Monthly Archives: February 2009

A spin off application – I wonder how many of these there are out there

So, in looking at our booty call application, we realized we were only addressing a nice of the novelty dialing market, so we started to brainstorm.  We could have made several derivative applications, but we settled on just one – the drunk dialer (or iDrunk Dialer) as it will be named.

Again, what’s a post without some screen shots:

Kudos to Craiggers the Beard for knocking out some more killer graphics.

What I found, though, was that if you don’t originally architect your code to be modular in a certain way, it becomes really difficult to unravel the knot.  I was left with a choice between two evils…

1.  Risk the integrity of Booty Caller but maintain one code base.

2.  Make a side by side branch of the code and replace elements of Booty Caller

I chose 2.  However, this presents a bit of a difficult task moving forward, as I am going to have to be diciplined about making bug fixes in both applications.

That said, copying an XCode Project is not a simple task.  A couple of things that caught me…

1.  Of course, you need to go into the iPhone development portal and get some new provisioning profiles.  This will be obvious the first time you try to put this on your device.

2.  If you change from release build to debug (or vice versa) you’ll need to change the application target name in your target settings.  I chased this one for a little while

3.  Be sure to update the executable name, otherwise your old app name will show up once the application is downloaded to the simulator.

Really, this is an experiment… how much can I get out of a single code base.  When I am developing apps in the future, should I be considering several “skins”?  How will Apple react?  Will one outsell the other, or is there a base level of sales that “all” applications can expect.

I’ll keep you posted.

P.J. the Pony

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The beginning of the beginning… Booty Caller is born

So, we here at Bearded Pony software have submitted our first iPhone application to the store.  It’s called “Booty Caller” and we are pretty pumped about it.  Here are a couple of screen shots to get your juices flowin’

I am an engineer by trade, and overall, I have been extremely pleased with the development experience and the APIs that have been developed by Apple.  I can appreciate that not every component has an API – it’s better to give developers a robust API for 50% of the peripherals than a half-baked API for all of the peripherals.  Based on our (albeit limited) experience, there are a couple of tips that I can already give to the budding iPhone application developer.

1.  Tab bar icons – these are a little tricky if you don’t know what you’re doing.  Make sure that they are grayscale png files with transparent backgrounds.  The recommended size is 30 x 30.  If you don’t make them transparent, they won’t show up.

2.  Certificates and provisions – this has been by far the weirdest part of the development process.  It seems like a lot of mindless clicking that could easily be automated.  The best advice that I can give here is that if you ever come across a code sign error, just cut your losses and start over by deleting everything from your keychain and generating all new keys.  It’s not worth it to troubleshoot, and the forums and apple support can’t really help.  It’s shady, but honestly, I lost a week messing around with them and I could have been up and going in 1/2 hour.

3.  I stumbled upon some weird errors when returning control to the application from some of the supplied view controllers from apple (for example, the PeoplePickerNavigationController or the ImagePickerViewController).  Sometimes, the properties of my IBObjects (like font size, hidden, etc) would go back to default settings for no discernable reason.  So here, I recommend that you take nothing for granted and set all of your object properties again when returning from the controller… just to be safe.

4.  Videos are the best way for me to learn.  This is simply becasue it forces me to actually follow along and type the code instead of copying and pasting.  Not the most efficient ,but the best for learning.  Here are a couple of the best resources I found:

http://iphonedevcentral.org/ – these kids put together some really useful infomation for beginners and intermediates alike

http://icodeblog.com/ – totally awesome step by step tutorials – these were great for learning about Tables and Contacts especially

http://daringfireball.net/misc/2007/07/iphone-osx-fonts – a useful list of fonts on the iPhone

More to come,

P.J. the Pony