Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Designing the App

Well today I started designing the the Game Score App.  Until I can finalize on an App name, I will just refer to the project as GSA for short.  My method for creating the initial app usually involves my white board and writing down all the functions that the App should perform.  I also try to answer a few questions that can affect the design.    I usually go through a few versions of the white board scribblings.  I take a picture of the previous thoughts before erasing it and starting on another thread of thought.  This allows me to keep the picture as 'notes' that I can transcribe to my electronic notebook or to directly to code.  For example:

What is basic functionality and what is optional?  Should the product us the latest iOS features and goodies?  (Yes, Please!)  Should the product support earlier versions of iOS?   How often does the normal world upgrade the operating system on their devices?  These are some of the decisions I have to nail down this week along with a formal schedule of deliveries.  The schedule will allow Rebecca and I to see how well I am progressing on the project.

- Geek Side Note - For the previous week, I have been tinkering with the latest iOS Game building API, called Sprite Kit.  It allows you to build a game using scenes using a gathering of Nodes or building blocks strung together to perform animation, sound, and other neat effects.  Our next version of Letter Rain will be using this framework and I am considering it also for this project.  This would allow me to build screens to represent the data (players, scores, games) in different interesting ways.  TBD.

I have started a project in Xcode, the development environment used in building iOS Apps.  I also started a note/design section in my electronic notebook.  FYI, I have been using Circus Ponies excellent  Notebook software for a few years now and still find it very useful for organizing my thoughts or just capturing relevant data.

- Geek Side Note 2 - I noticed that "Words with Friends" is still having slight problems with my iPad when rotated in iOS 7.  It is nice to know that a popular App with a full development team and budget can also run into problems in their product.  For selfish reasons, it is nice to know it can happen to every developer/team.

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