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Have Apple's Sandboxing Requirements Stifled App Development?

Personal moves taken by one developer who had previously targeted Apple's App Store for his OS X compatible application could point to wider incompatibilities between the tech giant and the programmer community.

Author of the Vico text editor Martin Hedenfalk says that he has moved his previously proprietary, closed-source App Store project to open source under a "BSD-like" license, as he can no longer spend as much time on development as he would like.

NOTE: Vico itself is a "modal" vi-keystroke-compatible editor: This means there are different modes in which you interact with the editor…the most fundamental modes are the insert mode and normal mode. According to Vico's help pages, "Regular keys pressed while in insert mode causes text to be inserted. In contrast, while in normal mode, regular keys are attached to editing commands such as delete, change, or copy text."

"I'm releasing the source code on GitHub and encourage the community to contribute and help build a truly kick-ass editor," wrote Hedenfalk on his blog. "Vico will be removed from the App Store. Being there in the first place has been problematic, and the sandboxing requirement makes it finally incompatible. A new build is available on the download page without any trial restrictions."

Reports at the end of last year suggested that Apple's incoming sandboxing requirements for App Store apps will require support for Apple's own sandboxing routines.

Apple itself stated in November of last year the following, "The vast majority of Mac users have been free from malware and we're working on technologies to help keep it that way. As of March 1, 2012 all apps submitted to the Mac App Store must implement sandboxing. Sandboxing your app is a great way to protect systems and users by limiting the resources apps can access and making it more difficult for malicious software to compromise users' systems."

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