Toys for tomorrow at WWDC
This year some of the dev team at Tinybop — Rob (not pictured above), Cameron, and I — got the chance to go to Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco. It was nice to be surrounded by knowledgeable developers with an eagerness to both learn and share their experiences.
Every year at WWDC, Apple reveals its new software and technologies. But WWDC is more than just the highly publicized keynote, it also offers sessions to help developers learn new features and improve upon their current skills. Here are some of the things that got us all excited:
- App thinning: it will help reduce the size of some of our apps by tailoring the app to better fit to your device (which gives you more room for other stuff).
- Improvements to Apple’s new language, Swift: we’ll be able to write better code faster for new features in the parent’s dashboard (found in all Tinybop apps). We recently rebuilt the dashboard in 100% Swift.
- Thanks to the “Profiling in Depth” session we now have a solid understanding of how to better use Xcode’s profiler. It shows us how much of a device’s processor and graphics card are being used by an app which helps us find areas in the app that are running slower.
- New Metal (Apple’s graphics API) features: MetalKit and Metal performance shaders. MetalKit allows for easier implementations of Metal resulting in better performance and stability of our apps. And there’s now a collection of shaders that have been optimized for iOS.
In short, these things will help us make better, faster apps faster!
But our time in San Francisco wasn’t all WWDC related. We did get a chance to explore the city a bit. We visited Fisherman’s Wharf and saw the sea lions lounging in the sun. We also biked across the Golden Gate Bridge with another developer we are currently working with who lives out there, Mahboud Zabetian. He was a great guide, taking us through the beautiful hills of Sausalito and Richardson Bay to Tiburon where we took the ferry back to San Francisco.