Apple Says "No Dice" On Child Friendly Programming App

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ilikeimac

I haven't read the iPhone developer's agreement, but I'm curious to know how they define "interpreters" and whether Omni's web browser uses its own JavaScript interpreter or not. At one end of the spectrum there are interpreters that execute low level instructions such as Java byte code, and these empower programmers to write tight infinite loops, reference arbitrary memory or hog RAM like crazy. On the other end of the spectrum are interpreters for rigorously-checked kid-friendly languages that can be "written" by dragging, dropping, stretching, etc. You could even go further and say that a drawing app "interprets" gestures in order to execute code that draws figures on the screen.

I'm just saying this will be pain to enforce consistently given the vast grey expanse between things that are definitely interpreters and things that aren't. I'm okay with Apple not wanting to support Flash in its browser and I understand its reasons for not wanting to allow Flash-to-app compilers (though I think they might be hurting themselves here).

And what about a word processor that supports its own macro language? Or those classic "battle bot" type games where the players write AI for their tanks rather than controlling them manually? (And BTW where can I get one of those? My Google searches turn up nothing but noise since "robot" and "AI" and "game" are so generic.)

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mattc986

As much as it stinks, at least Apple is trying to be somewhat consistent here, and I think in the long run that is a good thing. The rules of the App store state that you can't run arbitrary code nor (as of recently) can you use other external compilers. I don't think anyone at Apple wants to keep kids from learning basic programming on an iPad, but when it comes down to it it's just not fair to deny Flash-made apps and other types of apps that execute 'arbitrary' code and allow this one because it's deemed harmless and for kids.

Perhaps Apple could set up a program where the developer wanting to get such an app approved could work more closely with Apple to keep the strict environment that makes the iPhone OS wonderful while allowing in these special cases. Apple is by no means required to take that extra step, but I think it would certainly serve to earn some good faith.

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robilonsteven

in real apple is very complex it basically not easy to use for child

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