Archive for October, 2011

C++ Renaissance? I’m not so sure.

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

Leonardo da Vinci. Not to be confused with Leonardo da Turtle.

I’ve seen various posts lately talking about a “C++ Renaissance”.  I’m trying to make some sense of this, and mainly to figure out whether it’s true.

It seems there is some belief that just because there is a new C++ standard (C++11, formerly known as C++0x) there is a “renaissance”.  Most of the posts I’ve seen on the subject are basically restatements and requotes from a recent interview with a couple guys on Microsoft’s Visual C++ team.  So far all I can tell is that the VC++ guys are hyping their own product, and some people are buying into it.

I haven’t heard of any widespread transition from Java/PHP/Python/Ruby/Perl/Objective-C/etc to C++.  Server-side developers who are developing for maximum performance may use C++, but they probably already were before the so-called renaissance.  Mobile developers are still primarily using Objective-C on iOS and Java on Android.  Console game developers were already using C++.  Embedded developers will continue (not start) to use C++ if they have the luxury; otherwise they’ll use C or assembler.  Kernel developers will continue to use C.

The major remaining category is desktop apps.  Mac apps are generally written in Objective-C (in fact that’s the only way to access the Cocoa GUI framework).  Linux code is largely written in C.  So the renaissance must be on Windows, right?  Well, Microsoft seems to be the focus of this “renaissance”, and even they aren’t fully embracing C++.  Yes, it will be possible to write Windows desktop apps in C++, but Metro is Microsoft’s latest-and-greatest development tool, and Metro apps are mostly about HTML and Javascript.  And .NET (primarily C#, VB.NET) probably still fits into Microsoft’s plans somewhere.

So where exactly is the renaissance supposed to happen?

Holy crap, iOS 5 finally lets you customize sounds!

Monday, October 17th, 2011

I used to customize all the sounds on my Windows Mobile phone (I feel dirty just saying I had one of those) back around ~2006, and I’ve always wished the iPhone would let me do it. It took a few years, but it finally happened. I’m surprised I haven’t seen this new feature mentioned anywhere.

There has always been an option to customize sounds, but it’s always sucked… until now. iOS 4 and below only let you turn a lot of the alert sounds on and off, but iOS 5 lets you customize each sound:

iOS 4: Lame

iOS 5: Yaaaaaay!

And on top of that, you’re not limited to the built-in alert sounds! You can finally use any ringtone for any alert sound, whether you purchased it from iTunes or made it yourself for free.  For example, I’m using a Saw ringtone to celebrate Halloween.

If you’ll excuse me, I’m off to download some free video game ringtones.

(Edit: I almost forgot to mention you can edit any contact and set their individual text sound as well.)

iPhone fixes

Monday, October 17th, 2011

Over the weekend, I upgraded from an iPhone 4 on AT&T to an iPhone 4S on Verizon.  For the most part, I’ve been happy with it.  But I did have to fix a couple problems.  Here are the problems I had, and the solutions I found.