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Julian James

Julian has been developing iPhone apps since the iPhone SDK was released, with his first app, a game, Zone Warrior going live in October 2008. He now has 10 apps on the app store with several being designed specifically for the iPad. He's been a Mac OS developer on and off for over 20 years. Other computing experience includes C, C++ and Java development in various industries, including banking, simulation and multimedia.

Memories of WWDC

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It's that time of year when the Apple developer community prepares for Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC), an annual gathering in San Francisco of around five thousand developers from around the world. These days the event is so over subscribed Apple uses a lottery system to determine who gets tickets. Sadly I won't be going this year but I have been fortunate to have been to eight WWDCs, the first in 1996 and the last in 2014. How things have changed...


Getting started with Swift and WatchKit

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In the second of my blogs on Swift I will look at WatchKit for the newly released Apple Watch. This will involve adding Watch functionality to an existing project, the Hackaball prototype app. Hopefully some of the solutions to problems found on the way will be of use. Version 6.3.1 of Xcode is used.

For an excellent overview of technologies in the Watch, check out the blog by my colleague Alex Barlow.


Exploring Swift with Playgrounds

This is the first of a series of blogs about using Swift, Apple's new programming language that was annouced at WWDC 2014. They are not in any particular order but are about new and interesting features and differences with Objective-C. I don't intend to explain syntax or specific frameworks as there are plenty of resources available covering those already.


Continuous Integration for iOS Development

When developing iOS apps a number of things are required for producing a quality product. These include the ability to run unit tests on the code and to test the user interface automatically. We can set up Continuous Integration (CI) to complete these tests for us. If all tests are passed then we automatically upload to Hockeyapp for our testers to download. In this blogpost I'll take you through the process of setting up a CI pipeline for iOS.

We built a very simple app called ‘Tasky’ which pretty much does as little as possible but enough to be able to build a complete workflow. We wanted an app with a bit of navigation and Core Data to give us enough to test.


A tale of two cameras

I’m going to share some of the thinking and code behind the Picle iPhone app starting with the camera functionality. This will involve showing some code snippets and describing classes and frameworks found in the Apple iOS SDK. 

At the heart of the the Picle app is the ability to use the iPhone camera and microphone in quick succession. The user experience of this functionality is critical to feel of the app so plenty of work has been done both before and after the initial release. Indeed the next release will have this completely reworked.


Simple Animations on iOS

Anyone who has used iOS will be familiar with the way Apple uses animation in their apps. It's one of the most delightful features of the platform and users loved it, even before there was an App Store. If you use apps that don't employ judicious animation, you get a sense of something missing, of an undefinable lack of quality.