Zack Gage Announces Good Sudoku

Good Sudoku

iOS game developer wizard Zack Gage has revealed their next game and it is coming out in three days. Made by Zach and Jack Schlesinger, Good Sudoku pitches itself as more than a clean puzzle app, but also as an AI-powered teacher to make players better at the game.

I grew up doing sudoku puzzles thanks to my grandmother and Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day. I’ve always wanted a clean, straight-forward Sudoku app for my phone, but found the offerings on the App Store to be flimsy and or sketchy. Good Sudoku looks like what I have been waiting for.

The Comeback of Fun in Visual Design – Apply Pixels

The Comeback of Fun in Visual Design: by Michael Flarup for Apply Pixels via MacStories

What Apple is essentially saying here is that “judicious expressiveness” is allowed. A lifelike rendering style is encouraged.

A designer’s perspective on the macOS Big Sur app icons has given me new insight to the potential impact behind the shift. I was not a fan at first blush. I’m still not sold on all the changes, but I do have a better appreciation for them. Definitely worth a read.

With this approach Apple is legalising a visual design expressiveness that we haven’t seen from them in almost a decade. It’s like a ban has been lifted on fun. This will severely loosen the grip of minimalistic visual design and raise the bar for pixel pushers everywhere. Your glyph on a colored background is about to get some serious visual competition.

Early Apple Silicon DTK Geekbench Scores

Looks like somebody uploaded DTK benchmark results for Geekbench 4, and it completely spanks my iMac even in Rosetta virtualization. We’re finally getting to test the longstanding ‘the chip in this iPad is faster than most Macs’ theory, like for like

Of note: my iMac is eight logical cores at 3.6GHz, 2012-era, the DTK in this result is four cores at 2.4GHz (running under Rosetta emulation)

Steve Troughton-Smith via Twitter

Dannnnnnnng. Imagine what Apple chips will do with fans and thermal headroom and applications running natively…

iOS and macOS Overviews – MacStories

iOS and iPadOS 14: The MacStories Overview by Ryan Christoffel for MacStories

macOS Big Sur: The MacStories Overview by John Voorhees for MacStories

WWDC 2020 was significant for Apple in more ways than one. I may be new to writing about Apple, but I think I can take the way I’ve approached video game coverage here at Max Frequency and apply it to Apple. There is no shortage of insightful and thorough WWDC coverage and observations: I have hours of podcasts already downloaded. As for the big-picture, gut-reaction to the big three operating systems, I turned to MacStories for their overview coverage.

Widgets Galore

Widgets are breaking free of their Today View prison.Yes, Android and other operating systems have had this for years. It is still exciting for those of us that prefer the Apple ecosystem. I promise, it’s okay. Ironically enough, I was recently made aware of these sorts of widgets in jailbreaking from Snazzy Labs.

I actually briefly ran iOS 14 beta 1 on my daily carry (an iPhone Xs Max). Widgets have made me rethink my home screen for the first time in probably half a decade. I’m a habitual person. In my all too brief testing, I just made a whole page of widgets and I think this will be a great addition to iOS, especially when third party developers start rolling theirs out.

App Library

At the end of you pages of apps (which can now be non-destructively hidden) is the App Library. Your phone will automatically organize every app on device. Three icons per category are determined based off use and then a fourth button opens the entire folder of apps in that category. You can even access an alphabetical list of all apps.

I enjoyed my time with this. I already organize my apps in this way with traditional folders, but having both an alphabetical list and these smart top three apps per category sounds great. I enjoyed my time using it, although I did hide my second app page, which caused a serious break in muscle memory. Once it becomes a daily OS, it will simply take time to adapt to these new features, if you so choose.

Messages

Pinning messages. Labeling group chats. In-line replies. Mentions. Emoji search. I cannot wait to use these features when everyone upgrades. Such great improvements.

macOS Big Sur

This is the one I’ve struggled with the most. It’s such a drastic, yet familiar change due to the iOS influence. I’ve been a Mac user for just over decade now. I’ve already pointed out that I am a habitual person. I like the aesthetic of Big Sur, but not on my MacBook Pro, if that makes sense. The app icons are off to me. Windows have a smeary translucency that makes it hard to see what is even selective. I’m very nervous about this one. I skipped macOS Catalina last year (my first time skipping an OS release) and I don’t know if I’ll be passing on Big Sur until I have to use it on an Apple Silicon based Mac.


There has been a ton of great coverage on WWDC this year. Podcasts out the wazoo (The Talk Show with John Gruber, Accidental Tech Podcast, Connected, Upgrade). Great reporting, blog posts, and videos. I had fun slowly whipping up my own quick impressions. I’m looking forward to all the exciting new developments that come from this year’s changes.

Apple Announces the Transition to ARM Apple Silicon for Mac

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During WWDC 2020, Apple officially (and finally) announced the transition of Mac hardware to their own developed chips. The ARM transition is officially called Apple Silicon.

All of the features are still rolling in, but the next era in Mac hardware and software is here. Apple says that the first consumer Mac with Apple Silicon will be released by the end of this year and expect the transition to take two years. Both Microsoft and Adobe already are working on bringing Office and the Creative Cloud to Apple Silicon. Apple also already has built Final Cut Pro X for Apple Silicon.

To help with the transition, Rosetta returns with Rosetta 2 to help convert and emulate software to run on the new chipset. There will also be virtualization support.

For developers, there is a Developer Transition Kit that is a Mac Mini outfitted with an A12Z Bionic chip, which currently resides inside the 2020 iPad Pro. The kit costs developers $500 and they start shipping out next week. The developer must return the computer at some point in the future as well. This will help them develop their software for Apple silicon before the first consumer Mac with these chips are released this year.