This blog is closed

May 18th, 2008

I’m closing this blog today.

I simply can’t give the necessary time and I’m constantly feeling guilty because of that. Worse - today I found out that someone used a bug in the blog software to add HTML code to every page. That’s the problem when you do not update the software from time to time.

Therefore I’m converting this blog to static pages as an archive. I probably will still release source code from time to time but will reference to it from other pages like CocoaDev.

If you have feedback to any archived post please drop me an email at martinkahr at gmail.

GravityApps.com launched

March 20th, 2008

Today something big is happing for me. GravityApps.com is the successor for CASE Apps.

While CASE Apps was basically a platform to promote the applications that I have written, Gravity is something bigger. CASE Apps was a single person thing while Gravity is driven by a number of very cool people. We have dedicated resources for the different products and other things (marketing, graphics) that have to be done. We are still small and some of us are doing this beside their main job. But these new resources make it possible to push existing products and to come up with new ones.

I’m very happy about how this all went by now and I’m looking forward to the future and how it further develops.

But now you should check out the mew website and get the updates that we provide for all our products.

AlterEgo, Core Animation and Divide & Conquer

November 29th, 2007
AlterEgoScreenshot.jpg

Today AlterEgo has gone live. AlterEgo provides stunning cool effects for iChat and Photobooth.

Core Animation

AlterEgo is heavily using Core Animation for all kind of things. Be it the Coverflow effect (check out the developer samples for a good start on that), morphing buttons, blurred backgrounds and more.

After the initial problems I fell in love with Core Animation. It’s incredible fun to fine tune your UI (with minimal development effort if you know the concepts and problems :). In pre-Core-Animation times you typically sub-classed a control class and tweaked and adopted the UI that way or you implemented a custom NSView. Now with Core Animation a great number of things can be done by applying filters on existing controls and by using one of the CALayer subclasses.

Some things don’t work as expected (at least not as I would expect) and I spend countless hours on occasional flickering in animations or other wired things. I’ll write some blog entries about the things I found out and how I solved problems. So stay tuned if you are interested in that.

Devide & Conquer

I developed a number of Mac applications until today. What makes AlterEgo different is the fact that I haven’t done it alone. I have a partner who works with me on that. We split work, gave each other feedback and together decided about features and the UI.

I worked in big teams in previous jobs and this kind of working together was missing when I did Sofa Control or Searchlight. So I’m very thankful to have a partner to do AlterEgo. We’ll see what the future brings. Right now it looks very bright.

More to come

Right now a friend is working on a major update of Searchlight. It will be great. And a totally new version of Composition Builder is on the road with incredible new features.

So stay tuned for more great things in the near future.

Remote Control Wrapper 2.0

July 26th, 2007

More than a year ago I released the first version of a Objective-C class to interact with the Apple Remote Control. With Sofa Control 2.x this wrapper got some great new features. Today these changes are released to the public as a version 2.0.

I strongly recommend to upgrade to the new version of the wrapper. Hopefully the new features awake your interest.

New Features

  • Support for Leopard (9A466, 9A499)
  • Extension mechanism to support different remote controls. Beside the Apple Remote Control the wrapper comes with support for
  • Simulation of hold events and multi-click events
  • Cooperation mode to share the remote control devices among applications
  • Bug fixes

Let’s see how easy it is to use the new wrapper code in your application with some sample code.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sofa Control Review

June 7th, 2007

Sofa Control got a very nice review from MacsimumNews

We are very proud to get a 10 out of 10 from Dennis Sellers. Thanks!

… the included tutorial is one of the best-designed (and best looking) I’ve ever seen.

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No one want’s to read a manual. Therefore it’s important that the user builds up the knowledge to use an application in a minimum of time. The goal of Sofa Control’s tutorial was to introduce the application by using the application. The tutorial is done with Keynote and just a simple PDF which you navigate by using the remote control.

The tutorial is one thing. Beside that the application must be intuitive and well designed. Both are difficult things to do and we try to improve both with each new version.