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Establish a security certificate for your website the easy and affordable way with ZeroSSL.
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Apple and Google’s contract-tracing system to ban Location Services access

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New guidelines are meant to help developers create easy-to-understand contact tracing apps.
Photo: Apple/Google

Apple and Google released additional details about their coronavirus contact-tracing system Monday, informing public health officials that they will not be able to use Location Services to track people. The companies also said they will limit use of the contact-tracing API to one per country.

Both companies also showed off what an app might look like on people’s smartphones — and shared sample pieces of code local governments could use in their own mobile apps.

Apple acquires Italian startup that specializes in backend automation

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The Stamplay team.
Photo: Il Sol 24 Ore

Apple recently acquired a startup that could soon help the iPhone-maker deliver better backend tools to iOS and macOS developers.

Stamplay, an Italian startup that specialized in building a “low code workflow automation” platform, was reportedly purchased by Apple for about $5.6 million. The acquisition hasn’t been confirmed by Apple but there are some telltale signs that Stamplay’s tech has found a new home.

Twitter calmly explains why it broke your favorite apps

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Many of the features of Tweetbot, Twitterrific, and similar apps just stopped working. Twitter's CEO tells us why.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Despite protests, Twitter made changes today that break some features of popular third-party apps. The company’s CEO explains that all Twitter is doing is finally enforcing a 9-year-old policy.

Rob Johnson says the company will no longer devote resources to apps it didn’t want built in the first place. The situation is a bit more complex that that, though.

macOS Mojave changes spell doom for indie Mac games

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Apple is making life a lot harder for smaller game studios.
Photo: Cult of Mac

A big change Apple is making with macOS Mojave could make it more difficult for indie developers to build cross-platform games.

Apple is pushing game creators to drop OpenGL in favor of its own Metal API, which isn’t supported by third-party platforms. It may mean smaller game development teams are forced to choose between releasing on macOS or other operating systems.

Twitter won’t break third-party apps (at least not yet)

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Twitter
Twitter delayed a controversial change that may squeeze out third-party apps.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Twitter today pushed back a change to its service that will prevent third-party applications from offering notifications to their users. The services that Talon, Tweetbot, Tweetings, and Twitterrific depend on will still be shut down. It just won’t happen when originally planned.

The replacement Twitter is working on might be completely unsuited for the needs of these third-party developers. And deliberately so. They’re trying to get the company to change course.

Customer service on Twitter just got a big upgrade

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Twitter has changed its mind on deleting inactive user accounts (for now)
Twitter is crushing dreams in 2020.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Twitter has made new tweaks that make it easier for businesses to provide customer service through direct message.

Its more relaxed rules mean that businesses can more freely reply to customers who need support without having to worry about reaching a direct message limit. Spam accounts will still find it difficult to bombard users with junk, however.

Twitter begins long-awaited crackdown on bots

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Twitter
Will Facebook and Instagram follow suit?
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Twitter has finally begun its long-awaited crackdown on bots.

The company has made changes to its API that make it significantly harder for services to batch tweet to multiple accounts, retweet, follow users, and more. This puts a stop to the software that powers Twitter bots.