This update is a milestone. Widgets is now in 2.x territory. That means the app is becoming more refined. Major issues are being resolved. Looking back, Apple’s been a big part of that success. Their tech support has been legendary. I rejoined the Apple Developer Program last May. Since then, Apple resolved four of my technical issues. Looking at my “App Development” folder in Thunderbird (my email client), there are 48 messages from “Apple Developer Technical Support” just this year.
It was getting late, on this first Saturday night after Thanksgiving. Not feeling well, possibly catching a cold, I decided to do something less mentally taxing. That basically meant doing work that could be done from my iPad. Snuggled under a warm blanket, I decided to check on my SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Would people find “Photics” if they searched for the words “Dashboard Replacement” online? In running this experiment, I found an interesting article from WIRED.
Wow, that was rough! The Widgets app had a really nasty issue. The app would freeze on startup. If you had too many contacts – boom! The fix was not easy. The “Contacts” widget had to be redesigned and rewritten. It would have been easier to delete the widget and create a different widget from scratch. I’m not sure where the motivation comes from, as the challenge was bit beyond my level as a developer. But somehow, this project is different. I stuck with it until I figured it out.
While not as dire sounding as the title of this article, (I like alliteration.) I’m in the middle of a battle. The difficultly of creating widgets was severely underestimated. Every single widget (except maybe the clock) has been a struggle. What’s even more surprising is how much I love it. It’s an epic challenge of man-vs-machine. The thrill of victory, in this cerebral conflict, is exhilarating.