Month: March 2011

Links from the March 2011 Meeting

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Here are links from the News presentation. I’ll make a point going forward to post them here right after each meeting.

iOS Debugging Magic
Apple Technical Note TN2239

Langwich Translation Service


iOS Inspires Me

Developers Against Poverty

NSConference UK 2011

Desert Code Camp Spring 2011

Voices That Matter
iPhone Developers Conference

iPhone/iPad DevCon East

NSCoders Phoenix (East Valley)

NSCoders Scottsdale (neé Xcode Phoenix Lab)

Cocoaheads Phoenix (neé Xcode Phoenix)

Phoenix iOS Developer Group


2011 Meeting Survey Results

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I’ve tallied the results of the 2011 Meeting Survey. 34 people participated, providing some interesting results.

Presentation Topics

Graph showing the colors for the range from Very Interested (green) to Not Interested (red)
Presentation Topics Key

All charts total 100%. Think of a 100% stacked column chart as pie charts untwisted into a column in order to reduce visual bias.

The results of the presentation topic questions are grouped by how many people were in favor of the topic compared to those not in favor. Respondents indicated their interest in a topic using a five-point range. In these charts, think of the colors as a stoplight, with green for “Very Interested,” red for “Not Interested,” and yellow for “No Preference.” The overlaid numbers show the totals of the green plus green yellow (those who are interested) and the red plus orange (those who are explicitly not interested).

Strongly in Favor

In this group 2/3 or more of respondents were interested and were few or none were opposed.

Graph showing 90% positive, 0% negative

Frameworks & Libraries
Making the best use of iOS frameworks, finding and choosing helpful third-party libraries and other code, etc.

Graph showing 88% positive, 4% negative

User Interface
(User Interface & Media):
Proper use of standard views and controls, working within and around the Human Interface Guidelines, creating an intuitive interface, etc.

Graph showing 83% positive, 10% negative

(Post Development):
How to build a great app website, writing a press release, getting the word out and building buzz, using promo codes, etc.

Graph showing 83% positive, 11% negative

(The Business of Development):
App pricing, advertising, in-app purchases, subscriptions, sponsorships, etc.

Graph showing 84% positive, 7% negative

Programming tips and tricks, how to tackle specific programming problems, advanced techniques, etc.

Graph showing 85% positive, 8% negative

Designing the overall code structure, useful design patterns, object design, appropriate Model-View-Controller separation, local data storage options, etc.

Graph showing 78% positive, 11% negative

Graphics & Graphic Design
(User Interface and Media):
Suggestions for tools, sources for icons and other graphics, creating quality artwork and app icons, finding a graphic artist or illustrator, etc.

Graph showing 74% positive, 11% negative

Indie Development
(The Business of Development):
Motivation, time management, product staging, budgeting, networking, etc.

Graph showing 75% positive, 4% negative

Debugging, using unit testing, finding beta testers, managing your beta tests, working with crash reports, etc.

Graph showing 75% positive, 7% negative

Sales & Marketing Reports
(Local Developers):
Presentations by app developers about how well their apps sold, marketing and pricing changes they implemented and the apparent sales change results, etc.

Graph showing 69% positive, 0% negative

Selecting app features, determining the feasibility of implementing certain parts of an app, app types that might increase the chance of Apple rejection, etc.

Graph showing 63% positive, 11% negative

App Demos
(Local Developers):
Demonstrations of recently-released apps from local developers, including behind-the-scenes decision-making, coding tricks, app inspiration, etc.


Mediocre Support

In this group fewer respondents were interested but there were a large number who could go either way or who were actively not interested.

Graph showing 67% positive, 18% negative

(The Business of Development):
Finding and managing clients, contracts and invoicing, design documents, etc.

Graph showing 54% positive, 27% negative

News from the previous month, including Apple developer news, sales data, trends, reasonably-substantiated rumors, new libraries and tutorials, etc.

Graph showing 56% positive, 16% negative

(Post Development):
Fixing post-release bugs, modifying features, adding new features, creating spin-offs, etc.


Weak Support

In this group less than half of the respondents were interested. The rest could go either way or were actively uninterested.

Graph showing 44% positive, 26% negative

(User Interface and Media):
Using appropriate audio formats, preparing and converting audio files, sources for sounds and music, integrating audio into your app, downloading or streaming audio from the net, etc.

Graph showing 44% positive, 18% negative

(Post Development):
Answering support questions, responding to feature requests, handling bug reports, etc.

Graph showing 46% positive, 19% negative

Mac App Development
Converting an iOS app to a Mac app, platform framework differences, Mac app UI design, etc.

Graph showing 50% positive, 37% negative

(The Business of Development):
Finding designers and developers to build all or part of your app, contracting and payments, managing the project, hiring considerations, etc.

Graph showing 46% positive, 35% negative

(User Interface & Media):
Using appropriate video formats, preparing and converting video files, integrating video into your app, downloading or streaming video from the net, etc.

