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Apple hates Developers Developers Developers Developers

Just got back from WWDC ’06 and all I can say is “it’s amazing that anyone develops software for the macintosh at all.” Apple (like Microsoft) is continually trying to use their 3rd party software developers as a billy club to bring their users onto the latest OS. Apple (like Microsoft) is trying to get their 3rd party developers to adopt a new development language that is locked into their platform (but both claim that it isn’t). However, Apple (unlike Microsoft), pretends that all their developers have embraced this new language and new OS when all evidence is to the contrary. In session after session, Apple employees surveyed the attendees, asking “How many of you use C++, Objective C, Objective C++?” Each time, the answer was overwhelmingly C++, which I imagine was the result in each year previous. Yet, every new Apple API is in Objective C, every code sample was in Objective C. The new APIs look really fun. I bet we’ll see some awesome shareware when Leopard comes out. The professionals (especially those writing cross platform apps) and Apple’s high-end products will continue to ignore these new APIs as they always have.

You add this continual dismissal of developers needs with Apple’s insane secrecy and poor documentation and it seems amazing that professionals embrace this platform at all. I came into this (expensive) conference as a die-hard-mac-fan-boy and now I’m feeling much less so. I still like using macs, but developing for the mac seems much more a chore than a joy, especially compared to windows.

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