Serious Business

Posted on January 12, 2016

In October 2015, Pieter Omvlee of Bohemian Coding gave a great talk at the inaugural Release Notes entitled The Great Pretender: Pretend to be More Than an Indie. In his presentation, Pieter talked in part about his experience selling a professional app to professional users. One of the things he suggested is that indies should consider pretending to be a bigger company than they really are in order to instill confidence in the mind of the ...

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The Prisoner’s Dilemma

Posted on November 13, 2015

Anyone who's even a little familiar with game theory is undoubtedly familiar with The Prisoner's Dilemma. It's a classic thought experiment that illustrates how people can make rational choices that seem to be in their own best interest, even when another choice would result in a better outcome for themselves and for the group. In the classic formulation of the Prisoner's Dilemma, the prisoner in question is faced with a choice. The prisoner ...

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Premium Pricing and Back Seat Driving

Posted on October 27, 2015

A friend of mine, Curtis Herbert, has been writing a series of articles (1, 2, 3) he calls Slopes Diaries about the development and pricing of version 2 of his app Slopes. Although I've found Slopes Diaries to be interesting, and while I agree with a lot of what he's written, a few things that he wrote in his most recent installment of the series struck me as wrong. Curtis begins Slopes Diaries #3 by quoting himself from Slopes Diaries #1, ...

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My Delivery Truck (2nd Delivery Attempt)

Posted on July 9, 2015

Since posting My Delivery Truck, I've gotten a lot of responses, both on Twitter and (in the best tradition of blogging) reply posts. Although many were supportive of my post, some developers took me to task. A lot of the same objections were raised repeatedly, so I'm going to concentrate on a blog post from Aleksandar Vacić titled Store your Love which nicely summarizes many of the objections that were raised. Aleksandar writes: ...

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My Delivery Truck

Posted on July 2, 2015

As tends to happen in regular cycles in our community, there has recently been another bout of handwringing over the difficulty of making it as an indie. Brent Simmons kicked this one off in his well written piece titled Love. And I don't mean to make light of his piece. If you haven't done so, I encourage you to read it. It encapsulates well a lot of the emotional angst that many independent developers are feeling about their businesses right ...

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Taylor Swift and App Development

Posted on June 21, 2015

If you had asked me yesterday which Swift would be the topic of conversation among iOS and Mac developers today, I would have put money on it being the programming language and not the music star. And I would have been wrong, because Taylor Swift set the world of Apple watchers abuzz today by airing complaints about Apple's new Apple Music service on her blog. In her post she lays out a well-reasoned argument that Apple Music's payment policy is ...

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The Indie Hustle

Posted on June 4, 2015

I was reminded recently of episode #216: The Hustle of David Smith's excellent Developing Perspective podcast. "Reminded" isn't really the right word, though. It's more that it's stuck with me since I originally listened to it in April. In that episode, David talks (among other things) about the importance of hustle for an indie developer. And he's right. Hustle is an essential part of indie life. As an indie, you have to always be on the ...

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The App Store and Form 1099-K

Posted on March 28, 2015

If you're a U.S. taxpayer with apps on the iOS or Mac App Store, you may have received from Apple a Form 1099-K, Payment Card and Third Party Network Transactions, which reports to the IRS your gross revenue from App Store sales. You may have also noticed that the amount reported on your Form 1099-K doesn't bear much resemblance to the payments actually received from Apple. There are a couple different reasons the amount Apple reported might ...

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