Apple is working on a "new secret project," only its existence isn't really secret because it was Apple that told us about it. The company posted a job description (spotted by MacRumors) for a UI designer in the world of "Maps" to help develop, "an advanced web platform upon which many of Apple's future services will be based."
Which just plain sounds exciting, right? What it means, of course, remains to be seen, but one easy guess is that Apple is planning to bring Apple Maps to the Web. Currently, the company's mapping service exists only on iOS devices and in a beta standalone app that's a part of Mavericks.
There's one line in the job summary, though, that gives me hope that this is something even bigger. "In this highly visible position," the company said, "the successful candidate will collaborate with cross-functional engineering teams to define and implement some of the web pages [sic] for the system that will power next generation Apple products." [My emphasis.]
Some of the webpages? Why that specificity? Is it because the mapping portion of this project is just that, a mapping portion? I am hoping Apple is working on a search engine, something I have long thought would help Apple with Siri and other services the company seems to believe is important.
That's blatant speculation on my part, and there is nothing in this job posting to back it up other than the (most likely innocuous) clause I quoted above.
Here's the job posting in full:
Web UI Designer - Maps
Job Number: 29726866
Santa Clara Valley, California, United States
Posted: Sep. 27, 2013
Weekly Hours: 40.00
At Apple, we're lucky to be working on projects that have the potential to change the world. We're working on an exciting new system and need your help. You would be joining a small team working on an advanced web platform upon which many of Apple's future services will be based. We are looking for an extremely capable front-end engineer who has a strong background in web services development, and who has built high-performance, scalable and extensible systems. In this highly visible position, the successful candidate will collaborate with cross-functional engineering teams to define and implement some of the web pages for the system that will power next generation Apple products.
- Minimum 3 years experience building applications and web services
- Deep understanding of DOM, XML, and JSON
- Browser compatibility issues
- Design, develop, and maintain complex front-end code for a new secret project
- Document and build unit tests for your code.
- Work with operations, QA, and product management to maximize product effectiveness