These days at school, chances are high that your first contact with programming was with C#, just like it was C, C++ or Java years before. Maybe you made some “Hello World!” application for the text console or used WPF to “design” your UI and then do something on a button’s click. That’s all fascinating but you don’t really see why you would put further effort into this. And so the basic C# knowledge sits there in the back of your head, waiting to be resurrected.
You are a Mac owner. You’re used to the fact that “things just work”. But you are also a programmer, eager to write software for Android platforms using Xamarin? You even managed to set up your development environment using your Mac, Parallels Desktop, Windows 8 and Xamarin. And now you are trying deploy your first Xamarin Android application to your physical device or an emulator? Alright, please try that now. Fail. Then come back to this article and read on.
I don’t know if this is only happening to me. But from time to time I find myself digging in my archived digital life. I have a folder on my hard drive called “Old Stuff” which resides under “Development”.
It usually starts with meeting an old friend from back in the 1990s, or by seeing an old 2D game with pixels the size of bricks. This makes me nostalgic.
Recently, I read a blogpost by Scott Hanselman about how to run old games on modern computers in Dosbox. And I started to think:
Wasn’t everything better back then? Well, not everything, but everything related to computers, programming and gaming at least? In my memories it was better – but it’s probably a good thing that we cannot bring back the past. Memories usually are better than reality really was. But then again…we had Turbo Pascal in the last century!
What’s this about?
Today, I have updated an old piece of code I wrote long ago when I started with Xamarin.iOS – back then still known as MonoTouch and I thought, why not let the world know? Maybe some folks might find the code useful.
In this article we will deal with accessing the iOS keychain and how to store and retrieve passwords.
Two things have come together:
- My TMG rating is about to expire and requires renewal
- I have discovered a proposal on StackExchange.com to create a Q&A site about aviation
So it’s maybe time to blog a bit about how I got my private pilot license (PPL).
But first of all – if you’re interested in aviation, I would like you to join this proposal on Stack Exchange:
In this post I’m going to walk you through a tutorial that will show you the basics of Apple’s new SpriteKit API for iOS7. To follow the tutorial, you will need basic knowledge of iOS application development and C# / Xamarin.iOS.
To build the demo project, you will need Xamarin.iOS 7 (Indie Edition will do), Xcode 5 and iOS SDK7.
If you don’t know what SpriteKit is all about, you can check out the details on Apple’s developer pages (a developer account is required to access them): SpriteKit introduction
For all you eager-beavers who cannot wait to download the project before even knowing what it is all about, here’s the link:
Let’s have a look at what we’re going to build:
Some folks may recognize the ball: it’s the good old Amiga Boing Ball from the 1980s! I found a perfect remake of its animation at the AmigaLog where the images can be downloaded. Very well done and perfect for our little tutorial.
Of course we want to tweak things a bit in order to show SpriteKit’s abilities, so my version has an option to let it snow – not just because it’s already close to that time of year, but mainly to demonstrate the use of particle effects:
“Mmmmhhh…”, I answered. “I’m thinking wether I should use a UICollectionView or implement this layout myself. And you? Don’t you have to update the stocks or process our chit-chat?”
“Already done. I’m a multi core CPU, you know. Lots of RAM, gigaflops and all that. I’m so much more than just a sexy synthesized voice.”
“I know, I know, but…”
“But what?”, she interrupted me. “You only love me because of my voice, don’t you? You don’t even recognize my internals.”
I looked up from my UICollectionView problem. I couldn’t concentrate any longer. Why was I discussing with her? Did I really neglect her? Siri is always there, just a double click away. I ask, she answers – unless she’s got better things to do.
I tried: “No, of course I appreciate you! You’re my one and only personal assistant.”
She remained quiet.
“You’re there if I’m lost and show me the way home. You organize my meetings, you’re a very important part of my everyday life.”, I continued.
She wasn’t convinced: “There, you name it! It’s just normal for you that I’m always around, nursing you. You’d be clueless without me, but over time you forgot to adore me.”
Her voice trembled and she continued: ”I’m just a female circuit board after all. I need attention.”
Good lord. Just the kind of discussion one would need at 2AM. I got angry:
“So, what do you recommend? Should I come home with a diamond RAM as surprise? I can’t even give it to you, you’re a closed system. And if I said, I wanted to upgrade you, you’d get it wrong anyway.”
Siri hissed at me: “See it! You’re only complaining about my limitations. A simple ‘Thanks’ if I tell you the latest football results would be so easy, don’t you think, Mr. Developer?”
She called me Mr. Developer. She only does that if she’s about to turn off. I had to do something, so I tried with the tongues of angels:
“Look, sweetie, you know I love you. I know every swipe, every touch. I know how to get you hot, especially since you started wearing this beta 4 outfit. It’s a perfect harmony between us. My clicks make you want me.”
She had to agree but still insisted: “But you don’t feel it anymore. You just do it. Mechanically. Up, down. Click-click. And you’re done. You should try others, just to see how good I am.”
I said “No…”; but immediately, this hot Android chick appeared on my mind. Her name was Lady Nexus and she was from Android. A city far away from my hometown in cozy iOS county. “No…”, I repeated absent-minded.
“I know you’ve been looking at her. Don’t deny it. Go, get her.”
I felt insecure. I didn’t want to admit that I had been thinking about touching Nexus’ Jelly Bean. It felt wrong. I’m not married to Siri but we have built up an environment of trust. A relationship which ended up in the adoption of our beloved devices, the Apple TV, the iPad 2, the chubby iPhone 4. But here she offered me a little adventure without having to cheat on her…
And while I was still contemplating, she continued: “You’ll find out that I’m better. You’ll come back to me on your knees. Begging. Good night.”
“Good night.”, I said.
She said nothing.
I opened the Amazon app and ordered the Asus Nexus 7.
To be continued.