Copy-and-Paste is coming - sort of.


The 3G is my first iPhone.  So I've been honeymooning since early July.  But now I'm seeing larger issues.  One gripe (besides lousy connectivity,  now the subject of a class action lawsuit) is that apps don't interoperate.  To me, an app should be judged not just on its own, but by how it works with other apps.   But instead of an ecosystem, we have isolated islands.

For example, if I get a high score on Cube Runner, it should be easy to drop that score onto my Twitter or Facebook status, email it to friends, etc. Or if I snap a mobile pic for my Facebook feed, that pic should go into my iPhone photo album too. If you have a wishlist of your own, leave a comment.

BTW, I know I can save a screenshot and email it later from the iPhone Photo Album - but I don't consider that a real solution.

I'm not a developer, so I haven't read the iPhone SDK agreement for myself, but apparently Apple forbids plugins, which makes inter-app communications difficult. I guess Apple needs to conserve the iPhone's poor battery resources. (This is also why apps can't yet run in the background when "closed" - making AIM nearly useless.)

This leads me to Copy-and-Paste between apps. Apple doesn't allow it yet, but a workaround is coming. There's a new open source iPhone app framework called OpenClip which gets around the SDK limitations by using a shared "clipboard" space on the iPhone. OpenClip-enabled apps can access and write data to this shared space, voila, Copy-and-Paste! Hopefully, rather than shut this down, Apple will embrace it - even improve upon it.

I haven't seen OpenClip-enabled apps in action for myself, because they are coming soon, but here is a brief preview video:

Cut and Paste for iPhone from Cali Lewis on Vimeo.

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