I’ve decided to do something i’ve thought about doing for quite some time… buy a mac and start developing iphone apps. I had planned on getting an iphone & a mac mini over the summer but i never got around to it. I did get an iphone 4 a few weeks ago, but up until now i hadn’t pursued the mac mini idea any further….
Barriers to entry
One of the big ‘problems’ with apple stuff is price. I’ve no doubt if apple made apples they’d be 10 times more expensive than regular apples. At the minute, surprisingly, people don’t seemed to be put off by price. Apple increased the price of their standard mac mini recently and iphone 4 sales have so far topped predictions…
Just today they’ve revealed a new mac book air. Woefully overpriced at €999 for the 11inch version, €1299 for the 13 inch version.
The cheapest mac computer you’ll find today is the mac mini at €799. Crazy stuff. Now i don’t need a brand new mac mini, but picking up a second hand one isn’t easy or cheap either. Realistically it has to have an intel processor, and a couple of gigs of RAM. The cheapest they’ll go for is about €300, that’s if you can find them second hand.
So if you want to dip your toes in to iphone development, it’s gonna be an expensive experience no matter how you go about it.
The need to create
Creating things is pretty important to me. This is creating. There, i’ve created a sentence. It’s mine, forever etched in to the digital history books as my own work. I write every day and i design every day, so i’m creating constantly… churning out more content in a few years than most people produce in a lifetime.
Of course creating doesn’t mean you’re creating anything useful or valuable. You can create crap and i’ll be the first to admit that. But you’d have to be terribly boring and have no imagination whatsoever if you were to create constantly and never hit upon something valuable / useful / interesting. And that’s the whole point of creating something… to create value.
These days i feel college is more about thinking & strategy as opposed to creating. So in that sense, i don’t get much satisfaction from it. If it was a game of chess, we’d make no moves, we’d just contemplate moving and analyse the risks and benefits of moving here rather than there. I suppose at honours degree level & above, that’s to be expected. It’s all about polishing up our thought process.
But i miss the more practical stuff. Which is why i’d like to (a) do more practical stuff (b) do practical stuff that is of interest to me. As i pointed out before, i had planned on doing an iphone development course this year but that course wasn’t approved. So it looks like i may now do it anyway, only it’ll be in my own time and i’ll be the lecturer & student combined…
I’m now on the hunt for a mac mini, but it may take weeks or months before i find something. I refuse to spend €799 on a new one, it’s just not worth it. Getting to grips with a new language and app development won’t be easy, but i’m pretty confident i can end up doing with apps what i can do at the minute with wordpress – play around with it, chuck in some custom design work and produce simple baby apps which will give me great experience and more confidence.