Apple must hate me, and most of you too

So I’m checking out the iPhone SDK this weekend. But I’m checking it out window shopping style because I can’t actually use or touch any of it. It’s like that JVC car stereo head unit I wanted back when I was 18 with no steady income. I could see it at the store. I could dream about it. I thought it looked really cool. But I couldn’t take it home and have my way with it. The iPhone SDK is just like that. How did we get to this point? How is it that an eager developer such as myself has absolutely no access to a a toolkit that would allow me to create products which help raise the visibility of a major platform owned by the same company that makes the toolkit? It’s all the result of the assumption many engineers have that everyone shares their vision. In other words, because I’m running Windows Vista SP47 everyone else must be as passionate about Windows upgrades and as paranoid about system updates so they should also be running Vista SP47.

Here’s the real problem. I got a Macbook pro, a pretty recent model. The iPhone SDK lists OS X 10.5 as a requirement. I’m running Tiger 10.4. I haven’t upgraded to Leopard. I mean I could, but why should I? My primary development is mostly Java and from what I hear Leopard takes a dump on JDK 5 and higher. I don’t even know if it supports JDK1.4.2. So an upgrade would be counter productive for me. Even if I wasn’t a Java developer, why should I spend how many more dollars for the upgrade? Just to develop for the iPhone? If Apple really wants to entice me to upgrade they should do so with a shiny new JDK release on Leopard. Lastly, I started the download of the iPhone SDK yesterday before I was certain of the system requirements. At 2.1GB my download monitor was reporting 2 1/2 weeks to complete the transfer. (Ok, my router got a little glitched and started affecting my throughput reducing my 1.5 DSL to less than 28.8K dial-up but that’s a whole ‘nuther topic.) I thought the JDK was getting beefy when they stuffed a DBMS and started approaching the 100MB threshold.

In all, yes – I’d like to use the iPhone SDK. I like what I see in the XCode demos. (I wanna see how the latest XCode stuff compares with IntelliJ Idea.) I’m eager to start. There’s just this hurdle in my way and I’m not sure if I’m ready to jump.

2 thoughts on “Apple must hate me, and most of you too

  1. I couldn’t agree more. I was in the middle of downloading an OS X 10.4.1 VMWare image when I came across this post so that I could use the iPhone SDK. I was not aware that OS X 10.5 or greater is required. I have only Linux, XP and Vista boxes and I do not plan on buying a Mac anytime soon. I also agree that Apple has been crapping on Java developers lately, including Steve Jobs bashing of Java in regards to Blue-Ray technology in addition to taking so long to support Java 1.6 in the latest OS X when soon Sun will release Java 1.7. I guess all I can do at this point is develop with Android and hope that the Google phone will be as clean as the iPhone.

  2. Yeah, and as far as Java being today’s COBOL and objective C being the linguine-de-frankfurt? Maybe it’s me but I just don’t get it. I’ll take JDK1.1 over the latest and greatest of objective C in a heartbeat! I don’t care how much more polished the Cocoa UI is over AWT. The mere productivity gain I get from a garbage-collected language is far better than… well there’s a learning curve I’m annoyed by too. I think I’m starting to get lazy and not wanting to pickup new things. That’s the very same reason I gravitate toward Groovy instead of Ruby. I’m not too proud of that…

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