Side Project Spotlight Podcast

PhillyCocoa Presents Side Project Spotlight is a podcast for app builders, documenting the process of producing real apps for the Apple App Store.

Subscribe in your podcast client of choice!


#51: Secret Sauce

Kotaro hosts solo one more time this week to briefly talk about “secret sauces.” No, not the kind you use on nuggets! It’s that ineffable quality of an app that makes you love it vs those annoying anti-patterns often prevalent in apps created just to catch the wave of a hype cycle. Kotaro wants to make apps he loves and that you might love, too! This is a short, but practical and personal essay celebrating some apps that found their “secret sauce. [More Info]

#50: Reading the Tea Leaves 2: Electric Boogaloo

Kotaro is solo this episode due to scheduling issues around the end of summer holiday festivities. But, fear not, this episode is short, but jam packed with advice about opportunities for your next big app as we move into the iOS 17/visionOS world. Widgets, AI, visionOS, Macros, and more! There are so many cool new features in this next generation of updates that can lead to brand new opportunities for success in your developer journey…if you read the tea leaves. [More Info]

#49: An Avalanche of Ads

The trio gather to hear about Steve’s Baltimore e-scooter adventure and the app experience. Then, a brief discussion of Xcode Beta 7 before diving into inspiring visionOS demos found on social media. Multiple bad app ideas are entertained this week, including one based on a classic Kids in the Hall sketch. Kotaro goes into some detail on how hand gesture recognition works today and how it might work in the future while Aaron describes our dystopian nightmare future of inescapable avalanches of ads in immersive environments. [More Info]

#48: Hot Shader Action

The trio continue exploring visionOS despite ongoing beta challenges. Steve updates his experiment with a little more functionality while Kotaro scans a “mutant peach” into a 3D object, and Aaron is stymied in his physics experiments due to inadequate Simulator support. Kotaro provides some insights into what game developers may find familiar and frustrating if they decide to venture into visionOS development before discussing some “hot shader action” coming to SwiftUI in iOS 17. [More Info]

#47: Long Stare & Pixelate the World

The trio continue to suffer the Beta Blues, but Steve did do his pod homework this round and made a very janky visionOS prototype that lets you apply a pixelation filter to a photo! This leads into some good discussion of photo app features that would be appropriate on visionOS interspersed with some “bad app ideas,” a digression about Share Play, and Kotaro & Aaron decide they want to build Cerebro! [More Info]

#46: visionOS Baby Steps

The trio are trying to run the visionOS sample apps, but broken Xcode betas are getting in the way! Undeterred, Kotaro leads a discussion on what you can learn via the four visionOS demo apps (if you get them running). Then, the trio speculates about the forthcoming dev kits, Steve brings up the movie Hackers (because it’s awesome!), and we end the show with some truly “bad app ideas. [More Info]

#45: The Most Complicated Fax Machine Ever

The trio have had some initial hands-on time with the visionOS SDK and are ready to dive into a new development adventure. That’s right, it’s time to pivot! We think visionOS is a rare opportunity that should not be missed by Apple developers. Maybe it’s a big nothing burger, maybe it’ll be a new App Store gold rush, maybe somewhere in between, but the time to start exploring this new platform is now! [More Info]

#44: WWDC23 With Mohammad Azam

The trio are joined by developer and educator, Mohammad Azam to discuss some of the big announcements from WWDC23. Topics include Swift Macros, SwiftData, app architecture patterns, server-side swift, and more! There are ton of great links in the show notes this episode, so be sure to check them out! When you are done, follow some of the links to Azam’s courses and content. We have found his work to be very helpful in our own developer journeys and maybe you will, too! [More Info]

#43: WWDC23 Speculation

Twas the pod before WWDC and the trio decided to enjoy themselves with a little speculation about what gifts Apple will bestow on June 5, 2023. Most of the discussion centers on speculation about the “mythical goggles” rumored to be released along with a brief tangent on widgets, some thoughts on whether Apple will even utter the acronym, “AI,” during the conference, and we end with a nerdy grab bag wishlist of features we hope to see added to Apple’s platforms this year. [More Info]

#42: Championing the iPad With Joe Cieplinski

This week, the trio is joined by our good friend and Philly CocoaHeads alum, Joe Cieplinski. Joe is an accomplished designer who transitioned into iOS development and has built multiple apps for iPhone and iPad. With the recent announcement of Final Cut and Logic on iPad, it feels like a new era of pro iPad apps may be on the horizon and there is no one better to talk to about iPad apps than Joe. [More Info]