Archive for September 8, 2015

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Pushing on the Pull Door

Jared Sinclair:

The URL scheme alert view reverses the standard position of the accept and cancel buttons. Make sure your support staff anticipate this confusion when trouble-shooting “I can’t log in via Facebook” bug reports.

Previously: iOS 9 to Block Abuses of -canOpenURL:.

Update (2015-09-08): Jonathan Grynspan:

“iOS 9 only shows URL scheme alert views for host apps linked against iOS 8 or earlier.” This isn’t accurate.

The prompt is not connected to iOS 9’s Info.plist changes, so if that’s what you or Jared is seeing, please file a radar.

Why You Should Upgrade (On Your Own Terms)

Adam C. Engst:

I know many of you are tempted to scream, “Stop this bus! I want to get off!” And many people did just that some years back when the misbegotten OS X 10.7 Lion was on offer — there’s a vocal group still happily (or at least defensively) using 10.6 Snow Leopard. There’s probably still a set of iOS 6 users holding out against the flat look of iOS 7 and iOS 8 too. None of you are wrong. You may be merely postponing a world of upgrade hurt, but you’re not wrong.


I’m not saying that you should drop everything to upgrade as soon as Software Update alerts you to the latest and greatest. In fact, apart from certain security-related updates that would be good to get sooner rather than later, I think waiting a decent amount of time before upgrading makes a ton of sense. Immediate upgrades are for those of us whose business revolves around the latest details — we’re the penguins diving off the ice floe first so the rest of you can jump in without worrying about leopard seals. Wait a bit after a major upgrade, and for a minor update or two to address bugs that became obvious only after widespread public release. We may have early-bird releases of “Take Control of Upgrading to El Capitan” and “El Capitan: A Take Control Crash Course” available now, with updates planed for El Capitan’s release day, but we also continue to refine those books after launch.

So wait if you want, but don’t wait too long. Community knowledge doesn’t go back that far any more — there’s just too much to know, and too many facts that quickly stop being relevant. Options disappear too — drag your feet on upgrading to the mature Yosemite now, and in a month or so, Apple will replace it with El Capitan, and you won’t be able to download a fresh copy of Yosemite, just as you can no longer get a new copy of Mavericks from the Mac App Store.


Milen Dzhumerov:

If your Mac app needs to run background tasks in an energy efficient way, use NSBackgroundActivityScheduler (10.10+)

This class was introduced at WWDC 2014, but it’s not documented in the release notes or in the Foundation class reference. It is, however, explained in the Energy Efficiency Guide for Mac Apps, and there’s a header file with some good comments:

This class provides a Cocoa-level interface to the XPC Activity API (see xpc/activity.h).

It is used to schedule maintenance or background kinds of tasks. These activities are run by the OS at a time that best accommodates system-wide factors like energy, thermal conditions, and CPU usage. If you have activities that run at an interval measured in 10s of minutes or more, then use this class to schedule those activities.

San Francisco’s Rider-Friendly Transit Map

Eric Jaffe (via Simone Manganelli):

Fast forward to today and Primus has turned the insight from that rough early journey into one of the most rider-friendly transit maps you’ll ever see. The redesigned Muni map—co-created by Primus and David Wiggins—immediately indicates frequency through a route line’s thickness. Muni officials adopted it system-wide this April and will update it later this month to reflect a service upgrade.


A handful of other transit systems have delved into weighted frequency maps—D.C.’s Metrobus and Spokane Transit being two strong examples—but for the most part cities have shied away from the approach. The reason may be partly political. Since frequency maps spotlight which parts of town have worse service, they invite criticism that basic maps of service coverage don’t.


It’s also a pedestrian map. “Anyone on transit is by definition a pedestrian,” says Primus. With that in mind, he and Wiggins made the map useful from a walker’s perspective, even as it functions primarily as a transit guide. So they kept an accurate scale (unlike other transit maps that famously distort geography) and showed all streets (labeling 95 percent, in a faint grey).


Daniel Jalkut:

Today I faced a long list of alarms on my iPhone, and decided that I wanted to clean them out. The typical iOS “Edit” interface puts a red “delete” button next to each item, and upon tapping it you must then confirm it by tapping the explicit word “delete” at the other end of the item. Suffice to say: for a list of any significant size, this is very tedious.

On a whim, I decided to give Siri a shot at simplifying the process. I long-pressed the home button, and uttered: “delete all my alarms.”

Too bad there’s no equivalent for clearing out all your photos. You still have to empty the camera roll from the Image Capture application on the Mac.

Nick Heer:

Something like Siri on OS X could radically simplify everything from the most basic commands to much, much more complex tasks.