In the “bugs that drive me crazy” category are two that I’ve recently discovered when I upgraded to the new iPhone 4. Both look like examples of programmers writing software from the comfort of their cushy high-speed internet connections and not testing in the real world. Both involve disappearing data – unbelievably frustrating.

First, the Word Press for iPhone app has a nasty one that makes it so that after I save a post I’m working on as “local draft” and go to publish it, the publish step fails & my post disappears from the phone.

More on the iOS Word Press forums here.

Second, there’s a really terrible problem with writing notes on the iPhone and syncing them to Gmail. First of all, this bug just started appearing recently after my upgrade to iOS 4. Second, syncing notes to Gmail isn’t really syncing at all- you’re really looking at the notes from the server. (You can turn this off an just work on local notes, which might be what I have to do.) The problem happens when I write a note, save it, then go back and edit it. My edits disappear… gone, zapped, goodbye. The note just reverts back to the first version.

I *suspect* this has something to do with my internet connection. I was writing the note on an unstable internet connection and what I think is happening is that when you go to “save” the Notes app tries to save it to the Gmail server. Not being able to actually reach the Gmail server, it just fails with no warning, and your revision is lost. So it’s not really syncing at all, it is just assume that internet connections are always stable and failing when it is not. Posted to macrumors forum here

I think these are both examples of programmers who work from high-speed connections and don’t think about how users use their devices in the real world. Despite all the promises, there’s lots of places where there is a bad connection. In the NYC subway, for example, a crowded bar, or out in the country. This really should be planned for. I fear that this stems from a “perfection” culture created around Apple in which the reality distortion field makes programmers forget about things like, well, bad internet connections for the rest of us.

By Jason

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