People have speculated about why Apple doesn’t like these 3rd party runtimes. The general conclusion is that Apple craves control over the user experience. While they do want control over the user experience, that is generally not a reason to object to 3rd party tools. After all, the majority of developers using these tools are using them to write games, many of which present their own user experience written completely in OpenGL even when using Apple’s tools.
What Apple does care about is their ability to control their own development cycles. iPhoneOS runs on extremely tight schedules, with a very high degree of secrecy, and at a pace completely controlled by Apple. I know it is popular to claim that maintaining binary compatibility is easy, that is the argument du jour made by people claiming Apple should just support developers using private APIs. Well, they are just wrong. Ask anyone who has been involved with a couple of releases of Mac OS or Windows about the amount of effort involved in keeping old apps working, especially those using private APIs. There is a reason why the majority of current and former framework engineers who comment on the issue come out really strongly against any use of private APIs. To really delve into what it takes would be an entire blog post.
So, if you will indulge my claim that backwards compatibility is hard (even absent the private API issue) it is pretty easy to see why supporting other runtimes is ceding a lot of control to a 3rd party. Imagine if 10% of the apps on iPhone came from Flash. If that was the case, then ensuring Flash didn’t break release to release would be a big deal, much bigger than any other compatibility issues. Since Apple doesn’t have access to Flash CS5’s runtime library code or compiler frontend, they might be put in a position where they would need to coordinate with Adobe to resolve those issues. Shipping a new release where Apple breaks any specific application, even a top seller, is not an issue if the release is compelling, most apps work, and Apple has the option of working with the vendor to help them fix their app. Shipping a release where they break a large percentage of apps is not generally an option. Letting any of these secondary runtimes develop a significant base of applications in the store risks putting Apple in a position where the company that controls that runtime can cause delays in Apple’s release schedule, or worse, demand specific engineering decisions from Apple, under the threat of withholding the information necessary to keep their runtime working.
This isn’t some perceived risk, I can think of incidents where Apple reverted OS changes, dumped new APIs, or was forced to committing massive engineering resources to something it did not want to do because a Must Not Break™ app vendor told them to. Apple does not want to give anyone that sort of influence over them. So ultimately, preventing Flash on the platform is about control, but is not control over the user experience of the Flash applications, or even the languages used. It is about the runtimes they bring on to the system, and Apple’s control over future releases of iPhone OS.
Security at one of the major regional airports in the Australian state of NSW is under scrutiny after a secure entrance was found to have a secret PIN code posted clearly on a gate.
“It was raining. I thought I could park anywhere if the weather was bad.”
We live in a culture where accountability and responsibility are forgotten values. When “mistakes are made” they are always made by someone else.
A furious transatlantic row has erupted over quotes that were attributed to a retired Italian bishop, which suggested that Jews were behind the current criticism of the Catholic church’s record on tackling clerical sex abuse.
A website quoted Giacomo Babini, the emeritus bishop of Grosseto, as saying he believed a “Zionist attack” was behind the criticism, considering how “powerful and refined” the criticism is.
On September 24th 2006 Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, of Zambia, defied the Vatican by ordaining four married priests. On September 26th the Vatican issued a press release announcing that he had been excommunicated for “ordaining bishops without the approval of the Holy See.”
On December 11th 2006, in defiance of that excommunication, Milingo ordained a further four married priests in Washington. On December the 17th, six days later, the Vatican issued a press release announcing that he had been dismissed “from the clerical state” — apparently an extraordinary measure that made the participation of Catholics in any ceremonies led by him unlawful (in the eyes of the church). “The commission of these grave crimes, which has recently been established,” said the press release, “is to be considered as proof of the persistent contumacy of Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo. The Holy See has therefore been obliged to impose upon him the further penalty of dismissal from the clerical state.” All the clergy he ordained were excommunicated automatically too.
Milingo had been defying the church for many years. But when he finally committed what the Vatican thought was a ‘grave crime’, there was no delay. Flagrantly breaking with the doctrine of celibacy was met with swift, decisive condemnation. The men he ordained were removed immediately too.
In 1978 the Reverend Stephen Kiesle, of Oakland, California, pleaded no contest to charges of tying up and molesting two young boys in a rectory. He was not removed from the church until 1987, despite requesting it himself in 1981.
Palm Inc. , creator of the Pre smartphone, is seeking bids for the company as early as this week, according to three people familiar with the situation.
The company is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Frank Quattrone ’s Qatalyst Partners to find a buyer, said the people, who declined to be identified because a sale hasn’t been announced. Taiwan’s HTC Corp. and China’s Lenovo Group Ltd. have looked at the company and may make offers, said the people.
Dell Inc. looked at Palm, though it decided against an offer, according to two of the people familiar with the matter. Jess Blackburn , a spokesman for the Round Rock, Texas-based computer maker, didn’t respond to a call for comment.