Borkware Miniblog

August 16, 2011

My First App: Class Builder

Filed under: cycling, iPhone, programming, work — Mark Dalrymple @ 2:02 pm

Class builder beauty

My first App got accepted into the AppStore yesterday – Cycling Fusion’s Class Builder™. Woot! Amazingly enough, it went through the approval process without a peep. There’s screen shots and tutorial videos (some still in the making – didn’t expect AppStore approval so quickly) at the link. And it’s at the AppStore.

Class Builder is a tool for Indoor Cycling (a.k.a. “Spinning®”) instructors to lead better classes. Rather than juggling an ipod, sheets of paper or 3×5 cards, and a stopwatch; instructors can plug their Device into the club sound system, run the class, and have cues pop up at the proper time during the class. They can also configure pre-class and post-class music for ambience before and afterwards. If the club has a projector, the instructor can plug their Device into the projector and show everyone the ride profile, along with additional information like current cadence / power / HeartZone®. A slideshow of photos can be shown during the pre-class time to help set the mood.

Despite “Class” in the name, this has nothing to do with programming.

Folks have asked me what I’ve been up to in the year-and-change since I left Google to work with Cycling Fusion. This is it, and the usual billion other things that go on when you work at a startup (along with the major update to AMOSXP)

The code is pretty much all mine, end-to-end. 13,000 non-comment / non-whitespace / non-brace LoC, 84 classes, 32 html files, and 677 .pngs. Not huge, but respectable. It was my first time really to work on something small enough that could be coded by a single programmer – usually I work on behind-the-scenes stuff that nobody else wants to touch. App design was by me and Gene Nacey, the fearless leader of Cycling Fusion. Graphic design by Emanuel Rufino and me. Luckily I now have the Photoshop skills to convert between an inspired artist and the user interface, to tone things down or amp them up as needed to fit the demands of the UI.

Class Builder is a part of the overall Cycling Fusion strategy for bringing the worlds of Indoor and Outdoor cycling together. We’re revolutionizing Indoor Cycling as we now know it through curriculum and certification, targeted training programs, web-based tools, mobile device apps, licensable music and an online video training library. Our big coming-out party is in the fall. If you’re into that kind of stuff, come on down to the ICI Pro Conference in October and check us out.

August 15, 2011

The New Phone Books Are Here! The New Phone Books Are Here!

Filed under: amosxp, Big Nerd Ranch, writing — Mark Dalrymple @ 11:56 am

Vikki bookIt’s been a while in the making, but Advanced Mac OS X Programming 3 / The Big Nerd Ranch Guide has finally started trickling out to folks.  I got my Author Copies today.  WOOOO!  You can see Vikki posing with the new edition.  Everything on the internet is improved by adding a cat.

This book is a massive overhaul of the second edition.  I dropped a number of chapters (I’m pretty sure folks know about version control systems these days), and a number were added (DTrace and GCD anyone?), with pretty much everything edited and improved (bye-bye Shark :-(  Hello Instruments :-) ), covering stuff through 10.6 / iOS 4.  Students taking my class at the ranch get to be guinea pigs a sneak peek of the Lion-related material.  It had already been over five years since the second edition, so we decided to go ahead and ship it, and then do a thorough job on the Lion / iOS5 / iCloud stuff in a later edition.  Hopefully not so much later this time.

Speaking of Editing, Susan and Chris Loper from Intelligent English edited the book and maintained the DocBook-based pipeline of tools.  The second edition did not have an editor, and it shows.  Chris wrangled the tools, and thanks to Susan’s work I’m quite proud of the third edition, the quality of the writing, and the quality of the index (another second edition sore spot).

These things make great Labor Day gifts.  Be sure to order several for the children.  I’ll have a couple with me at CocoaHeads/Pittsburgh this week to give away.

Edit2: Gaige Paulsen pointed out that it’s already available in the iBooks / Kindle stores.  You can snarf the free sample and check out the table of contents.

Edit1: Folks have asked what’s new (skimming down the ToC – I’ve been living inside this thing, and teaching out of it for five years now…)

  • ObjC 2.0 stuff, properties, etc
  • Blocks
  • 64-Bit computing
  • getopt_long
  • lib/otool
  • Garbage Collection
  • Debugging techniques
  • DTrace
  • Overhaul of Performance Tuning
  • Instruments
  • NSFileManager got a complete overhaul
  • IPv6, overhaul of the code
  • CFHost
  • FSEvents
  • Operations
  • GCD

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