Archive for September 8, 2022

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Indie Anniversaries

Paul Kim:

It’s been 16 years ago today since Hazel’s first release. Why celebrate the 16th anniversary? Because I thought it was actually 15 years but got the dates wrong. So, to mark the 16th anniversary (or a belated 15th, if you prefer), Hazel is 30% off.

Christian Tietze:

I realized that my official 10th “company” anniversary is just around the corner!

Thanks everyone for joining the AMA yesterday! Was a fun experience :)

We talked about a couple of technical and historic things.

Ken Case (tweet):

Speaking of time flying, today marks the 30-year anniversary of the day we started doing business together as “the Omni Group.”


We’ve seen a lot of operating system releases over the last 30 years—coincidentally, 30 years ago today was also the day that NeXT shipped the NeXTSTEP 3.0 operating system!

Christopher Atlan:

I forgot to tweet this year, but Aug 29 marked 16 year of Letter Opener!


Update (2022-09-09): Peter N Lewis:

@keyboardmaestro is 20 years old this year. Michael Kamprath released Keyboard Maestro in 2002, but I didn’t acquire it until 2004 for the release of version 2.0.

Steve Troughton-Smith:

Tomorrow marks the 15th anniversary of me building apps for iPhone. Before App Store, before iPhone SDK, there was a passionate community of developers exploring that new frontier on jailbroken devices. I built my first app without access to any device, and debugged it via email

Update (2022-09-22): Paul Kafasis (tweet):

20 years ago this month, Rogue Amoeba unveiled Audio Hijack 1.0, the very first version of what has become our flagship product. To celebrate that anniversary, we’ve got a great deal to share with you.

My DropDMG and SpamSieve are also 20 this year.

Nick Heer:

There is something very special about using products made by independent developers like these. It is software with personality, driven by a level of care and passion that is understandably lost in larger organizations. When I am having trouble or want to request a feature enhancement, I can send an email from somewhere in the application and receive a response from a real person who has the power to make things happen. Institutional developers have their place, but I feel an level of individual care from the indie software projects I use on a daily basis.

Accidental Tech Podcast:

🎉 ATP EPISODE 500!!! 🎉

AppleCare+ Unlimited Repairs

Juli Clover:

Apple says that AppleCare+ for iPhone “includes unlimited incidents of accidental damage protection,” with each one subject to service fees. Screen or back glass damage carries a $29 fee, while other accidental damage carries a $99 fee.


Unlimited repairs are also available for the Apple Watch, iPad, and Mac, with the feature applicable to every AppleCare + plan.

Previously, it included 2 repairs per year. Knock on wood, but I haven’t needed AppleCare in a long time, and never for a phone.


AirPods 3 With Lightning-Only Charging Case

Joe Rossignol:

Pricing for the third-generation AirPods with a Lightning case is set at $169 in the United States, compared to $179 for the third-generation AirPods with a MagSafe case, so it seems like there is very limited value in choosing this new option.

It’s hard to believe Apple is adding a SKU with only a $10 difference. At first I thought maybe this was because they were discontinuing AirPods 2, but those are still available for $129. I’ve grown to like wireless charging, but if you don’t want it, why not save more money and get the AirPods 2, since the controls and case lid work better?


Mac App Store and Investing Engineering Time

Christopher Atlan:

We knew that some exceptions had been permitted in the 2018 Mac App Store refresh. However our conversation with Developer Relations and DTS went nowhere.

The existence of an exception was acknowledged, but at the same time not granted to us.


So we came up with a Plan B: sandboxing ksdiff and granting it file access to the file system via back channel to our app.


I should have known better. I knew the stats: fewer than 10% of our users actually run the Mac App Store version. Yet I committed the team to work for what turned out almost a month on tackling all the sandbox issues, creating the entire flow for a command line utility to request file access, and testing it by throwing every workflow at it that we could think of.

It should be noted that sandboxing ksdiff did not actually make anything more secure because, even unsandboxed, if it’s invoked from a sandboxed app it only has access to what that app can access. And, so far, the extra work hasn’t paid off because the app is still in limbo.

At this time, Kaleidoscope 3.6 has been in review for a full month without communication or progress, after an initial quick rejection. Not only is there frustration with the current update, our trepidation grows with regard to the updates we have been planning down the road.


This teaches me that the Mac App Store is no place for developer tools with more complex technical requirements than your average app. Which seems wrong, as Develop is one of the main categories in the App Store app.

Jonathan Deutsch:

I’d go so far to say that any applications that need to read or write files that it did not create (e.g. generic file types or another app’s files) are not suited for being on the Mac App Store.

So not just dev tools but also utilities and pro apps that have complex workflows.

Geoff Hackworth:

Well, that’s rather unsettling:

“We need additional time to evaluate your submission and Apple Developer Program account.”

My account? 😬 I got this after 10 minutes in review for both the free and paid version of an app which has been in the store for almost 8 years.


This ordeal has caused me a great deal of anxiety. I still can’t be sure what crime they suspected me of. They never told me. But I guess I’m not guilty. Although it does seem like I would have been unable to submit apps for the last 15 days. Not guilty, but punished anyway.

Jonathan Deutsch:

In my experience there’s often lots of small-but-cool features often pre-sandbox apps have that aren’t compatible. So joining the MAS means removing them and accepting that you have a worse app (and will likely get customer requests for it or confusion).


Update (2022-09-09): Jonathan Deutsch:

My educated speculation is that upper management is deeply afraid of macOS becoming Windows of ~20 years ago – stricken with malware.

Security restrictions are introduced but there’s no internal incentives to counterbalance these.


WebKit had a great performance philosophy: if you regress performance in one area you need to at least improve it back elsewhere.

I’d love to see this for security features - if one is added, you need to add some workflow/automation/enablement/creativity feature elsewhere :).

Update (2022-09-14): Hunter:

This new thing where App Review asks you to explain how you’re using public API (App Intents, Transferable) and provide a video to get approved is total BS. Infuriating.

Apple Still Sitting on Entitlement Requests

Timo Hetzel:

Let me check my CarPlay entitlement request… ∞ days and counting.


The fact that developers think about separating an app and degrading the user experience because of app review times should sound your alarm bells. Same for HomeKit. Please fix review times for apps with special entitlements.

Anders Borum:

Apple engineers at WWDC: Can’t wait to see what you build.

Apple App Review: We can wait and you will wait.

Wayne Dixon:

I submitted an entitlement request 3 weeks ago and still haven’t heard anything.


Update (2022-09-09): Oskar Groth:

Finally got approved for a DriverKit entitlement after just checks calendar 445 days 💀

Update (2023-02-03): Aaron Pearce:

Been trying to get an advanced HomeKit entitlement since July last year. Last update I heard was in December when I asked for an update and got back that it was escalated. Nothing since.

Update (2023-07-14): Greg de J:

160 days since my request to for @quichebrowser. Takes ~5 weeks to get a reply, where they ask information I already provided, or give wrong instructions contradicting Apple docs.

The Steve Jobs Archive

John Vorhees (Hacker News):

Yesterday, the Code conference held a session featuring Laurene Powell Jobs, Jony Ive, and Tim Cook, who talked about Steve Jobs’ legacy with host Kara Swisher. As part of the event, the trio unveiled the Steve Jobs Archive, an online repository of historical material from Steve Jobs’ life.

The simple, chronologically organized website features quotes and other materials from Jobs’ life, including some that have never been published before.