Apps

A First Look at Apple’s Swift Programming Language

Posted In Working in Tech
Screen Shot 2014-06-03 at 8.57.52 AM
As expected, Apple executives spent the first day of the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) unveiling iOS 8 and Mac OS X “Yosemite,” the newest versions of operating systems for iOS mobile devices and Macs. But the announcement that earned arguably the biggest response from the audience (and the tech media at large) came near the end, and it involved something that 99 percent of consumers probably won’t care about: a new programming language, Swift. For many years, Apple-centric developers… continue…

Twitch, Slingshot Suggest Big Companies’ Future Is Small Apps

Posted In Looking in Tech
Twitch
Facebook may have missed out on buying Snapchat, but that hasn’t cooled the company’s ardor for disappearing-messages apps—or the audiences that come with them: The Financial Times reports that Facebook’s engineers are hard at work on an “ephemeral messaging” platform that would vaporize videos and photos after a single view. Facebook recently discontinued Poke, its two-year-old app that replicated much of Snapchat’s functionality, after it failed to gain much of an audience. This new attempt, reportedly named “Slingshot,” will likely… continue…

7 Mobile App Markets You Haven’t Thought Of

Construction worker with tablet
Even traditionally low-tech industries are embracing mobile applications. As Todd Brown, senior applications development manager at UPS, puts it: “any industry with a workforce that doesn’t sit at a desk.” That’s creating opportunities for app developers. But as with any product, deep knowledge of the business and its workflow processes is vital to making your app succeed. Click here to find mobile development jobs. Think beyond the confines of consumer or traditional enterprise development for some new opportunities. Here’s a… continue…

Is Mobile Game Development Worth the Effort?

Flappy Bird
The developers who got into iOS a few months after the App Store was launched had it a lot easier than their brethren today. A few months after the store opened, there were just 10,000 apps available. Today, that many are launched in two weeks. That means more than 1,000 new apps appear each day. That’s a phenomenal figure – and not what anyone with a low marketing budget wants to hear. Another challenge: Roughly one in five players who… continue…

Want to Upgrade Your App? Consider Breaking It Apart

Swarm by Fourquare Logo
Facebook, Foursquare and other tech companies are taking an odd approach to upgrading their core apps. Instead of adding new features or shinier buttons, these firms are breaking their apps apart. Foursquare split off many of its main app’s social functions into Swarm, which focuses on friends and check-ins; the new, leaner Foursquare app will allow users to search for nearby restaurants and other points of interest. Facebook seems determined to parse its “main” mobile app into as many standalone… continue…

The Basics of Google’s Turn-Based Gaming

Google Play
Early this year, Google announced support for turn-based multiplayer games. In general, turn-based gaming isn’t new, though it is a newcomer to Google Play Services. Now, developers can use Google servers to manage game data. And as of now, there’s no additional cost associated with these features. What is Turn-Based Multiplayer Gaming? As their name indicates, turn-based games allow multiple players to take turns that can be played asynchronously. Google’s turn-based API allows players to invite others to play or… continue…

Developers: IBM’s App-Building Garage Awaits

Posted In Looking in Tech
BlueMix
IBM plans on opening its first collaborative “BlueMix Garage” in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood, where it will sit within Galvanize, a “campus” where startups can share space, participate in events and workshops, and network with one another. On paper, the potential benefits of IBM’s arrangement seem obvious: By plugging into one of the hottest startup scenes in the country, and offering a series of classes and mentoring, Big Blue can spark interest in developing for its nascent cloud… continue…

Cortana, Google Now, Siri Will Change How You Build Apps

Cortana
This week, Microsoft finally unveiled Cortana, its long-rumored digital assistant that will roll out with Windows Phone 8.1. Like Apple’s Siri and Google Now, Cortana can interpret and act upon voice commands; it also keeps a “notebook” loaded with the user’s personal information, the better to serve up useful data about nearby restaurants, latest sports scores, and more. Other features include event-specific reminders (for example, you can ask your Windows Phone to prod you to bring up a particular topic… continue…

Why App Developers Face Such Long Odds

shutterstock_70728256
Why did the app developer move back home with his mom? Sure, that sounds like the setup for a joke—but for many developers, it’s also reality: despite the much-publicized stories of app-builders and startup founders making millions (or even billions) off the software they’ve built, the substantial majority earn only just enough to get by, according to a new column in the Harvard Business Review. Click here for app development jobs. “Encouraging kids to blow off schoolwork to write apps,… continue…

Why User Experience Designers Are More Valued Than Ever

Posted In UI/UX, Working in Tech
Screen Shot 2014-04-01 at 1.34.18 PM
IBM will pump $100 million into consulting services designed to help improve clients’ user experience design (UX). As part of that initiative, Big Blue will open 10 “Interactive Experience” labs at locations around the world, including London, Melbourne, Mexico City, New York, Shanghai, and Tokyo. “There’s no longer any real distinction between business strategy and the design of the user experience,” Bridget van Kralingen, senior vice president of IBM Global Business Services, wrote in a statement. “The last best experience… continue…