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More MacHack Madness

Okay, MacHac^H^H^H ADHOC was definitely fun. I was at a lot of sessions and met a numberof people whom I had known only by name until now. Here's a rundown for those who wanna know what I've been up to:

  • Networking with OpenPlay. This was the kind of session that makes you groan and go "why didn't I think of that?". I was introduced to OpenPlay and how it's even useful for non-gaming projects. The session was a little dry, but nonetheless, I needed that kick in the butt to remind me what good APIs I've missed by forgetting about looking at game-related projects.
  • Networking with Rendezvous. This session introduced us to the ideas and concepts behind Zeroconf networking, and what it does, what it doesn't, and why both of these are usually good things. The lecturer also elaborated on the differences to JINI and other similar technologies.
  • Hardware Technology Trends. A great rundown on all kinds of hardware, including a rundown of the CPU architectures. Mainly Intel-centered, but from the point of view of a Mac-user. We even got the lecturer's thoughts about the next hot technology, and it'll be interesting to see that.
  • Simulating Fibers on OS X. Andrew Pontious' award-winning (voted best paper here at Mac^H^H^H ADHOC) intro on how you can use the good old thread manager or Cocoa's NSThread to seemingly give a ported application full control over program flow without making the GUI seem unresponsive, nor making it seem modal.
  • Test-Driven Objective-C Development. This session introduced me to Unit Testing, in particular using UnitKit. Of course, most of us can see why it is a good idea, but I'm still missing the 'hot feature'-lightbulb that needs to go on in my head before I understand why it's done the way it is.
  • Sadly, I missed Wolf Rentzsch's Session on Mach-O Inject.

Apart from sessions, I've also been working on various hacks, some of my own, and some other peoples'. One included the Talking Moose, another is the little app I demoed and which you'll find on the ADHOC CD with source code, and others included helping people to learn Cocoa to get their hacks done. I didn't really have any excelling hack ideas, but just being there and being part of it was fun. And I will always cherish my ADHOC Award in Optics.

I also put a few faces to names. I met Andrew Pontious, author of MacTADS an co-author of HyperTADS, James Duncan Davidson (Apache Tomcat, Ant, JAXP), Ron Liechty, the guy who helped me get the hang of CodeWarrior on comp.sys.mac.programmer, and Jonathan "Wolf" Rentzsch, fellow Cocoa programmer and Cocoa-Dev poster. Jonathan had a copy of EtherPEG with him, which is sort of a packet sniffer that fetches JPEG images currently being transferred over the net. It's both a very good reminder of how insecure a local network is, as well as a wondeful game if you happen to have a whole AirPort network full of notebooks and somebody does a Google Image Search. Oh, and as a little bonus, I've written my first screen saver based on EtherPEG, which hopefully also made it on the ADHOC CD. If it didn't, I guess I'll have to put it up here someday, once I'm back home and can do more of these weird computer things.

On the second day, I heard Adam Engst's (TidBITS) talk about 'hacking the press' and lots of other stuff. Basically, he gave us lots of tips on how to make sure our product announcements reach the right people and get best exposure, as well as giving us other tips ranging from shareware payment processing via eSellerate, Kagi, PayPal and the likes to how to get something out of Eudora. And he sure has a way with words!

 
Created: 2004-08-11 @789 Last change: 2004-08-11 @789 | Home | Admin | Edit
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