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Primary Location

The survey asked about your primary location in the Phoenix Metro Area. It likely comes as no surprise that most respondents indicated that they were on the eastern side of town, at least in part due to the meeting location and that it was founded there. It does make me wonder if there are more developers in the north and west who would be interested in meetings closer to their part of town.

Map showing 0% in the Southwest and South Valley; 3% in the Northwest and Far Southwest Valley; 6% in North, West, and Central Valley; 18% in East Valley; 28% in Northeast Valley; and 32% in Southeast Valley.
Primary Location: Where in town do you live, work, or spend most of your time? (Click for larger size)


Programming Experience

Graph showing the colors for None, Some, Quite A Bit, and A Lot
Programming Experience Key

The respondents are nearly all developers of some kind, which certainly makes sense. It’s interesting to see (and pleases my geeky heart) that most folks are experienced with writing native iOS apps in Objective-C and not with the various cross-platform code-generating frameworks. The survey choices for each Programming Experience question were None, Some, Quite a Bit, or A Lot.

Graph showing 3% None, 24% Some, 26% Quite a Bit, 47% A Lot

Programming Experience:
Any language or platform

Graph showing 15% None, 28% Some, 38% Quite a Bit, 19% A Lot

Programming Experience:
iOS — Cocoa Touch and Objective-C, C, or C++

Graph showing 70% None, 21% Some, 3% Quite a Bit, 6% A Lot

Programming Experience:
iOS — Game/animation programming with or without a framework like Cocos2D, Sparrow, or Unity 3

Graph showing 91% None, 6% Some, 3% Quite a Bit, 0% A Lot

Programming Experience:
iOS — Cross-platform native-code-generating framework like Titanium, MonoTouch, or Corona

Graph showing 91% None, 6% Some, 3% Quite a Bit, 0% A Lot

Programming Experience:
iOS — Cross-platform web framework like PhoneGap or Sencha Touch

Graph showing 60% None, 25% Some, 3% Quite a Bit, 12% A Lot

Programming Experience:
iOS — Web app without a cross-platform framework

Graph showing 40% None, 43% Some, 9% Quite a Bit, 9% A Lot

Programming Experience:
OS X — Cocoa and Objective-C, C, or C++



Software Publishing

Graph showing colors for Never, Helped, and Created
Publishing Experience Key

Most of the respondents have published or helped publish an iOS app, though there’s a larger percentage than I would have guessed who have not. The survey choices for each Software Publishing question were Never, Helped Create, or Created and Published.


Graph showing 33% Never, 9% Helped Create, 59% Created and Published

Software Publishing:
iOS App in the App Store

Graph showing 88% Never, 3% Helped Create, 9% Created and Published

Software Publishing:
Mac app in the App Store

Graph showing 78% Never, % Helped Create, 22% Created and Published

Software Publishing:
Mac app outside of the App Store

Graph showing 42% Never, 10% Helped Create, 48% Created and Published

Software Publishing:
Other Published Software


Survey Comments

Comments added to survey responses included the following:

The only reason I ranked CODING so low is it seems to devolve into a my style is better than your style war… realize it may be beneficial for noobs.

Good insight, this is definitely something we can work on. I’ll prepare my Dr. Evil “Zip It.”

I’m a rookie “new guy” but many of you have been helping me a great deal. I take classes, study tutorials, and watch Stanford video’s, go to NSCoder meetings as well… I am just starting my 2nd year of this adventure…

Very glad to hear that a “noob” finds the meetings useful.

The meetings are far far far too long. At least they were. I stopped going because the 2-3 hour meetings were a drain. People need time boxes and have them enforced so that people can be there. I would much rather see less quantity more quality content.


I stopped attending Pi meetings some months ago, mostly because the hour-long attendee introductions were redundant and non-productive. The resulting 3-4 hour meetings were way too long. 2 hours total from start-to-finish is plenty.

Since I started running the meetings last August, once I got into the groove I think I’ve been successful keeping the length to 2 hours (7-9), running over no more than 15 minutes (with the exception of the accessibility meeting). It’s meant pushing some presentations to future months, but I think it’s been worth it. I’ve been planning to do this for a while, but starting next meeting I’ll be using an iPad presenter’s clock, showing the presenter the allotted time remaining.

To those who haven’t been to a meeting in a while, I encourage you to check one out again.

I actually like what the current structure is like. Start out with meeting info, then industry news, then into app demos and/or coding suggestions/tips/hints. I was at one of the meetings where Jiva spoke about delegates and the proper way to implement. I thought it was very well done and insightful.


I liked last nights with your info of “debugging magic” from Apple and the other things like Langwich Translation,, Testflight, etc.

Based on the survey results I’ll either be cutting the news out or slimming it way, way down, reserving it for major product/OS announcements and the like. The new website (soon, soon) will better present a lot of the news info, and will serve as a better resource.

More topics for beginners

That would be great, I’ll definitely solicit some. If we keep the beginning tutorials and such to 20 minutes or so, it should keep experienced folks from becoming too bored while better serving the beginners.

It’s all good, I am just happy these meetings continue…

Me too!