I spent a good amount of time over the weekend reading Aaron Swartz’s blog, shortly after his untimely passing. In short, I never new him, and so I don’t want to rehash everything that’s been said, but judging by what I’ve read, he was a brilliant person. So I leave you with a few blog entries that I found particularly insightful, interesting, and helpful. Some are longer, some are shorter, but I’d recommend giving them all a read.
It’s not their fault.
I posed a question earlier today about Apple’s new iPad mini pricing. Is there anyone who would have bought the iPad at $299 that won’t purchase it at $329? My guess is no. There are reasons such as brand/price perception, the supposed $299 psychological barrier, and more that I don’t want to really cover, so I’ll pose it as a simple mathematical statement.
Four years ago today, the Apple App Store launched, changing the face of software distribution. Anyone from a curious 13-year old to a grizzled developer who lived through learning Pascal can release an app and hope to strike gold. Even Apple’s own operating systems are distributed with this model now. I distinctly remember my first thoughts on the matter. I was standing in line for the iPhone 3G, not for myself, but for a coworker who I had convinced to upgrade (so I could get his original iPhone). Imagine, the internet in my pocket, anywhere I went. The future had arrived for me. Four years later, this has become commonplace. But I do remember being asked on that line, “so what do you think about this app store?” by a curious line stander. I didn’t have much background actually developing software yet, so I heartily told him “Eh, you can already download apps from Installer, who cares where you get it from?” (Sidenote: Remember Installer?)
iOS 6 ends up bringing a lot of interesting new features to the regular user, and looking over the API differences, not a lot on the developer side of things. iOS 5 was a gigantic leap for developers, starting with ARC, Storyboards, and a bajillion APIs opened up. I’m willing to bet that this is becoming Apple’s calling card. One on, one off, is now to be prevalent in designing both hardware and software.