Ketchapp steal / dev entitled

A friend passed on this story that he found on the front page of reddit. The cliff notes version is that slimy app “makers” Ketchapp (of 2048 “fame”), screwed over another developer, and stole his idea. This sucks, they suck, there is no getting away from that fact. In my mind, Ketchapp are a scourge on not only the App Store, but the development community as a whole.

That being said, as I read this post, I felt like I was missing something. Wasn't I supposed to be feeling sorry for this gentleman? Why did I not care about his hardship? Let's pull out a few choice quotes.

“I knew I could easily churn out the kind of crap that ends up on the top charts”

Woah, don't set the bar too high!

“You know all of those indie overnight successes? Behind each one is a shitload of marketing money and glad-handing.”

Really? You actually know that no indie app that has shot to fame without big money backing and ass-kissing? Way to sound like an entitled asshole.

“I’m the goddamn Tesla of crappy apps”

Quite the comparison. The guy just seems so likeable. But maybe I'm being harsh, maybe he isn't that bad.

“I’m upset that two French brothers can sit around eating baguettes while stealing games from independent developers with no viable resources”

Oh, casual racism. I can't wait to be on your side now. Stay tuned for some sharp, never-before-heard analysis.

“As it stands, the top charts are a race to the bottom”

No way! But don't worry! He has a plan to save us…

“I still dream of my games about balls and cats to be at the top of the charts”

Questionable grammar aside, those are some limited dreams dude. But it's ok, he's an idealist

“it’s no longer enough to be a developer — we must become capitalists”

I'm no business guru, but I would have figured the time to do that was when you started a company. It's ok though, he's a professional, it's not like he would begin an email to Ketchapp with the words “Hey Ketchup”…

It may seem like I'm being really hard on a guy who genuinely got ripped off, and, well, I am. I find this sort of behavior abhorrent. No-one should get ripped off like this, however, he really makes it hard for me to feel sympathetic towards him.

Also, why is the Flappy Bird gif not of actual gameplay? Flappy Bird doesn't control like that.

Indie devs choose iOS over Android

(Update: This was a link to the Penny Arcade Report, which has now been shut down, and disappeared from the internets forever apparently. It included interviews with developers of iOS apps looking to port them to Android, detailing roadblocks the Google was putting in their way.)

An interesting piece on why indie game developers, who seem to be more prevalent in the mobile space than on PC or console, are choosing iOS over Android.

The commonly held belief was that this was due to Android device/OS fragmentation, and the willingness of iOS users to buy apps. Even though there was a perception that Android was currently leading in marketshare, the money was to be made on iOS. However, this suggests a problem with Google and the Play Store.

Surely Google don’t believe that the Play Store is such a success at this point that they can be deliberately belligerent? Or do they just not devote the resources to ensure that the developers, as well as the users, get a great experience interacting with the Google Play Store? I understand they don’t want shoddy ports, but Android needs the ‘killer apps’, not only to get people in the door, but to ensure that they stay there once new contract time comes around. The developer environment has to be cultivated and nurtured. Apple didn’t just create the App Store, and let everything else happen by chance.

Google Reader’s Shutdown

There was a time not too long ago (like when the shutdown was announced), that this would have had me screaming foul play, but things are different now.

I have been set free.

Only in this post-Google Reader world can I see what an albatross round my neck it actually was. Checking it every day felt like work. If I was offline for a day or two, I couldn’t face attempting to sort through the mess that would await me. Yes, I subscribed to too many high-volume feeds, but even managing the feeds I subscribed to was daunting. It’s part of the reason why I still have accounts in a number of Google services, I feel tied to the legacy I have within them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still very much in the ‘pro-RSS’ camp, and to that end, I couldn’t be happier with my switch to Feed Wrangler.

I won’t be doing a full review, there are already comprehensive reviews out there, you should read them. It’s actually a casual pleasure to browse my RSS feeds now, innovations like ‘Smart Streams’ are the kinds of forward steps that we would never have taken (the royal ‘we’) without the fall of the all-conquering Google Reader.

Like Marco, I am very optimistic about the future. I can’t wait to see what our community comes up with in reponse to the next beloved service that Google decides to sunset.

10 Billion Android Market downloads and counting

According to this blogpost on the Official Google Blog, the Android Market has now passed 10 billion downloads.

Not to say that this isn’t impressive, especially with the fragmentation issues (not to mention the different forks of Android, some not even including the Android Market), but I would love to see how many of them were free apps. Not only that, but if these numbers also include apps that were downloaded and then returned. I suspect that they do.

Another point of interest, how much money have these downloads earned for developers?