On Thursday, I served on a Mac OS X Shareware panel with Bob "The Little iTunes Book" LeVitus (send the check to my house, Bob). We had a grand time that included a recalcitrant PowerBook and a few other glitches [Note to self: Next time, spend more time with Pepper before you talk about it], but the audience was absolutely fantastic. What does this have to do with the future of the Mac platform? There was a young man in the audience, and by "young man" I mean "kid," who is just that, the future of the Mac platform.
It all started when Bob was talking about TinkerTool. Someone in the audience asked where one could get the app because the last time he had been to TinkerToolis Web site, he said there was a cease-and-desist order from Apple (for the record, I have no idea if this gentleman was correct, but if you hit the site now, you can download it with no problems).
Hereis where the kid enters the picture.
He held up his hand and waited earnestly for us to call on him. When we did, he said "I have a program I wrote that does almost everything TinkerTool does." Eh? What? You do? "Yes, I wrote it at MacHack." He eyes wandered a little when he spoke, not quite looking at us while doing so. What? You wrote this? "Yes." What did you use? "REALbasic." Itis called More Prefs and you can find it at his Web site, Atommic.com. How old are you? "Iill be 12 next month."
The whole room pretty much burst into applause at that point because we were all just kind of awestruck to have such a young person making apps for Mac OS X (he was actually only the 3rd youngest participant at MacHack 2001, which is even more cool!).
I havenit tried More Prefs yet, so I donit know whether or not the product is any good. Thatis hardly the point, however, because the app could be one of the worst pieces of software on the face of the planet and I would still be just as excited as I am now. Bringing in young people to the Mac platform is essential to the growth of that platform, and bringing in young developers is even more important. When there are 11 year old kids interested in making apps for Mac OS X, the future of the platform is bright indeed. It is these "kids," these developers, that will be making the future of the Mac platform a bright future. Knowing that there are young people like this working to make cool X apps helps me sleep a little better at night. From The Mac Observer, thanks for your hard work, and keep hacking out that code!