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From the Editor, March 2009

Volume Number: 25
Issue Number: 03
Column Tag: Editorial

From the Editor, March 2009

Last month, MacTech sent out a call for participation. We heard some wonderful feedback, so please, keep the conversation open! One trend that seemed to repeat and validate last month's assertion is that we're serving a broad base: people new to the Mac platform, developers, System Administrators-each learning their own craft, but looking to learn from other disciplines (particularly Sys Admins looking to learn more from the development realm).

Another thing we'd like to talk about is vigilance. Most of us encounter bugs while using OS X. Bugs in API calls, incorrect file formats and apps that flat out run incorrectly or crash. Yes, it takes some of your time, but please, keep the pressure on Apple to fix these bugs! To reiterate: Apple prioritizes fixes based on which bugs are affecting the most people. They have no way of knowing unless they hear about it (see "Major Releases, Benchmarks, and Feedback" in the August 2008 issue of MacTech to learn the most effective way to report particular issues). We're at a unique time in Apple's existence: whereas Mac OS was once completely closed-on many levels-not only are many parts of the OS now open source, but there are features and fixes that have been incorporated that people can point to and say, "that's there because of my feedback!"

This month brings us back to port-Macworld reality: we have work to get done! Our cover this month represents Noah Gift's continuing series on directory service integration with non-Open Directory systems, namely a Linux server running OpenLDAP and Samba. Frankly, this is where Apple shines in the Enterprise. Thanks to standard and very flexible directory and authentication mechanisms, OS X can fit into any infrastructure, really.

Also, you'll find Dave Dribin covering a subject near to my heart: Unit Testing. (hmmmm... does that say something about me?). Unit Testing is an incredibly important practice for developers and system administrators alike. We're thrilled to have Dave present this introduction to Unit Testing using OCUnit. By the way: if you haven't already heard Dave's CocoaCast interview, go check it out at http://www.cocoacast.com/?q=node/194. MacTech will have more Unit Testing coverage in the future, from other points of view.

We continue our introduction to learning Python on the Mac, this month covering modules. Marcus Zarra delves into Core Data and how to migrate saved data to the latest version. Rich Warren keeps showing us how to create a "productivity" style iPhone application (please see the note on this article - I inadvertently ran part 2 out of order. Mea culpa. Note that we're running the article, in its entirety on our web site).

Kool Tools and a great MacTech Spotlight round out this issue. Thanks for your support, and we'll see you next month!

Edward Marczak,

Executive Editor

 

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