Simple. Go for the coolness. Macintosh offers lots of it, and a whole host of Macintosh developers couldn’t ever exhaust the possibilities. By the same token, coolness lurks in other places, too.

“Going to the coolness” suggests that coolness always comes from somewhere else. Let me suggest this - in the quest for coolness, sometimes you may simply have to take the coolness with you, and that applies whether you’re exploring a new platform, or unearthing new treasures on an old favorite. That’s the Macintosh Way.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

BitTorrent Sync 2.0.82 - Sync files secu...
BitTorrent Sync allows you to sync unlimited files between your own devices, or share a folder with friends and family to automatically sync anything. File transfers are encrypted. Your information... Read more
Google Drive 1.20 - File backup and shar...
Google Drive is a place where you can create, share, collaborate, and keep all of your stuff. Whether you're working with a friend on a joint research project, planning a wedding with your fiancé, or... Read more
Simon 4.0.3 - Monitor changes and crashe...
Simon monitors websites and alerts you of crashes and changes. Select pages to monitor, choose your alert options, and customize your settings. Simon does the rest. Keep a watchful eye on your... Read more
Vitamin-R 2.23 - Personal productivity t...
Vitamin-R creates the optimal conditions for your brain to work at its best by structuring your work into short bursts of distraction-free, highly focused activity alternating with opportunities for... Read more
iDefrag 5.0.0 - Disk defragmentation and...
iDefrag helps defragment and optimize your disk for improved performance. Features include: Supports HFS and HFS+ (Mac OS Extended). Supports case sensitive and journaled filesystems. Supports... Read more
PCalc 4.2 - Full-featured scientific cal...
PCalc is a full-featured, scriptable scientific calculator with support for hexadecimal, octal, and binary calculations, as well as an RPN mode, programmable functions, and an extensive set of unit... Read more
FileZilla 3.10.2 - Fast and reliable FTP...
FileZilla (ported from Windows) is a fast and reliable FTP client and server with lots of useful features and an intuitive interface. Version 3.10.2: Note: Now requires a 64-bit Intel processor.... Read more
The Hit List 1.1.11 - Advanced reminder...
The Hit List manages the daily chaos of your modern life. It's easy to learn - it's as easy as making lists. And it's powerful enough to let you plan, then forget, then act when the time is right.... Read more
Bartender 1.2.32 - Organize your menu ba...
Bartender lets you organize your menu bar apps. Features: Lets you tidy your menu bar apps how you want. See your menu bar apps when you want. Hide the apps you need to run, but do not need to... Read more
ClamXav 2.7.5 - Free virus checker, base...
ClamXav is a free virus checker for OS X. It uses the tried, tested, and very popular ClamAV open source antivirus engine as a back end. I hope you like and use ClamXav a lot and that it helps keep... Read more

