Posted on Nov 17, 2022

I’m an engineer living in Sunnyvale, California, in the USA, with my wonderful wife Emily Thomforde. I grew up in Scotland.

I like to consider myself a generalist, but I seem to have specialized in Apple software platforms in my career. I enjoy hobby electronics.

At the turn of the century I was educated in Computer Science at the University of Edinburgh. I have fond memories of it.

I worked at Apple in Cupertino from 2001 to 2008, starting in Mac OS X (now macOS) integration testing, and ending in engineering on iChat (now Messages) on Mac. AIM RIP.

In 2009, back in Scotland, I made the Eucalyptus ebook reading app for iPhone. The launch was nervewracking. It had a beautiful physical page turning mechanism, and a publisher-quality paragraph layout algorithm. They wrote about it in the New Yorker!

A few individual book apps published by Pan Macmillan were produced using code from Eucalyptus, including an early Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy app (the first app for a book series, I believe), which was pretty exciting!

Latterly, Eucalyptus evolved into libEucalyptus - an ePub 2 rendering and interaction framework. For a few years, it was used in Baker and Taylor’s Blio app (a defunct competitor to Kindle, Apple Books, Kobo etc.). I’m still pretty proud of it.

[I wish the market was such that a stand-alone DRM-free ePub reader could be profitable. Alas…]

In 2013, Emily and I made two games, Coolson’s Artisinal Chocolate Alphabet for iPad, and Coolson’s Pocket Pack for iPhone. Coolson’s Artisinal Chocolate Alphabet won the 2013 Scottish BAFTA award for Best Game! We got to go to a ceremony and were give a little statue. We met David Tennant, and attended a party DJed by Kirsty Wark. Apparently I failed to blog about it at the time‽

We moved back to California in 2014 and I joined Apple’s UIKit engineering team.

From 2015 to 2022, I was engineering manager for the UIKit Infrastructure team. I had a great time. We made some amazing stuff together.

At the moment I’m happily, perhaps prematurely, and probably temporarily retired, which is why I have time to write this.

Should I have written this starting with the newest things?

My name’s James Montgomerie, but you can call me Jamie.

You can find me as @th_in_gs@sfba.social on Mastodon, perhaps still as @th_in_gs on Twitter, and email me at jamie@montgomerie.net.