A humble suggestion for the sandboxing problem

If you follow Apple news, you are probably aware of the coming requirement for apps in the Mac App Store to implement sandboxing. The short version of the story is that Apple is going to require apps to operate in a sandbox (as they do on iOS) which keeps applications from messing with other parts of your system. This is a good security measure, but could potentially cripple certain apps which rely on the ability to (responsibly) mess with other parts of your system in order to do their job.

I’m not a programmer, but it seems like sandboxing is a good default for an application to start with unless there’s a legitimate reason for it not to be sandboxed. I wonder though, if there aren’t solutions for maintaining the functionality of an app despite it being sandboxed. Several apps pull tricks on iOS to get around the restrictions.

Take Pastebot for example, it uses the copy/paste function to capture everything that goes to your iOS clipboard for a certain amount of time after having the app open. It also has a companion app that runs in the background of your Mac which allows copy/paste functionality between the Mac and your phone.

I wonder if similar background apps could extend the functionally of a sandboxed app. So you could put your app in the App Store and have users install a little background app from your website that would talk to your app and restore the functionality you have to remove in order to meet Apple’s guidelines.

Again, I’m not a programmer and I don’t know how practical this would be.

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