4 Important Skills That Any App Developer Must Have

Posted by | app developers, Blog | No Comments

For the finest moments in a life to call, construct your stakes for the hard work but more than that acquire the skills. This fact is true for all the professions or any work and rightly true in the app development too. In the IT sector, particularly in the mobile application development, only acquiring programming skills is not an assurance of the success, though it can help in developing a great app. Requirement is to acquire strategic skills that can push your application across competition.`

And here are some of them?

Acquiring Cross-Platform Capability

Cross-platform applications are a trend of today. If an app is developed only on one Operating System, it can cut off your huge user base. So today’s developers should have a cross platform plan before they could begin their coding process. Developers should keep themselves updated for cross-platform development engines popping up through the internet. They are designed to help mobile application developers to port their apps through main operating systems.

Now users are also demanding more, more usefulness, more value, and more entertainment through their mobile phone. To meet their needs they are getting much more wearable tech like Virtually Reality devices or great 3D experiences. Many IT giants are making efforts to reduce the bridge between Smartphone and other platforms, and they are getting success to in the same.

Right through planning and implementing developers mind should traverse through different options available on the net. This process would make them more skilled in giving what is new and best to the users.

Nose For UI/UX

Quite operational and functional bug free code is only one a part of the job, rest is to have a nose for user’s requirements and needs. This aspect is successfully actualized with the help of User Interface or User Experience designs on the app, the designs through which users will feel more comfortable and associated. As a developer, you can take short courses in understanding what a UX means in development and how can UX and UI is achievable, though you can take the help of experienced UX/UI designers too.

Know The ways to Localize Your Apps

As the mobile market has been building across the globe, developers are also thinking on different ways in how they could get their app reach the global audience. As an app developer, you need to understand, “Where is your market”?, which requires analysis and study about the market position. Secondly tailor the app as per the geographical location, which requires for translating the content for the region specific and modifying as per the culture, taste and preference of the locals. For example, if your target audience is China, you can remove any tie-ups with Facebook or Google and incorporate plugins for Chinese sites like Weibo or Baidu. If your clients are Europeans, be more careful with data privacy.   In these situations you have to keep on updating your app, cutting down the information or adding more as need be. So just be alert.

Adopt An Agile Approach

It is a quite right that mobile market is neither too old nor it is new as app market is always evolving, It is, therefore, very difficult for the developers to understand what customers actually wanted to now the kinds of apps required. Agile engineering is most appropriate method to handle any confusions in customer’s needs and is a constant process. All the successful apps begin with the basic premises of meeting the needs as their next goal is to acquire a minimal viable product into the hands of customers. You can very well develop a quick MVP within weeks or months but once you have customers feedback, you can regularly improve and keep on adding more features.

Knowledge is an unending process, more knowledge you game, more the skills you can acquire and more will be a success. And it is also a right time for it, So get going!

Apps and Mobile Testing

Simple Way to Test Your Web Pages and Apps on Your Mobile Devices

Posted by | Apps testing, Testing web pages | No Comments

Now you have created your web page and application for your mobile device, but you would want to be sure if your web page and mobile applications are working fine and meeting quality standards. To know this you require to test the app. Testing points out any problems or issues which are still remaining and provides you an idea of all that readers might experience when they visit your site.

Procedure for testing a page or an application is same as it is for a browser. You need to check that page is appealing and it is live. In testing, Quality Assurance of the mobile or web page is requisite. As the designing requirement of the touch screen tablet is different, so tablets apps is perceived from a different perspective.

It is always best to test the apps on different websites and devices, but it is highly suggested to start with the iPod, and then go on for iPhone, Ipod touch, Android phones, tablets or other cell phones or smart phones.

People who are browsing the web on the older cell phones and less smart phones can deal with the problems in designs even if they so occurs. But as the devices gets more sophisticated so are the expectations of the readers. It becomes all the more important to test for the designing and UX too.

Let’s have A Look at Some of the Points for Meeting Quality Testing and Standard:

Authenticate your HTML to ensure that there are no errors. It is not necessary to prove hundred percent validation. At least with this finding you can remove the errors and feel protective about any kind of problems in the future.

Check all the web pages and pages of the mobile application by uploading your application on your mobile device. In case you don’t have a device, you can rent, buy or can utilize the services of uTest for testing your app or a site.

Else you can use an emulator. These emulators are bit slower and do not display all the device features too, so they will be able to give accurate information but at least they would test functionality of your app. These are operated with the help of a mouse.

There are desktop emulators or online emulators. The facility or usage that emulators providers can be very less in contrast to the desktop emulators. Many of them only shows the functioning of the interactive elements and do not all support screen shots on the screens, and no way an ideal solution for performing testing.

