"Can I have MSN on my Laptop?"
"No, this is not MSN. On Kates' laptop it looks different."
"I can't get The Sims to install"
"That's because it won't run on Ubuntu."
"Here. Try TuxRacer"
"I want to view this DVD, but the player says it cannot open the disk"
"You have to install the xine_d4d_plugin."
"How? I can't find it in the software database"
"Just dowload the source, then ./configure, make and make install"
"I bought a webcam, to work with skype, but I cannot get the sound to work during a session"
"That's because the sound device is in use by gstreamer. You have to disable gstreamer and turn on OSS emulation for Alsa by installing snd-pcm-oss to get it to work."
Here you go. The reason why Linux's desktop market-share is 1%.
Now, one of the cool thing about developing applications in general these days, is that we have access to the internet as a resource for help. We can find code samples and forums to help us with our problems and challenges. We can talk about it on IRC channels or write blog posts with tips and tricks. With practically all other platforms, this is not a problem. With the iPhone SDK, it is.
Why would Apple do such a thing? With the SDK being in beta, it made perfect sense. But now the SDK is available to everyone, as long as you agree to the SDK, which is just one click. I understand Apple is a company which has a patent on secrecy, but this is just plain stupid. For a healthy developers ecosystem, you need an online comminity these days.
It's another example of the dualism of Apple. The iPhone is a great device. The Operating System is outstanding. The platform and SDK is way ahead of it's time. But still, there is a software lock-in (iTunes), a too controlled doployment channel (App Store), limitations in the software you may distribute and now the NDA.
Developers around the globe are uniting on a website initiated by a developer and twitter-user on this website: http://fuckingnda.com
They're about to just ignore the NDA and set up an iPhone internet portal. Because this is what Apple once used in their commercials:
Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they're not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.