Interesting Links #13

Hurricane Matthew

I love watching weather, so you can bet that I was keeping a close eye on Hurricane Matthew. As much as I love the mechanics of how hurricanes work, I’m also saddened at the loss of life, limb, and property that the hurricane caused.

Aside from actually being present in the affected areas and providing help that way, money is probably the next best thing. If you can, would you consider sending some money to Haiti who was hit especially hard as well as to others who were affected?

Walled Gardens

  • Well, this isn’t good news: Apple removed Dash from the App Store. I have no idea what really went on, but suffice to say, it is something we should all be aware of as app developers, whether we like it or not. When we play in someone else’s walled garden, we always take the risk of being kicked out, fairly or unfairly. Something to think about, that’s for sure.

PhoneGap / Cordova

  • This is BIG: PhoneGap Build now supports CLI projects! This doesn’t mean everything you can do with the CLI is supported (hooks are a good example), but it does support the same directory structure and also supports the merges directory. This is a game changer!

  • Apache Cordova currently supports 0.x versions of Node.js, but that’s about to go away. 0.x support is now officially deprecated, and will no longer be supported at the start of 2017. 4.x support will end in April of 2017. Now’s the time to start testing so that you aren’t caught by surprise in a few months!

  • Apache Cordova also pushed a few new releases. This time, the geolocation plugin was updated, as well as cordova-create and the “Hello World” template.

Mobile Hybrid App Development

  • CSS-Tricks has a article reminding you not to use :hover, since it causes the annoying mobile double-tap link issue. Personally, I use :active to provide affordances when the user presses on an element, but it’s worth mentioning that the element must have a corresponding touch listener attached, or Mobile Safari won’t try to render :active at all.


Random thoughts

  • If you’re my age, you might remember a little game called ZZT. It was a shareware game that used ASCII graphics to render a flat world, and allowed you to interact with various elements within the world. It was quite fun, and I have very fond memories of it. It also included the ability to create your own games, which means that for some it was the first exposure to that capability. MegaZeux was something of a followup to ZZT, but is there anything quite like it today? Fuzzy Notepad asks that question and has some interesting ideas with “Succeeding MegaZeux”

  • Ever wonder what Minecraft would look like rendered on a sphere instead of a flat surface? Now you know!. This video explains a lot of how it was accomplished. Caveat: this uses Minetest, a clone of sorts that’s imminently hackable.

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