Archive for October 1, 2010

Friday, October 1, 2010

Tuning Canabalt

Adam Atomic:

One of my goals with Canabalt was to make a game that really felt fast, like blazing, sweaty-palms fast. It turns out this isn’t that easy to do in 2D, because the horizon is so close. 3D games get to cheat a little, by letting you stare off into the distance in a way that 2D games tend to struggle with. You can zoom the camera out, so that player can see more of the world, but if you do that then objects appear to be moving more slowly. It’s a really tricky balance.

GraphicConverter 7

Lemke Software has released GraphicConverter 7.0. The interface has been redone in Cocoa, and it generally looks better. There are still tons of preferences and options, most of which I will never use. On the other hand, I suppose part of the charm is that when I discover that I need some esoteric feature or format, I usually find it in GraphicConverter. It’s never been my main image editor, but I always seem to find uses for it.

“Curated” Doesn’t Necessarily Mean “Secure”

Wil Shipley:

So, the better approach to security would be transparency, which is to say users could install applications like the one being written by Peter Gilbert, above, which would tell them when data is being sent to servers, and they could use their own judgment about whether a particular program should be contacting a particular server given their recent actions. With many pairs of paranoid eyes would come much better app validation than Apple could do in a few days.

But this isn’t allowed on iOS right now—the necessary APIs are verbotten, and Apple apparently (and ironically) has written a tool to automatically detect if an application is using APIs Apple doesn’t allow. So, in this case, Apple’s curated approach has potentially made them less secure than Android.

I don’t understand why iOS makes such a big deal about permission to access location data, when any random app, even one that shouldn’t need network access at all, can access my address book, photos, and clipboard and upload them to who-knows-where.