The App That’s Selling You

I just spent a week in lovely Costa Rica. My family and I swam, sailed, snorkeled, communed with wildlife and parasailed high above the Pacific Ocean.

We didn’t see any Pokémon. That’s because, unlike much of the rest of humanity, we weren’t looking for any using the app that’s taken the world by storm: Pokémon Go.

Surprisingly, my preteen daughter didn’t object to our Pokémon-free existence. To my great satisfaction, she appears to enjoy more cerebral pursuits… mostly.

But even if she’d begged me, I’d have refused to cave in. No Pokémon Go for us. That’s because I don’t fancy turning my family into tradable data points… and neither should you.

Unfortunately, Pokémon Go is the least of our worries in this respect…

Pokémon Go: The Product Is YOU

Old-timers like me remember actually paying for software. Remember upgrading to a new version of Windows or Microsoft Office every year or so? In those days, getting complex applications for free, like those available for today’s smartphones, was unthinkable.

That’s because, up until about five years ago, the software itself was the product from which developers made their profit. It was no different from selling cars, refrigerators or any other complex manufactured product.

No more. I still pay a nominal fee every year to “subscribe” to updates of some software products, but many that I use daily come completely free.

It’s not that they’re cheap to develop – quite the opposite. Today’s software is orders of magnitude more complex and powerful than the stuff for which we used to pay hundreds of dollars.

That’s because today’s software isn’t the revenue-generating part of the business model. It’s not the main thing being sold for profit.

You are.

Beware Geeks Bearing Gifts

Over the past few years, I’ve warned repeatedly that hacking is only one part of the digital-age threat. Less obvious – and more insidious – is the process by which you are turned into a commodity to be traded for profit by the companies whose products you use.

The best-known examples are big online outfits like Google and social networks like Facebook. Both provide their user-facing services for free. Both, however, spend most of their efforts not on improving those services, but on harvesting information about you that can be sold to the highest bidder.

My favorite example is the poor fellow who searched Google for “pancreatic cancer” and started seeing online ads for funeral homes. Another is the father who received a mailer from some company with the words “DAUGHTER KILLED IN CAR ACCIDENT” printed on the envelope. Some idiot had misconfigured the marketing algorithm, and the targeting criteria were being printed on thousands of mailers.

Google and Facebook (and many others) started out making money by selling microtargeted online ads to third parties like those funeral homes. But they quickly learned that they could make even more money by selling the data that advertisers use to do that microtargeting. Precise figures are hard to find, but given that marketing companies report 200% to 300% increases in revenue using such data, it’s safe to say that the big data harvesters are coining it by selling you to them.

Pokémon Go takes this one step further. It doesn’t have any adverts at all. To the user, it appears completely ad-free. But advertisers will still be paying to get at those users… in a much more dangerous way.

Boldly Going Where No App Has Gone Before

Pokémon Go has been downloaded 20 million times in the U.S. It’s just rolled out in Asia and Europe. Nintendo’s stock price has soared by more than 50% in two weeks. Pokémon Go has already overtaken Twitter in daily active users and is even closing in on Facebook.

While the app is free, users can make in-app purchases like lures to attract Pokémon to your location or “cages” to keep them in. However, the game is about to unleash one of the most potent advertising campaigns in digital history… all by selling frighteningly detailed information about its users.

For example, the app will soon offer “sponsored locations” to paying partners. Geotargeting and geofencing technology will allow advertisers to target specific buildings and match that to signals from mobile devices. Advertisers will know exactly where you are and serve ads based on your precise location – just like that infamous shopping-mall scene from Minority Report.

By paying Pokémon Go’s developers a big fee, a brand like McDonald’s (whose logo has already been spotted in Pokémon Go’s code) will be able to turn its stores into desirable locations in the Pokémon virtual universe. That will draw players to those locations, where they will be tempted to buy stuff “IRL” – in real life. Advertisers will be charged on a “cost per visit” basis, similar to the “cost per click” Google charges advertisers.

Gotta Catch ‘Em All

Initial reports that Pokémon Go harvests detailed Google account information, like the contents of emails, seem to have been incorrect.

But the app’s owners don’t need that stuff. They’re going for something bigger. They want to know your location at all times so they can sell that information to the highest bidder.

Justice Louis Brandeis once defined privacy as “the right to be let alone.” If that’s what you want, it’s up to you to ensure it happens.

