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Retail vs Interface

Peter Bright for arstechnica.com:

LCA's memo reportedly says that Microsoft has been threatened with legal action for infringing on "Metro" trademarks held by German retailer Metro AG.

This is a very sad day for me. A brand name of a big German Retailer cannot be used in a totally different context, namely the new Interface of Windows 8. There is something really wrong with the Trademarks and Patents system.

Finally Ads I like again

After doing all the celebrity Siri sticks that smelled like those other companies, Apple got back to make ads the enthusiasts like. I approve big time. Mayday is my favorite.

Off-putting and vaguely insulting

John Siracusa about Game Center on Mountain Lion:

On the Mac, Apple is sticking with the same parlor-games theme of green felt and wood that it used in iOS. As a gamer, I find this design off-putting and vaguely insulting, but perhaps I am not Apple's target audience.

I haven't seen any gamer enjoying or even liking this design. Still wondering why on Earth Apple is sticking with it. It is even worse on the desktop (just look at the text only tabs on the top with the "Requests (2)"). I don't know where to begin…

let value of values

Nicholas C. Zakas on ECMAScript 6:

var values = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6];
for (let value of values) {

This makes complete sense to me. The syntax is very similar to the already existing for and for-in loops and mimics what’s already available with Array.prototype.forEach().

I was quite unaware that javascript is getting new syntax. If you are too, this article might be enlighting. However, I already hate the existence of a for-of besides a for-in loop. If you like making fun of javascript, you might enjoy this short talk by Gary Bernardt.


Quentin Stafford-Fraser:

I had an idea for a low-cost stylus that could be used with any LCD display – a phone, tablet, laptop, even a TV – and yet would allow for exceedingly high-resolution drawing. The basic idea was to include a small camera – something that now costs very little – pointing at the screen, and use various cunning techniques to recognise the pixels at which it was pointing.

Nice reminiscing of Quentin about an idea he had 7 years ago. Quentin is an Inventor in the truest sense of the world, a living Gyro Gearloose. I had the pleasure of meeting him once, he really is an idea machine. You should subscribe to his blog.

Reasonable reactions

@mattgemmel on his Blog:

The Sparrow guys have homes, and families. They have every right to cash out and take new jobs. They’re winners.

Great collection and discussion of usual reactions to an acquisition of an iOS/Mac Indie by example of the Sparrow Acquisition.

Matt does a great job of reminding people (and other developers including me) that there are people behind software. It helps to be reminded of that from time to time.

PHP the right way

There is no canonical way to use PHP. However, this website is a humble display of best practices, available options, and good information. It aims to introduce new PHP developers and to rethink seasoned pros with fresh ideas.

To me the best way of using PHP is not to use PHP. But if you have to, this seems like a good resource for how you can do it with the least amount of brain damage.

dropping the "i"

Neven Mrgan on his Tumbl:

CUPERTINO, California—June 27, 2012—Apple today announced a major rebranding of their entire product catalog, dropping the “i” prefix in the names of products such as iTunes, iLife, and iWork. These will now be known as Tunes, Life, and Work.

It's been a long time since I laughed so hard. Thanks @mrgan

Plain Text Passwords FTW – NOT.

Lex Friedman for Macworld.com (via daringfireball):

iOS users who try the hack may find that, in addition to robbing the developers behind apps that they enjoy, they’ve put themselves at risk. “I can see the Apple ID and password,” for accounts that try the hack, Borodin told Macworld. “But not the credit card information.” Borodin said that he was “shocked” that passwords were passed in plain text and not encrypted.

Sending passwords directly was never and won't be a good idea. I'm quite anxious about the fact that Apple does this for the App Store in one place, that probably means it does so in others as well. That is costing trust. Together with it's inability to check the identity of their own servers, which is also leading to a Game Center exploit to score any points you'd like with a simple man in the middle attack anyone can do, this is really really dangerous. I'm wondering when the first real Password Gate for iTunes Accounts will be happening.

Update: As it has been pointed out to me repeatedly the term Plain Text Passwords is not exactly true if the connection is a TLS connection. However my point is here that there is no need for sending the user's password in direct form and combined with the fact that TLS is prone to man in the middle attacks, and Apple's way of handling that in iOS in particular, makes it unacceptable. So that is why I think the somewhat scandalistic term "Plain Text Passwords" is warranted.

OUYA: Android based game console

From the kickstarter page of the project:

Developers can wave farewell to the roadblocks of bringing a console game to market. Anyone can make a game: every OUYA console is a dev kit. No need to purchase a license or an expensive SDK. It's built on Android, so developers already know how it works.

Very interesting project. It already got 1.5 Million in the first Day. The prospect sounds great - if they can deliver a great experience on top of it. I'd say they easily can beat the existing gaming consoles in terms of usability and style if they put their heart into it. The $99 price point also is fantastic value for the money. Maybe that will be the true plattform for android. I really hope they pull it off. I didn't order an early development kit though, as we are commited to the iOS platform. But as a gamer you bet that I backed a release version with 2 controllers. And you should too.