Starting to code again :) on in app purchases :(

Although still very busy with the move from San Diego to Palo Alto I’m slowly but surely finding time here and there to code.

Edm Coding GIF by Monstercat

Right now, working on finishing the in app purchase view for Starlight. I know, I know… Not the most exciting part, but still necessary. Here’s the latest screenshot, fresh off the press:

Screenshot 2023 08 08 at 9 28 02 PM

As for subscriptions: once the user has reached the free tier limit I’m planning to offer either -most likely- yearly or both yearly and monthly. Price-wise, not sure, I’m trending towards yearly at 34.99 and monthly at 4.99…?

If all goes well (and that’s saying a lot) I’ll ship the next major update in September, delivering all planned 1.0 features, improvements and lots of bug fixes. 

In the meantime, you can already try Starlight https://getstarlight.app for free (bugs and all!)

Comments / feedback? Find me at mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi

Marc

Moving back to the Bay Area

Some personal news to share. My wife & I are relocating from San Diego back to the Bay Area.

california GIF

Although its a positive move, it was not planned, so I will post less frequently in the next couple of months as we’re getting all the move complexities solved. 

Schitts Creek Comedy GIF by CBC

And if you’re in the bay and want to connect, ping me @ mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi or @MarcMasVi

Marc

Starlight – Soft launch, week 1 update

Soft-launch of Starlight going great – thank you for all the positive feedback and improvement suggestions! 

StarlightIntro

The app will remain free until I add final touches based on feedback. If you ran into any issues please let me know via the “Contact us” option in the Help menu bar, and if you love the app – ratings appreciated! 

https://getstarlight.app

On another note, I’m in Barcelona for two weeks – one of them on vacation! If you’re a fellow macOS or iOS developer & want to go for some “canyas” (how locals call small glasses of beer), do reach out. 

Find me at mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi or @MarcMasVi

Marc

Starlight has gone gold!

After over a year in the making – I’m excited to announce another signficant milestone: Starlight has gone gold!

AppStoreImageBookmark

Its effectively ready to ship, what’s more, it’s also approved for sale by Apple — feels… pretty good

Feeling Season 9 GIF by Curb Your Enthusiasm

With the app gone gold, I’m now switching to getting ready to ship! Among other things, that includes working on:

   – Finalizing website

   – Preparing press kits

   – Preparing relevant posts

   – Contacting reviewers 

   – Setting launch date

On the website side, although for past apps I used RapidWeaver, I decided to go for something more focused & clear and decided to do it myself. Let me know what you think: https://getstarlight.app

Looking forward to share more with you shortly, comments / feedback? Find me at mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi or @MarcMasVi

Marc

PS. The website clean look is inspired by Marco’s Overcast – (Podcast app, 100% recommend)

Building GPT from scratch

With all the talk & articles about GPT, a few weeks ago I decided to spend a couple days coding one from scratch.

Baaaam

The training size can’t be the same (for $$$ reasons), but the model can follow a very similar architecture to the one used by GPT-3. As long as we narrow the training data, we can get amazing results – in my case I used US legal corpus data, which is widely available online. 

I found this experience very valuable to better understand how this new models can improve & be used in the future. If you want to follow along I do recommend reading the paper GPT is based upon, and also the great implementation from Andrej.

If you have interest in this area, and know the basics of AI / Python, def. recommend the experience. Personally, I think the impact to society will be very significant – although probably not in the obvious ways we’re imagining.

It’s amazing to think all of this is based on math, we’ve come a long way…

Giphy

Here’s the code I wrote for reference, I optimized it for M Macs to take advantage of their GPUs so it trains a lot faster. Note the faster your GPU the faster it will train, also time will depend on the amount of the training data. I used an M1 Max w. 32 GPU cores and 64 GB RAM, and it took me a about two hours to train. 

Comments / Feedback? Find me at mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi or @MarcMasVi

Happy coding, 

Marc

Leveraging Bing Chat as a development tool

Even though in their infancy, ChatGPT, Copilot & OPT are already impressive tools. The impact on how we work will be significant and, although expertise will still be critical, people who leverage AI will have an edge over people who don’t.

I started increasingly using Bing Chat (which uses GPT-4 behind the scenes) to parse Apple documentation and help finding solutions when stuck… And it’s been quite helpful.

I now treat Bing Chat, the same I would Stack Overflow or Web Search. Here’s an example on something it helped me on today:

Screenshot 2023 03 19 at 9 18 37 PM

Clearly not perfect, but it led me in the right direction & helped me identify what I needed:

             textView.enclosingScrollView?.findBarPosition = .belowContent

And voila!

Screenshot 2023 03 19 at 9 43 31 PM

Definitely recommend using it as part of your workflow. Btw Microsoft wants you to use Edge to use Bing Chat – but you can just enable Dev. Mode in Safari and set the “User Agent” to Edge. 

Interesting times we’re living in! Excited about the future. 

Comments / Feedback? Find me at mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi or @MarcMasVi

Marc

Leveraging SF Symbols from code

SF Symbols are hugely helpful to help accelerate the development process, Apple has done an amazing job at providing a huge variety of them – all looking great & working well with one another.

If you’re a developer and are not familiar with them, you’re missing out – go download them

One minor caveat to be aware of though is that you can’t just call the Unicode codepoints. As I learned today, these will not work unless you have the design fonts installed.

So, for instance this…

Screenshot 2023 02 26 at 10 52 44 AM

 

…will not render. Wops!! The right way to call it would be:

Screenshot 2023 02 26 at 11 05 26 AM

 

Alternatively, you could also use Label(“someText”, systemImage: “flag”) 

Screenshot 2023 02 26 at 11 15 58 AM

Happy coding! Comments / Feedback? Find me at mastodon.social/@MarcMasVi or @MarcMasVi

Marc

Microsoft aggressively capitalizing on their OpenAI investment

There’s a lot of chat right now about ChatGPT. And, although the technology may be a bit overhyped, some of the use-cases it enables have the potential to change the way we work:

 Here’s one, from the Verge: 

“Intelligent recap is the big new addition to Microsoft Teams Premium […]. Intelligent recap uses OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 model to generate meeting notes and highlights even if you weren’t present in a meeting.”

https://www.theverge.com/2023/2/2/23582610/microsoft-teams-premium-openai-gpt-features 

Interesting times, 

Marc

The Last of Us – HBO

I was not expecting much from “The Last of Us” from HBO, after so many poor adaptations of video-games, what could one look forward to? Well, I’m glad to say I was wrong. 

The first two episodes have been so fun to watch. If you enjoyed the game, do check them out. 

Faithful to the material too 🙂 Here’s hoping the rest of the season is as good as the first episodes. 

Marc