• Behind The Code: Luke (@qwertyoruiop)

    As I mentioned in my introduction post, I'm looking to bring a unique form of news and format that adds a more personable touch. The reason why we are all here is because we love iDevice products, news, and discussions. But what makes a venture like this more exciting is to bring in developers, product designers, and others from this field to talk a little about themselves and what they do. This bridges the gap between the user and developer/designer and adds a more relational aspect to the table. With that, I'm starting a new "series" called Behind The Code.

    Behind The Code will cover prominent developers/designers from all different realms of the Apple world and will consist of personal questions and questions about their work. There's nothing better than to know a little bit more about the person or people that designed your favorite tweak, app, theme, whatever.

    I'd like to kick of this pilot episode with a good friend of mine, qwertyoruiop (@qwertyoruiop). To be honest, I knew very little about him until recently. As a matter of fact, I didn't even know his real name until a few days ago (Luke).

    One of his new developments, which is an interest of mine and I'm sure soon will be many of yours, is his project OpenStar. OpenStar is a breakthrough application that allows Mac applications to be tweaked (e.g. add a nowplaying button to Twitter for Mac). It's a really neat venture and has a lot of potential.

    Now on with the show!

    JOSH:: First off, I'd like to start by thanking you for being so willing to be interviewed. I know that I'll really appreciate your insight and I'm sure the readers will too. So, I've heard rumors that no one (with the exception of a few people) know your name. Can you tell us your name and a little about yourself? How old are you and are you currently in school?
    LUKE: Some people know my name. I keep it a secret because people ask for it a lot :P. Anyway, my name is Luke. I'm a 14-years-old and an iOS developer. I've worked on multiple projects, for example, I made a lot of iBoot hacks for @DarkMalloc's OpenPwn project (good times :P). Also, I've worked with FilippoBiga a lot of times (FreeSync is also mine!) and I made several tweaks like PhotoMail. I'm currently at school and I'm going to have to take some exams soon unfortunately. I'm not afraid of them, because I'm a good student (but don't ask my teachers :P).

    JOSH: To be honest, I know little about the work you have done in the past and in the present. Tell us some of the work you've done (apps, tweaks, themes etc.).
    LUKE: I made some apps for the AppStore but they were rejected . I gave up and I started hacking iOS. I was an iBoot reverser / coder but I decided to start exploring the userland OS after a while. It's quite funny to see that you can control the flow of an application that has been made by different people. The key point is being smart, because you need to find the shortest logical way to accomplish an idea. If you're not really logical, it'll be really hard for you to code iOS tweaks.

    JOSH: What first got you into coding for Mac OSX and iOS devices? Do you have experience in coding in many other languages? How'd you learn how to code (self taught, class?)?
    LUKE: I started coding when I was 9 years old. I was scripting in JavaScript and it was kind of weird. I decided to explore server-side coding. I learned PHP. After a while my PC broke, so I took an old iBook. It was epic. I discovered Terminal.app and after few months I learnt BASH. I'm really good at BASH . Around this time, I bought an iPhone 3G. I started analyzing the Pwnage2 exploit without success, but I worked really hard in that kind of stuff. After a year I bootstrapped my own iBSS patch . I was really happy. I also joined the OpenPwn project. During this period I researched for a 4.0 jailbreak on iPod Touch 2G "MC" model. I was able to do that via the 0x21 exploit. I sent a 3.1.2 iBSS, pwned it, loaded a 4.0 hacked iBEC and booted a kernelcache. It worked .
    It was known as snowst0rm, a bunch of shell scripts that, via iRecovery, bspatch and other things, were able to jailbreak an iPod Touch 2G MC. The method is similar to @iH8sn0w's iBooty. After few months I explored userland, made some Cydia tweaks, made Openstar/Starloader, and here we are .

    JOSH: With the release of OpenStar, Mac OSX now has the capability to have tweaks to programs. Who or what gave you the idea to create OpenStar?
    LUKE: I started StarFramework myself. Nobody gave me any idea. When I realized that it worked, I released a fork of it called OpenStar. OpenStar is much different than StarFramework ("SF"). SF wasn't able to hook ObjC functions, OpenStar ("OS") can actually hook only ObjC functions. SF's C hooking platform is pretty cool because it allows %hook-style C interposition. It's private, and I won't release it. StarLoader was an OS's module, but now it is an ObjC hooking platform itself.

    JOSH: TweetPwn is the first tweak you released for Twitter for Mac (#nowplaying tweak inspired by Filippo Bigarella (@filippobiga)). Do you have any other tweaks coming out soon or in the process of being developed?
    LUKE: I don't have any new idea for MacOSX tweaks at this current time .

    JOSH: If there was anyone in the coding community that you could say was an inspiration or a good "mentor" for you to continue coding and releasing work, who would that be and why?
    LUKE: Honestly, @DarkMalloc was my "mentor". He's great .

    JOSH: What gave you the idea to take the top letter line of a keyboard and make it your name (qwertyoruiop)? And why did you skip letters instead of going "tyuiop"?
    LUKE: I was commenting to a blog that asked me for a nickname. I'm not really creative, so I opted for qwerty. I changed it to qwerty or uiop? Few hours later, I hated my nickname. Honestly .

    JOSH: And now for an off-topic question: What is your favorite animal and why?
    LUKE: Cat because everyday is caturday . I love my cat <3.

    If you're interested in checking out Luke's new project, check out the following links below:


    If you'd like to give TweetPwn (the first Mac OSX tweak; adds nowplaying button to Twitter for Mac) a shot, download the following package and install both programs:

    StarLoader Pack

    Follow Luke (@qwertyoruiop) on Twitter for future updates on his work and OpenStar. And you know where to find me.

    Source(s): @qwertyoruiop, iDevProject
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