The Best Ways to Learn IOS9 Programming Language

iOS9 is the latest adaptation of Apple’s operating arrangement that was appear in June 2015. Apple is one of the three better operating systems that currently boss the smartphone bazaar and is continuously growing at an exponential speed.

As a almsman to iOS8, the new adaptation came with cogent upgrades over its predecessor. This time around, the aggregation focused beneath on the appearance and instead on optimizing the technology beneath the awning and the battery. Some enhancements awning a two-finger annoyance advantage for alternative on the Keyboard, replacing the Newsstand app with a new News App, Notes alms added adapter options, abutment for alteration admonition in Maps, assorted multitasking features, a added proactive Siri, 3D Touch affiliation (Peek and Pop, Quick options), and aswell a cogent advance on the array life.

A newer anatomy of App development was aswell alien with the accession of Swift 2, the almsman to Swift programming language. Apple’s Swift accent is a cogent advancement to application objective-C and aswell makes iOS programming easier because of its abridged syntax and alternate nature. Swift 2 offers an even faster compiler, new fix-it suggestions and mark-down syntax to accomplish the accent easier to learn.

In today’s tech apprenticed world, apps accept somewhat taken over the apple and become an important aspect for anybody today. If you ambition to become an iOS programmer and apprentice how to accomplish iOS apps, there are abounding altered online assets that are accessible that can advice you apprentice how to body iOS apps in no time. In this commodity below, I accept listed 6 altered assets that are not alone simple to awning in your active agenda but are aswell actual abridged friendly.

1. Apple Documentation

The best way to apprentice a new programming accent is to attending at the official affidavit provided by the company. Apple has appear all-encompassing affidavit committed to Swift and all of its features. You don’t even charge to actualize a Developer annual to admission the abstracts or even download Xcode from the Mac App.

The affidavit contains the history of Swift, how to alpha acquirements Swift and even includes sample codes and advertence abstracts to calmly advice you apprentice Swift. It is aswell the best way to abide adapted to the changes that are getting fabricated to the coding and even new appearance that are getting introduced.

2. AppCoda iOS Programming Course

AppCoda is a website that has committed itself to accouterment chargeless of amount iOS programming tutorials for anyone that wishes to learn. If that is not enough, they accept aswell appear a book on iOS Programming that break down the concepts for humans who adopt to plan with textual abstracts or wish added account resources. The website is awesomely organized and break down the tutorials amid Beginner, Average and added headings – acceptance you to aces up courses based on your accomplishment level.

3. O’Reilly – iOS 9 Programming Fundamentals with Swift

For anyone like me who prefers to acquisition aggregate they wish in one place, this is the absolute resource. Although it ability accomplish a little cavity in the bank, it is absolutely account the price. O’Reilly’s iOS9 Programming Fundamentals with Swift is the absolute book that covers aggregate you ability charge to apprentice not alone about Swift but aswell Xcode, and Cocoa Basics. It is actively the all in one ability that will consistently be accessible if you charge it.

4. Swift podcasts

If you are the blazon of getting who prefers to apprentice while doing, able-bodied again actuality is the ability of abounding altered developers at your fingertips. No best do you charge books and footfall by footfall tutorials, instead apprentice aggregate you charge to apperceive by alert to the abundant minds. There is no bar for experience, as both beginners and avant-garde users can account from this. If this accurate podcast doesn’t amuse your fancy, don’t anguish there are abounding altered podcasts on Swift and iOS programming languages that are artlessly a Google seek away.

5. HACKING WITH SWIFT – Chargeless Tutorials

Hacking with Swift is a website abounding of affluent tutorials that can calmly bolt you up with Swift if you accept just absitively to block on to the bandwagon. The website is authored by Paul Hudson, who has created abounding acknowledged apps for big names such as Fender, Virgin, Jamie Oliver, Odeon, Tesco, etc. The website gives the user the abandon to alpha wherever they are comfortable, authoritative it easier for even avant-garde users to get on board. In accession to some theory, the tutorials are torn down into 30 projects in Akin 1: 10 app projects, 10 bold projects, and 10 address projects. Hudson is aswell continuously abacus added projects, so you can accumulate on acquirements and growing.


RAYWENDERLICH is a association of developers that aim to advice anniversary added abound by creating tutorials for beginning developers. Their cold is to yield the a lot of arduous capacity and abridge them for anybody to learn. However, this ability be a little big-ticket as a PDF adaptation of their iOS9 tutorials costs about US$54. That getting said, the tutorials awning aggregate you ability charge to apprentice iOS9. They accept altered books depending on if you are a abecedarian or intermediate.