Portrait of two boys
Matthew (left) and me (right), October 1987.

I don’t usually make personal posts1, but today is an exception.

In February I lost my younger brother, Matthew, very suddenly and unexpectedly.

My energy has of course has gone into the family situation, and this has meant I have not devoted time to my business here, fixing bugs, updating extensions, and answering queries. So I would like to apologise to customers who have been waiting for fixes or responses and not got them yet, and I thank you for your patience.

Further, in recent weeks I have had chance to reflect on life, purpose, responsibility, legacy… and also the intersection of these things with the reality of being an independent software developer.

As you may or not know, I work alone, without any business partners or employees. This is the way I have chosen it — a business with a responsibility for others’ livelihoods is a very different proposition to something you can do on your own. Of course, this means that one day, I won’t be here either and you will all might be left with an app that doesn’t update any more.2

That said, I don’t expect to disappear any time soon. I get a lot of pleasure from keeping these creations of mine on the road through the ever changing environment of OS updates, app store rule changes, the ever changing world of 3rd party apps to remain compatible with, and everything else that comes along to throw a little challenge on the way.

I guess the point of this post is just to say — hi this is me. I’m just a human being. I enjoy coming up with ideas and turning them into software that does a thing in a neat, quiet way. I like getting your support emails with your ideas and hearing how the stuff I made is useful to you. I am frequently overwhelmed with the amount of things that need to be fixed, or could be improved.

It’s a constant battle to not get bogged down and disheartened in the inbox and the ever-growing todo list of maintenance tasks, and to instead actually carve out undistracted time to really build things.3

This is my only job; my sole (modest) living comes from people like you buying my apps. As a process it’s messy, it’s imprecise and I really can never make any promises. But I will keep on trying to figure it all out. Thank you.

  1. Indeed for the first 10 years of running this business I didn’t make posts at all, having only started this blog at the end of 2019. 

  2. Perhaps I will put in place something between now and then to allow my creations to continue beyond me. What form that might take, is for another day. 

  3. One of the reasons for this new blog, and other planned improvements to the website, is to communicate better with you the customers what’s going on with my apps, and what you should do when you encounter something that doesn’t work. That’s still very much a work in progress.