Tuesday, 17 February 2009

What's in a name?

There is a theme with the names of my applications: podWeasel, mapWeasel, beerWeasel ... see.

Why so Weasely?  I'm not really sure, it seemed appropriate somehow for an application that scurries around downloading stuff for you.  Same with the mapWeasel and it turns out a beerWeasel is a straw that you put in bottles of drink so you can drink them faster, handy.  That and the fact that a friend made we a sweet icon.

What's next?  Who knows but I'm sure it will be weasely.


The most recent of my development projects beerWeasel tracks your blood alcohol level over time.

The app lets you select your drinks and then, using the Widmark formula, calculates the amount of booze in your blood giving you a rough indication of how drunk you are and if you're still legally able to drive.  That said, it obviously shouldn't be used as an actualy indication of your intoxication because it's only and estimation and I don't want to get sued for people being stupid.

This is the first application that uses animations to move between views and, with the help of an arty friend, nice images.


The application which started it all.
When I bought my G1 I dicovered that there wasn't any software on it for doing RSS agregation or podcast downloading.  Being the kind of person that likes to tinker with code I figured that I might as well have a bash at making my own as, in the words of Jeremy Clarkson, 'How hard can it be'.

Turns out quite hard really.  After the industry standard amount of swearing and headscratching I managed to blunder my way to what could optomistically be called version 1.
I released it onto the marketplace where it received a fair few downloads but was basically hampered by it's limited abilities.

Long story short podWeasel now stands at the version v2.1 mark and has become, if I do say so myself, a fairly nifty little application.  It's now capable of waking the phone, establishing a wifi connection and downloading podcasts before going back to sleep until it is needed again.  You can tell it when to check your various feeds, it will even list those which you've downloaded and mark those which are new.  There is even a very basic media player.

I learned a heck of a lot getting podWeasel where it is now and I certainly enjoyed the experience.  The most important thing, from a more business perspective is releasing an application before it is really ready does more harm than good in the long run.  This is especially true on the marketplace where the ratings and comments are persisted across versions.


Available to people in the UK, although only actually useful to those in Britain, mapWeasel is a simple beast.
It reads the traffic incidents from the highways agency and displays them on a map along with your current position.

Hopefully I'll be adding in information for Scotland soon, assuming that the people in charge of the highways agency there actually update their feed like they said they would.  I was surprised when I found out that they had the geo-positioning information available but for some reason didn't bother adding it to their feed.  It's easy to get behind the times I guess, still.

Hi everybody

With the Android marketplace on the cusp of offering paid applications I figured that now would be a good time to share my experiences of developing applications for the G1.
Hopefully it will also provide somewhere for people to leave comments if they download my applications.

I might end up posting other random stuff about programming or gaming, who knows.