The Choices

At the core, I’m running a business here. I really want to learn how to program in ObjC/Cocoa, but my day job keeps me pretty busy, and I haven’t had the time to really, really learn it. Yet, I’ve got some potentially great ideas here that I’d like to put on the market. What to do?I joined the Toronto chapter of Cocoaheads — Tacow — first of all. There I met other local Cocoa developers, all at varying stages of knowledge. From them, I gleaned two possible means of getting the job done. They are:

Option 1: Get a Partner. Since I can’t code myself, I should partner with someone who can. There are some great reasons for doing this. First off, I can bring the vision to the partnership — do you know how many coders are out there, wondering what app to code? They don’t have any ideas! I have ideas! I could be like Cabel Sasser, and the partner can be my Steve Frank. We know that this kind of partnership can work.

And yet. I’ve now been through two partner attempts. In both cases, the Steve Frank decided that other things were more important. Maybe my ideas suck. Or maybe people who can code are in such high demand right now with the iPhone platform opening up. Or whatever! They’re definitely not working with me.

This has actually been my experience in other endeavours in the past. Finding someone to share your vision and execute on it? Insanely difficult. Which explains the success of Panic Software, curse their innovative, cool, hip, west-coast-living hides.

Option 2: Suck It Up. David LeBer is co-head of Tacow, and he related to me how he learned Cocoa: he got a job developing a Cocoa app. He didn’t know shit about the frameworks, except for what he knew coming from his experience as a WebObjects developer. But the pressure of having to perform pushed him to glean what he needed to get the job done.

That’s a pretty extreme move to make, and it relies as much on confidence as it does on your ability to… ahem… omit certain information from your client when questions of prior experience come up.

Having tried option 1, and figuring I don’t have the parts for option 2, I created Option 3: knuckling down and writing my own damn app.

Next: Introducing Napkin