Apple developers might feel like tiny islands in an ocean of Windows programmers but next month they’ll get the chance to rub shoulders at the South Pacific Mac Developers Conference in Auckland.
“We beaver away in relative isolation with the aid of newsgroups and mail lists,” says conference organiser and Apple code-cutter Phil Smith. “By getting together we have a chance to share experience and establish contacts that we can contact directly when we need some help with a programming area.”
Apart from meeting people, conference goers will also get the chance to explore the latest development methodologies such as MacOS-X with Unix, WebObjects and Cocoa. The WebObjects session will look at ASP (application service provider) development.
“These technologies get showcased in the US but few of us can get to the worldwide developers conference or MacHack. This is an attempt to recreate something like these events but, of course, on a much smaller scale.”
Attendance will also enable Mac code-cutters to check out what’s happening in traditional Macintosh directions with tools such as Filemaker, Applescript and REALBasic, says Smith.
Smith, who runs a single-person outfit on the North Shore called Applied Evolution, says he has no idea how many Apple developers there are in New Zealand although the conference might provide the opportunity to start finding out.
Smith, who was originally a C++ developer, says he was looking for an easier language to write in and discovered Applescript. “I use this for most of my current work where execution speed is not essential.”
Smith has recently started learning REALBasic, which he says is faster than Applescript and easier than C++. “It is cross-platform and can produce scriptable applications so I can extend the functionality of Applescript when I wish.”