I really tend to consider becoming a Mac-Developer

Thu, 05 Nov 2009 18:45:48 +0000

Full of expectations I bought my macbook in those days, knowing that it would be expensive but a lot of people like it. Well, meanwhile, getting used to some drawbacks of Mac OS, I know quite a few good parts of Software.

On the other hand, since I read more and more about macs, I get more information about them and about the software Mac-Users usually use and consider being „great“.

Well, one of them is the so called „Mercury Mover“ (via), which helps you get around the inability of Apples‘ programmers to make a reasonable window manager. There are a lot of similar pieces of software. None of them is free. Usually they cost about 20$. 20$ for a proper window-management.

Then there is Growl. It may be a handy thing to have some central notifier, but it is nothing so „great“ (as I was told often). Well, its software that is widely used by other software to send notifications, similar to libnotify on Linux, but noone would call libnotify „great software“.

Another thing is software for screencasts, well, there is the platform independent vnc2flv, which is free, and should be sufficient for many purposes, but well, it can only be as good as the vnc-server is (and vnc-servers optimize for network-traffic rather than video quality), and I found Copernicus being free, but it crashes before saving videos for me, dont know why. And well, for simple purposes, the following bashscript should be sufficient: i=0; while true; do screencapture $i.png; sleep 0.1; ((i++)); done)

Well, under Linux, you have a lot of free window-managers and at least recordmydesktop as a screencast-utility (my old screencasts for my game were made with recordmydesktop under kde).

Under Mac OS, there may also be free utilities, but the existence of utilities you have to pay for shows that there must obviously be people who pay for it. Well ok, maybe there are professionals who need professional tools – but usually, professional tools are a lot more expensive than 20$ and can do a lot more than producing screencasts – actually I wonder if there is a „professional“ screencast-creator anyway – actually, it would make more sense as part of some video-cut-application that can do a lot more other stuff.

And for a software that can do a lot of stuff, and is made for professional usage, it is ok to pay money. You earn money using the software, so why shouldnt you pay for it? But software for professional usage usually has professional quality. I am not sure if a screencast-application can be that way. A „professional“ screencast software should add – in my oppinnion – have the possibility to add an additional virtual screen such that one can separate the own desktop from whatr is being recorded.

Anyway, a reason for me not even considering taking money for anything I code is that I dont consider most of the software I would write worth paying for it. Like, creating a screencast-software may not be the easiest thing to do, but well, it is still easy enough in most cases that I would never consider to get payed for writing one. So far.

But it seems that apple-persons will pay a lot of money for your apps, as long as they come as a shiny dmg-package with a lot of beautifully-shaded buttons and stuff, that integrates in your local UI-Environment. But thats not hard – compared to Linux and Windows, Mac OS X has a very unified Desktop-API that is widely accepted, it is rather easy to code GUI-Applications that behave like Mac OS X apps. So … well … why not become a Mac-Developer? Should be the easiest way to make money as a programmer.

Its a bit like homoeopathy: Delute something multiple times with cheap desktop-pr0n, and tell the people it is better than anything else.

Randomly Found Software: XorCurses

Thu, 05 Nov 2009 01:13:49 +0000

Xor is a strategy-game, and seems like a very old one. Though, I didnt know it yet. You have two shields that you push through mazes with Chickens, Fish and Stones which move after you, and you must collect masks. Well, this sounds strange, and I actually dont know what they thought of, when designing this game with these items.

There seem to be a lot of ports of this game (like of most older games), like a JavaScript-Version and some Windows-Ports, etc., but well, the one I want to look at today is XorCurses (via).

As the name suggests, it is implemented using libCurses, thus, playable in the console, which makes this game a very nice thing. They did a good job programming it, the walls and the items look really good, even though just an ascii-game. So, it is quite a fun to play. Here is a screencast:

The gameplay somehow reminds me of Fish Fillets NG. Anyway, this game is fun. Unfortunately there doesnt seem to be any packages yet, but it is easy to compile and install.