Protect Yourself from an Onslaught of Ca...
Surprise Attack Games has announced a Cat-astrophic new physics puzzler called Fort Meow! In the game, a young girl named Nia finds her grandfather’s journal which triggers an all mighty feline attack! Why do the cats want the journal? Who knows,... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – Jelly Reef will be Game Oven’...
GDC 2015 – Jelly Reef will be Game Oven’s Last Hurrah, and it Seems like a Good Note to Go Out on Posted by Rob Rich on March 4th, 2015 [ permalink ] It’s sad knowing that Game Oven ( | Read more »
daWindci Deluxe Review
daWindci Deluxe Review By Campbell Bird on March 4th, 2015 Our Rating: :: BLUSTERY PUZZLESUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad This updated puzzle game offers some creative gameplay and new mechanics, but still suffers from... | Read more »
Dungeon Hunter 5 Coming on March 12
Gameloft has excitedly announced that Dungeon Hunter 5 is on its way! Once again, you will adventure across the land of Valenthia exploring dungeons and fighting monsters. The game will have a new asynchronous multiplayer mode called Strongholds... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – The Sandbox 2 is Coming, and...
GDC 2015 – The Sandbox 2 is Coming, and Now it has Textures! | Read more »
Warner Bros. Interactive Announces Mort...
Mortal Kombat X, by Warner Bros. and NetherRealm Studios, will be a a free-to-play fighting/card-battle Mortal Kombat game. The game promises card collecting, multiplayer team combat, classic characters such as Scorpion, Sub-Zero and Raiden, and the... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – Piloteer is Whitaker Trebella...
GDC 2015 – Piloteer is Whitaker Trebella’s Latest Project, and it’s Definitely Something DIfferent Posted by Rob Rich on March 3rd, 2015 [ permalink ] You know | Read more »
PangoLand Review
PangoLand Review By Amy Solomon on March 3rd, 2015 Our Rating: :: COME VISIT PANGO AND FRIENDSUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad PangoLand is an open-ended world full of familiar characters, bright colors and interactive... | Read more »
Knights of Pen & Paper is Leveling U...
With the roll of a die and a critical success, Paradox Interactive has announced Knights of Pen & Paper 2! You’ll be taking your place at the table once again in this sequel to Knights of Pen & Paper +1 Edition. The game will introduce the... | Read more »
GDC 2015 – Project Highrise is an Intere...
GDC 2015 – Project Highrise is an Interesting Idea from SomaSim Posted by Rob Rich on March 3rd, 2015 [ permalink ] You might know SomaSim best from their gold rush sim, 1849< | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Mac Pros on sale for up to $279 off MSRP
Amazon has Mac Pros in stock and on sale for up to $279 off MSRP. Shipping is free: - 4-Core Mac Pro: $2725.87, $273 off MSRP (9%) - 6-Core Mac Pro: $3719.99, $279 off MSRP (7%) Read more
Sale! 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros for up to $...
B&H Photo has 13″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $205 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 13″ 2.6GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro: $1219.99 save $80 - 13″ 2.... Read more
Another Tranche Of IBM MobileFirst For iOS Ap...
IBM has announced the next expansion phase for  its IBM MobileFirst for iOS portfolio, with a troika of new apps to address key priorities for the Banking and Financial Services, Airline and Retail... Read more
Sale! 15-inch Retina MacBook Pros for up to $...
B&H Photo has the new 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $250 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $... Read more
WaterField Designs Introduces the Minimalist...
With Apple Pay gaining popularity, Android Pay coming in May 2015, and loyalty cards and receipts that can be accessed from smartphones, San Francisco’s WaterField Designs observes that it may be... Read more
Sale! 15-inch 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro for $...
 Best Buy has the 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $1774.99 $1799.99, or $225 off MSRP. Choose free home shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Price valid for online orders... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro (refurbished) avai...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros available for $170 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.5GHz... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $100 o...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999.99 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. Read more
27-inch 3.5GHz 5K iMac in stock today and on...
 B&H Photo has the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac in stock today and on sale for $2299 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for... Read more
Apple Launches Free Web-Based Pages and Other...
Apple’s new Web-only access to iWork productivity apps is a free level of iCloud service available to anyone, including people who don’t own or use Apple devices. The service includes access to Apple... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail Sales...
**Job Summary** As an Apple Solutions Consultant (ASC) you are the link between our customers and our products. Your role is to drive the Apple business in a retail Read more
*Apple* Pay Automation Engineer - iOS System...
**Job Summary** At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring passion and dedication to your job Read more
Sr. Technical Services Consultant, *Apple*...
**Job Summary** Apple Professional Services (APS) has an opening for a senior technical position that contributes to Apple 's efforts for strategic and transactional Read more
Event Director, *Apple* Retail Marketing -...
…This senior level position is responsible for leading and imagining the Apple Retail Team's global engagement strategy and team. Delivering an overarching brand Read more
*Apple* Pay - Site Reliability Engineer - Ap...
**Job Summary** Imagine what you could do here. At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.