iPhone SDK launches Apple into mobile gaming

Games, Interactive Design, iPhone, Wii

iPhone SDK image'

Excellent article today on Roughly Drafted about how the release of the iPhone SDK has suddenly catapulted Apple into a very strong position in the mobile gaming market. I heartily agree, having happily participated in the stampede that brought down Apple’s servers subsequent to the SDK’s release.

The fact that Apple is taking one of the hottest pieces of hardware around and making it so accessible is incredibly significant. In fact, when the SDK was released I had been planning to post a lengthy diatribe about the relative inaccessibility of Wii Ware to amateur developers. Nintendo’s insistence that Wii Ware developers be established companies (no home offices allowed) was a bit of a let-down, but the iPhone SDK more than made up for the disappointment—so far it seems to be everything I hoped for from Wii Ware and more.

Even though the SDK is still in a limited beta (and I’m one of the thousands who got my very own “we’ll be expanding the beta later, hang on for a while” email from Apple), it’s abundantly clear that they’ve gotten a lot right with the release, including the revenue sharing model. The ground is so fertile here that it’s convinced me to start hastily learning Objective-C (happily, C seems much easier to me now than it did eleven years ago, the last time I tried to pick it up...)

Such an exciting time right now. Man!


The impossible iPhone

Exemplary Work, iPhone

I’m an Apple fanboy from way back.  When I was a kid my parents used to take me to the LO*OP Center, whose founder, Liza Loop, was the lucky recipient of the first Apple I directly from Woz himself.  Soon after we bought an Apple II+ and…

Well, anyway, I’ve been as fascinated as anyone by the iPhone, but have managed to keep any out-and-out technolust to a minimum.  Until today, that is, when I read the most in-depth review of the iPhone I’ve yet seen, from AppleInsider. It’s quite a lengthy piece, but what really caught my eye was the discussion of the user interface on page four:

This device is so full of unnecessary interface embellishments that it appears to be the work of artisan crafters working to impress the world with their witty creative wizardry rather than a corporation scheming to earn money and market share. It simply does not feel possible that the iPhone should exist, but here I am holding it in my hand.

And that’s the sweet spot.  Apple’s really good at telling this particular story (and of course they are scheming to earn money and market share).  It seems like the iPhone shouldn’t exist, but the fact that it does means that you, the user, were right.  All those other phones you had a hard time using?  Well, they were wrong, and you were right.  And this object is the evidence of your rightness.

It’s not just an Apple thing, though. My favorite art, the stuff that really knocks my socks off, always seems to give me that same feeling.


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