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5 Key Takeaways for iOS Developers from WWDC20

3 minutes, 21 seconds read

Apple WWDC20 brings together the global Apple developer community of more than 23 million in a phenomenal and virtual way. Kicking off the 31st edition of their flagship WWDC conference as the biggest WWDC to date; Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO said “Today we’re announcing our transition to Apple silicon, making this a historic day for the Mac” 

Last year, at the WWDC event, Apple announced some fine machine learning and artificial intelligence updates and demonstrated how the developers can benefit from the customization. This year, on Day 1 of WWDC 2020, Apple made some landmark announcements unveiling a smorgasbord of updates for the iOS Developers community. 

5 key takeaways from WWDC 2020 for iOS Developers

1. New Depth API in ARKit 4

ARKit 4 introduces new ways to capture information about the real world using a new Depth API. This API is designed to work with the LiDAR sensor in iPad Pro. It enables entirely new types of apps, such as on-site architecture, design, landscaping, and manufacturing. 

2. Simplified Core ML

Machine learning development in Core ML is now easier and more extensive. With the introduction of additional tools for model deployment and encryption, new templates in Create ML, and more APIs for vision and natural language, Core ML is capable of fine-tuning models and making predictions on user’s devices. 

Core Machine learning forms the fundamental building block of any domain-specific framework and functionality. With Create ML and API’s for vision and NLP, one can build models for sound activity and object detection; and transfer learning for text classifications.

With over 100 model layers now supported with Core ML, the ML, it is believed that models can be built that deliver experiences that deeply understand the vision, NLP and speech like never before.

Also read: Speech is the next UX

3. Extended Touch Gesture Control in PencilKit

PencilKit now features Scribble, which makes it easy to create apps with text entry fields that users can write in with Apple Pencil, handwriting for any UITextField. Developers will also have access to stroke data using PencilKit as stroke API gives access to the strokes as the user draws. It seamlessly handles both Apple Pencil input and system touch gestures.

Also read: How does AI recognise your hand gestures and movements?

4. Extensions in SwiftUI

Apple added no breaking changes to SwiftUi but just extensions. Swift Package Manager adds support for resources to easily share Asset Catalog bundles and localizations. 

New open-source packages have been introduced for Numerics, ArgumentParser, and System making Swift a great language for more use cases. SwiftUI now contains app-structure APIs for all Apple platforms, e.g. @main, @SceneBuilder, Settings etc. Now developers can write an entire app in Swift UI using the life cycle API and share it across all Apple platforms. 

5. Wider Scope of Testing in TestFlight 

TestFlight has been helping developers in testing beta versions of their apps. In the WWDC 2020 announcement, it will now support up to 100 team members for fast build distribution. Moreover, iOS Developers can Invite up to 10,000 external testers through email address or by sharing a public link.

Wrapping-up

During the WWDC 2020, many new APIs were announced that can enable iOS Developers to create amazing app-experiences. It also includes the AirPods Motion API that gives developers access to movement data in real-time. Also, Developers can now enable users to upgrade existing third-party app accounts to Sign in with Apple accounts.

Apart from Apple’s updates and releases, it is also creating an additional channel for developers to share feedback on developer’s forums. Developers are encouraged to share their feedback on the forum so that the team at Apple continues to update on the fixes and enhance the App Store experience for the entire developer’s community. 

Check out – 1-on-1 Developer Labs

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Implementing a Clean Architecture with Nest.JS

4 minutes read

This article is for enthusiasts who strive to write clean, scalable, and more importantly refactorable code. It will give an idea about how Nest.JS can help us write clean code and what underlying architecture it uses.

Implementing a clean architecture with Nest.JS will require us to first comprehend what this framework is and how it works.

What is Nest.JS?

Nest or Nest.JS is a framework for building efficient, scalable Node.js applications (server-side) built with TypeScript. It uses Express or Fastify and allows a level of abstraction to enable developers to use an ample amount of modules (third-party) within their code.

Let’s dig deeper into what is this clean architecture all about. 

Well, you all might have used or at least heard of MVC architecture. MVC stands for Model, View, Controller. The idea behind this is to separate our project structure into 3 different sections.

