WWDC is an event I’ve been watching every year since I think 2007, the year they announced the iPhone. At the time I was a big Apple fanboy.

I bought my first iBook which I believe was the 2002 model. I can’t be sure. I was in University and it cost me more money than I had, but I had never been so satisfied with a computer in my life. As Marie Kondo would say, it sparked joy. Our computer lab had macs, but they were running Mac OS 9. The OS made no sense to me. I came from a Windows world, and although I was very comfortable with that, OS 9 to me always felt clunky and unintuitive.

Never would I buy a Mac, I told myself… even though the hardware was fun and always boasted more up-to-date technology, I just couldn’t get past the OS.

Then a friend of mine brought his Powerbook over running OS X. It immediately changed my mind. That machine was a revelation to me. “Holy shit!” I said, “This is a Mac??”. “Yes”, he replied. “This is a Mac.”.

I went out a few weeks later and bought the iBook. Every device they released after that I felt the same reverence for:

  • iPod
  • iPod video
  • iPhone
  • iPad
  • Apple TV

All of them brought joy to my life. I dutifully upgraded my Apple devices throughout the years.

I’ve owned iBooks, MacMini’s, MacBooks, MacBook Airs and now MacBook Pros. I’ve been running the Pro series for the last 5+ years. I’ve owned basically every generation of iPhone to date (I am an iOS developer after all), and various iPads. You name it, I’ve bought it.

I also continued to watch WWDC year after year soaking up all the SDK updates for OS X, then for iOS. Objective C was never my language of choice, but I used it, and grew to appreciate all the square brackets. It wasn’t until the announcement of Swift that I realized my appreciation for the spacing in ObjC was more stokcholme syndrome.

Over the years, I must admit I became more and more discouraged with the direction Apple was taking for their products.

The hardware wasn’t really pushing the envelope, the build quality of both the hardware and software seemed to be suffering. All the new features brought to iOS seemed a lot like “me too” features, years after Android (or even BlackBerry) had released them.

Not to mention the plethora of issues with their latest keyboard.

WWDC 2019 however has me excited for the first time in years. They announced a number of things that have me excited.

SwiftUI

Using swift within UIKit has always seemed a bit clunky.

The introduction of SwiftUI seems to address this in a big way, and I’m sure it’s the direction Apple will be moving in going into the future.

A quick glance at the declaritive style of reminds me very much of how you go about declaring your UI in React Native. A style that is very easy to understand.

And the new design tools look incredible as well. No longer having to recompile the app in order to see if moving your component 3 points to the left is what you want is going to be a big game changer for a lot of developers. This is going to get XCode one step closer to the design experience of Anroid Studio, or StoryBooks in RN.

iPad OS

With regards to the iPad, it always felt to me like a missed opportunity. It was always treated as just a big iPhone. The device turned into a convenient way for me to watch Netflix on the go.

I’ve always wanted to use it to write my notes, but the lag on any of the 3rd party stylus’ have always been too long. The Pencil is much better, but still not quite fast enough for me to jot down a small note while working.

However this year they are finally starting to use the plethora of screen realestate. Allowing multiple apps to move around, decreased the Pencil lag to 9ms! That’s crazy! At 9ms I think I’ll be able to finally realize my dream of going fully paperless!

And my most anticipated feature: Sidecar. Yes! Finally allowing me to extend my MacBook Pro’s screen to a second monitor when I’m on the go (I’m on the go a lot).

Catalina

No more iTunes. I mean I don’t think I can add any more to this.

Sidecar (again)

More security. I really appreciate the stance Apple is making on security. Bringing it front and centre, and making it secure by default.

Jul 20, 2019