Apple PR had a busy week! Many of the announcements don’t directly affect developers, but there are more than a few dev related things to highlight. For starters, many of you will be interested to read about the changes in ARKit 1.5 (Apple releasing an significant a SDK change mid-cycle – unheard of!) 🐲
Swift Playgrounds is also being pushed forward, with the new ability for creators to provide content with subscriptions. This was always a huge opportunity since the first playgrounds appeared on iPad and I’m really looking forward to see the great instructional material developers come up with.
Last but not least, we’re seeing Apple push macOS forward quickly too. With January 30 being the last date to submit new 32-bit apps to the Mac App Store and Xcode 9.3, now in beta, including tools to help bring apps to 64-bit. However, this update also requires macOS High Sierra so those of you who don’t like to update to the latest versions of macOS will soon have no choice. 😣
Apple has never been afraid to push software forward quickly and this tends to be good for users, and good for developers who rely on a stable, constantly improving operating system to build apps for. Overall, I’m feeling pretty confident in the state of iOS. 👍
The Swift Forums are officially open! If you have suggestions for Swift Evolution or questions about using using the language. These forums are being watched by the Swift team at Apple, so you can often get answers right from the horse’s mouth! 🐴
Who said the days of iOS and Mac conferences are behind us? Here’s a very thorough list of all the conferences going on this year around the world. Conferences are great places to learn a lot and meet some great people, so give this list a look to see if a conference might be in your future.
The top mobile companies like Lyft, Reddit, and EA Games rely on Instabug to iterate faster and enhance their app quality. Instabug lightweight SDK allows developers to receive detailed bug reports directly from testers and users. Instabug attaches screenshots, screen recordings, device details and repro-steps with each report. Try Instabug now – Just one line of code to integrate the SDK!
Marcin Krzyżanowski with an interesting new site, a Swift playground on the server. Either get started with the online version or host and run your own instance of it. Support for the SPM and custom frameworks makes this quite a flexible tool already. As far as online code editors go, this site looks very well done! 🏆
Xcode power users would do well to learn about these URL schemes that haven’t got much attention since they were released in Xcode 9. I see a couple schemes I could take advantage of in my own workflow – take a look to see if there’s any that would make your life easier. ⚒
Flows are at the center of many common user interactions – rather than show the user a long, single-page form to fill out, the app gathers data one screen at a time. This looks very clean to the user, but how do we make that process look good from a code perspective? Ivan Damjanovic discusses how he approaches this problem by breaking it down into composable steps. 👷♂️
The project description says it all: “Never use NSSearchPathForDirectoriesInDomains again. Never.” This framework by Oleg Dreyman makes managing your app’s file system extremely simple, allowing you to strongly access all the folders you need on a regular basis. File management on iOS isn’t the easiest, and this project makes it so much better.
Corner radii have had some annoying restrictions in the past that made them more difficult to use. This blog post goes through everything new in iOS 11 that allows them to be more powerful and flexible than ever!
If you’re in the business of framework development, Dave DeLong’s got a trick to make your life a whole lot easier – use this one small trick to simplify imports forever! 🤠
Surprisingly, Apple left off the network activity indicator on the iPhone X, likely due to space constraints next to the notch. For apps that require a lot of network activity, it may be worthwhile to bring this indicator back for users concerned with data limits. Ortwin Gentz created an elegant replacement that appears in the top-right corner of the screen that is the perfect solution to this problem (other than Apple bringing the indicator back in future releases).
App icon corner radii have been the bane of designers’ existences for years – and now the iPhone X brings this problem to app design as well! The corners and the notch on the new form-factor are not simple rounded rectangles, making it more difficult to replicate and to design for. Brad Ellis provides a nice breakdown of what these changes look like to keep in mind while designing user interfaces for the device.
Chris Eidhof, Matt Gallagher, and Florian Kugler’s new book (now in early access) is focused on better ways to structure iOS codebases. Based on what I’ve heard about their previous books, this book should come out really well – and they’re releasing videos to go along with the book, if that’s in your wheelhouse ⭐️
Always remember to take off your watch before murder. 😵