Lifestyles of the rich and famous independent software developer

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Victor Broido, COO at DigiDNA, talks about his work and lifestyle during Alt-WWDC in San Francisco June 3, 2014. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
DigiDNA COO Victor Broido is living the dream -- and talking it up at AltConf 2014. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — Victor Broido has an enviable lifestyle. He lives and works 200 yards from a sun-kissed beach. He often kitesurfs before work. Sometimes he surfs during work.

“It was my dream, as a kid, to surf for an hour before going to the office,” Broido said. “That’s my life. It’s happening right now.”

You might want to punch Broido in the face upon hearing this, but he’s the nicest, most self-deprecating guy. You can’t begrudge him anything. Plus, he worked to attain this way of life.

Broido and his colleagues run DigiDNA, an eight-person company based in Geneva, Switzerland, with a satellite office in Geraldton, a small city in remote Western Australia with a reputation for world-class water sports.

DigiDNA is one of thousands of small, independent software developers spawned by the mobile revolution. In 2013, Apple’s App Store revenues topped $10 billion, and a lot of that money flowed to small startups. There are small indies in every category, from games to databases. Lots of them flocked to San Francisco last week for Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference. DigiDNA was a gold sponsor of last week’s AltConf, the alternative conference that ran parallel to Apple’s event. (DigiDNA has also sponsored Cult of Mac’s Cultcast in the past.)

Yosemite, iOS 8 and the new features we love most on this week’s CultCast

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Wow! This year’s WWDC keynote was one of the most important in years, and on this week’s CultCast, we unpack all the new features announced for Yosemite and iOS 8, and tell you which ones we can’t believe we ever lived without. Plus, with so many new developer APIs and a whole new programming language, we think Apple in on the verge of something big, and if you thought they had cool products before… well, hold on to your butts.

Snicker your way through each week’s best Apple stories! Stream or download new and past episodes of The CultCast now on your Mac or iDevice by subscribing on iTunes, or hit play below and let the uproarious good time commence.

And thanks to Lynda.com for supporting this episode! Learn at your own pace from expert-taught video tutorials at Lynda.com.


Click on for the show notes.

The complete video guide to WWDC 2014

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As months have passed since Apple’s last keynote revealing any official news to look forward to, this week they’ve broken their silence. Apple CEO, Tim Cook, and many other official representatives revealed details on upcoming software, in the forms of OS X Yosemite and iOS 8. Take a look at the video to see a complete guide to of all of this week’s news and be sure to return next week for another.

Subscribe to CultOfMacTV on youtube.com to catch new episodes of the roundup and other great video reviews, how-to’s and more.

My OS X Yosemite nightmare (and how you can avoid a similar fate)

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Don't let this happen to you. Screengrab and photos: Joshua Smith/Cult of Mac
Don't let this happen to you. Screengrab and photos: Joshua Smith/Cult of Mac

An overwhelming sense of eagerness overtook me after Apple showed off OS X Yosemite at WWDC. The redesigned interface and accompanying features, like a spruced-up Spotlight and the ability to take phone calls on your Mac, made downloading the beta version too intriguing to pass up.

Little did I know that moments after finalizing the installation, I would encounter a massive problem that would send me on an emotional ride.

Coders grapple with good and evil at WWDC’s indie spinoff

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Bill Atkinson, left and Andrew Stone chat each other up at AltConf in San Francisco June 3, 2014. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Apple legend Bill Atkinson, left, and Andrew Stone talk Steve Jobs, drugs and the Internet at AltConf 2014 in San Francisco. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

SAN FRANCISCO — At Apple’s WWDC developer conference, there are talks about interface design, writing code and fixing bugs.

Across the street at indie spinoff AltConf, the talks are concerned with spying on users and making choices between good and evil.

“We have had a hand in creating one of the most dystopian and undesirable societies imaginable,” said Andrew Stone, a veteran programmer who once worked with Steve Jobs, during a talk entitled “What Have We Built Here?”

It’s not the kind of stuff you’d expect to hear at a developer’s conference, but in an age of widespread government spying and cynicism about corporate slogans like “Don’t be evil,” AltConf highlights that programmers are often presented with moral choices. There’s a growing awareness in the coding community that although the activity of programming is benign, what’s created can be used for evil. Take Maciej Cegłowski’s talk last month in Germany, which has been widely discussed on the Web. Cegłowski argues — convincingly — that the utopian ideals of the early internet have been thoroughly corrupted, and the entire industry is “rotten.”

Apple distances itself from Google even more in iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite

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The new Spotlight search in Yosemite (photo: Roberto Baldwin/ The Next Web)
The new Spotlight search in Yosemite (photo: Roberto Baldwin/ The Next Web)

Apple and Google aren’t the good friends they used to be thanks to the rise of Android as the iPhone’s main competitor. Ever since Apple axed Google Maps in iOS 6, it has been clear that Google’s days in Apple’s software are numbered.

The hardest Google service for Apple to replace is undoubtedly search. Siri is slowly becoming its own search engine of sorts that draws from multiple services like Wolfram Alpha and Wikipedia, but Google has remained the standard for traditional web search.

In iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, Google is still set as Safari’s default search engine. But with the introduction of more search partners in Apple’s new software, it’s hard to believe that Google search will enjoy its prominence for much longer.

Uncovering 8 mysterious new iOS 8 features

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Apple’s WWDC keynote just days ago brought us many new iOS 8 features to look forward to downloading this Fall. Thanks to an immediate downloadable beta version open for developers, many have found even more useful features and changes not mentioned on Apple’s big stage. In today’s video your host Joshua Smith introduces eight of his top hidden iOS 8 features.

Take a look at the video to see what you think.

iOS 8 hands-on: See powerful new features in action

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As Apple has finally announced the long-awaited iOS 8, it’s only natural for users to be curious how it will affect their daily routines. With all new features and enhancements for your iOS device, in today’s video see what’s coming this fall, and what we think about it.

Take a look at the video to see what you think.