1. Model: It will contain the Object file which maps with Relation/Documents in the DB.

2. Controller: It is the request handler and is responsible for the business logic implementation and all the data manipulation.

3. View: This part will contain files that are concerned with the displaying of the data, either HTML files or some templating engine files.

To create a model, we need some kind of ORM/ODM tool/module/library to build it with. For instance, if you directly use the module, let’s say ‘sequelize’, and then use the same to implement login in your controller and make your core business logic dependent upon the ‘sequelize’. Now, down the line, let’s say after 10 years, there is a better tool in the market that you want to use, but as soon as you replace sequelize with it, you will have to change lots of lines of code to prevent it from breaking. Also, you’ll have to test all the features once again to check if it’s deployed successfully or not which may waste valuable time and resource as well. To overcome this challenge, we can use the last principle of SOLID which is the Dependency Inversion Principle, and a technique called dependency injection to avoid such a mess.

Still confused? Let me explain in detail.

So, what Dependency Inversion Principle says in simple words is, you create your core business logic and then build dependency around it. In other words, free your core logic and business rules from any kind of dependency and modify the outer layers in such a way that they are dependent on your core logic instead of your logic dependent on this. That’s what clean architecture is. It takes out the dependency from your core business logic and builds the system around it in such a way that they seem to be dependent on it rather than it being dependent on them.

Let’s try to understand this with the below diagram.

Source: Clean Architecture Cone 

You can see that we have divided our architecture into 4 layers:

1. Entities: At its core, entities are the models(Enterprise rules) that define your enterprise rules and tell what the application is about. This layer will hardly change over time and is usually abstract and not accessible directly. For eg., every application has a ‘user’. What all fields the user should store, their types, and relations with other entities will comprise an Entity.

2. Use cases: It tells us how can we implement the enterprise rules. Let’s take the example of the user again. Now we know what data to be operated upon, the use case tells us how to operate upon this data, like the user will have a password that needs to be encrypted, the user needs to be created, and the password can be changed at any given point of time, etc.

3. Controllers/Gateways: These are channels that help us to implement the use cases using external tools and libraries using dependency injection.

4. External Tools: All the tools and libraries we use to build our logic will come under this layer eg. ORM, Emailer, Encryption, etc.

The tools we use will be depending upon how we channel them to use cases and in turn, use cases will depend upon the entities which is the core of our business. This way we have inverted the dependency from outwards to inwards. That’s what the Dependency Inversion Principal of SOLID implies.

Okay, by now, you got the gist of Nest.JS and understood how clean architecture works. Now the question arises, how these two are related?  

Let’s try to understand what are the 3 building blocks of Nest.JS and what each of them does.

  1. Modules: Nest.JS is structured in such a way that we can treat each feature as a module. For eg., anything which is linked with the User such as models, controllers, DTOs, interfaces, etc., can be separated as a module. A module has a controller and a bunch of providers which are injectible functionalities like services, orm, emailer, etc.
  1. Controllers: Controllers in Nest.JS are interfaces between the network and your logic. They are used to handle requests and return responses to the client side of the application (for example, call to the API).
  1. Providers (Services): Providers are injectable services/functionalities which we can inject into controllers and other providers to provide flexibility and extra functionality. They abstract any form of complexity and logic.

To summarize,

  • We have controllers that act as interfaces (3rd layer of clean architecture)
  • We have providers which can be injected to provide functionality (4th layer of clean architecture: DB, Devices, etc.)
  • We can also create services and repositories to define our use case (2nd Layer)
  • We can define our entities using DB providers (1st Layer)

Conclusion:

Nest.JS is a powerful Node.JS framework and the most well-known typescript available today. Now that you’ve got the lowdown on this framework, you must be wondering if we can use it to build a project structure with a clean architecture. Well, the answer is -Yes! Absolutely. How? I’ll explain in the next series of this article. 

Till then, Stay tuned!

About the Author:

Junaid Bhat is currently working as a Tech Lead in Mantra Labs. He is a tech enthusiast striving to become a better engineer every day by following industry standards and aligned towards a more structured approach to problem-solving. 


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