MacKuba

Kuba Suder's blog on Mac & iOS development

Accessing user location data in iOS 8

Categories: Cocoa, iPhone 1 comment

In iOS 8 Apple made some changes to how apps are supposed to request access to location data. If you use CLLocationManager and you don’t make any changes for iOS 8 compatibility, your app might stop receiving location data at all.

Permission types

The biggest change is that apps can now ask to get location data either “Always” or “While Using”:

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How to add icons to the menu bar on Yosemite

Categories: Cocoa, Mac 4 comments

Mac applications often add their icons to the notification area on the right side of the menu bar. That way they can show you some status changes by changing the icon image, and they can also save some space in your dock by removing the icon from there while still being easily accessible.

If you’re like me, you probably have quite a lot of those there:

The menu bar controls usually display their standard (preferably dark) icon on a standard background by default, and an inverted white icon on a blue background when clicked:

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Making iOS apps compatible with iPhone 6/6+

Categories: Cocoa, iPhone 1 comment

This is the first part of a new (hopefully) longer series of tutorial-like posts. I’m planning to write shorter posts now but more often, based on specific things that I learn while working on my current projects. Let’s see how long I manage to keep this going… :)


Let’s say you have an iOS app that was build for iPhone 5S and earlier. Now that the new iPhones are out, you want to make it work on them too.

If you don’t change anything and just build your app with the latest Xcode and iOS SDK, you’ll see that the app runs on the new iPhones scaled up: the views are rendered on a standard iPhone 5S sized screen and then resized to a bigger resolution like you would resize a static image, together with the top/bottom bars and everything (which obviously doesn’t look good).

To make the app render on the new iPhones natively, you need to let iOS know that it supports them. There are two ways to do that:

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A guide to NSButton styles

Categories: Cocoa, Mac 11 comments

I don’t know about you, but I never know which NSButton to pick from the Interface Builder library panel. When you start looking for a button there, this is what you see:

13 similar buttons in 3 rows

13 different buttons, all described with the same meaningless description:

The NSButton class is a subclass of NSControl that intercepts mouse-down events and sends an action message to a target object when it’s clicked or pressed.

Each of them looks slightly different, but which of these are you supposed to use in what context?

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What's new in ObjectiveC

Categories: Cocoa 0 comments

This post is mostly based on a presentation I’ve done on the last CocoaHeads meeting in Kraków. (If you’re a Cocoa developer and you’re in Kraków on a 2nd Thursday of a month, come say hi!)

Thea idea was basically to collect all the things that have changed in ObjC in the recent years in one place. There were quite a few of these (which is a great thing!) and it’s sometimes hard to remember all of them, especially if you’re trying to update the code of an older project to newer coding style. Hopefully you will also find something here that you didn’t know about before.

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Cocoa JSON parsing libraries, part 2

Categories: Cocoa, iPhone 7 comments

A few months ago I wrote a post about JSON parsing libraries for Cocoa. I compared 4 libraries – BSJSONAdditions, JSON Framework, TouchJSON, and YAJL, I ran a benchmark on all of them, and the conclusion was that YAJL was the fastest and BSJSONAdditions was way slower than the rest.

Last week John Engelhart commented on that post, mentioning his own JSON library JSONKit, claiming that it’s really fast. Of course I had to check if that was true :)

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The longest names in Cocoa

Categories: Cocoa, iPhone 7 comments

Ever since I started coding in Cocoa, I’ve been wondering what might be the longest name used for any function or constant in the entire API. Cocoa names can get quite long in general, so the longest one should be really ridiculously long… Of course I couldn’t leave it like this and I had to find out what it was :)

I ran a search for *.h files on the whole disk, and I determined that the interesting stuff was either in /Developer or in /System/Library/Frameworks, so I limited the search to these directories only. I passed the list of all header files through a Ruby script that looked for the really long ones and sorted them by length, and then I analyzed the results to find the winners (I decided to divide them into a few categories).

So here’s what I’ve found:

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Cocoa JSON parsing libraries

Categories: Cocoa, iPhone 6 comments

Update: A new post from December 2010 with updated stats is available here.


For a few weeks I’ve been working on a new iPhone application.

Like most of other Cocoa apps I’ve written so far, this app also includes a JSON parser to load some kind of data from a server. The first thing the application does when it starts is connect to the JSON API, download a data file (about 100 KB) and parse it. This used to take about 10-15 seconds on the device, and I thought it was reasonable until I noticed that the HTTP response actually arrives after a second or so. So what was it doing for the rest of the time? I had to find out.

So I did some debugging, and it turned out that the 10 seconds are spent just on parsing the downloaded JSON file. That’s pretty bad… Like in all previous apps, I used an open source library BSJSONAdditions, which I knew wasn’t the fastest one available, but I never had any major problems with it before. On the other hand, I never tested it on a 100 KB file…

I knew there were a few other JSON parser libraries in ObjC, so I decided to make a small benchmark and see how well they all compared to the one I used. The other libraries I tried were: JSON Framework, TouchJSON and YAJL.

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