If you have failed in the testing process, your customer will just whisk away, so accuracy and perfection in the testing process what is most required. Testing process needs to ascertain that the mobile app is downloaded on the device, executed and interacted with the content infrastructure. Whenever there are any updates, it is important to make sure that apps are pushed out and accepted by the user.

There is a great misconception that testing of app functionality on one device is its assurance of all the others in the same operating system. For instance if testing is being done on Native applications, it is very important to test on the devices that support these apps. It is assured that if issues are found with your native apps, they can be resolved and shared with the others at ease.

Mobile Development Tools

Top 6 Mobile Development Tools To Empower Developers

Posted by | mobile development tools | No Comments

Today when the cross market apps are achieving to take the forefront, more developers are looking to make the most of the audience size on different platforms. However, what is constraining is the lack of knowledge and varied different programming languages that are passing along with time. Today’s developers with heavy work loads and competition at the peak and no time to devote, what would they do? They utilize different well planned cross-platform development tools, giving the designers their time to breathe.

Here’s are the top six picks in cross-platform tools:

PhoneGap

Probably the best and most accepted development tool for multiple platforms is PhoneGap. Also known to many as the Apache Cordova, PhoneGap is ideal for developers who don’t have much knowledge of the servers and need to design apps using the experience on the front end. Since it is one of the oldest tools for developers, the changes, features and updates are quite frequent. Adding to this, PhoneGap is essentially open-source, so there are endless plugins for free available for developers. While designing Hybrid Apps, developers still need to concentrate on performance metrics, given that such apps can have their own issues.

Xamarin 2.0

For those who are advanced with app designing and need some help, Xamarin 2.0 is a good tool that allows cross-platform app development with ease, exclusively for Android and iOS. This is a C#-based platform, where the code is executed on a .NET framework. Once the process is completed, it is returned to the standard code for both platforms. Thanks to the features it offers for iOS and Android, working on large projects doesn’t seem tough anymore

Appcelerator

Another great choice is Appcelerator, which works using a JavaScript API coupled with native UI features. For the developers, Appcelerator works wonders because they can code in JavaScript, and the tool works on the various UI elements that are native to the platform. No doubt, the app performance is bettered by many times. What makes this tool work is the presence use of JavaScript, and there are features like analytics and BaaS, which works great.

Unity

If one is looking for a cross-platform development tool that focuses on games alone, Unity is the name to go by. With an “integrated development environment (IDE)”, this tool brings in a game engine that works for all platforms. As for the developers, they can use UnityScript, which is ECMAScript syntax in customized version, or C#. Also there is support for Python-inspired Boo. One reason to go for Unity is the graphics engine that does wonders with variety of APIs for better user experience.

RhoMobile

Using Ruby for the integrated framework, RhoMobile is a great dev tool that works for making apps compatible with varied platforms. The app works best for those who are advanced in the field, but yes, there is also support for newbie app developers. Features like RhoHub and RhoSync only make the tool even more worth attention.

Sencha

It is a framework for formulating a web development for giving the same appearance and look as that of the native applications. The importance of this tool lies in using in conjunction with PhoneGap or using the same alone. It still helps developers have the complete control over the level API which is generally not applicable for the web applications.

Development tools are not less but many, this entails developers to continue patrolling for the tool, that would increase their performance. With the intensity to press forward towards HTML 5, developers can expect for much more frame works Developers should check on the reviews before .

nodejs

Latest trick of JXCore’s to compile self-running apps out of Node.js projects

Posted by | JXCore | No Comments

JXCore has gained a lot of attention due to the boost it has given to the performance of Node by adding a novel multi threading mechanism. JXCore is a division of Node.js which has now got something much innovative in the latest release of its where it can convert the Node.js projects into the self-running apps.

The new version of JXCore is named as JXCore2.30 and it has the ability to compile all the Node.js applications with all of its dependent modules to one single deliverable which has no outer dependencies. With this, now a non-Node user can also run the resulting binary without installing anything additional to it.

Platform-dependent packaging process

The packaging is completely dependent on the platform it is compiled of, for instance, only a Windows user can package the executable of Windows. According to the sources, apparently JXCore has plans to monetize the requirements of cross-compilation for all other platforms. The company also announced through its blog post that “We are offering a paid cloud binary for individuals and companies which can compile their own solution for multiple operating architectures/systems on a single developer machine.

The Node.js application is packaged in a way similar to that of a Python application by compiling the executable of Node.js with its application files. The Python application is also bundled with the copies of its own interpreter. For a Node app to be used on a desktop, Roger Wang’s node-webkit can be used in packaging it.

The prime Function of JXCore’s

The basic purpose of the JXCore’s approach is to produce the packages which are much easier to deliver, self contained and are uneasy to be tampered. The previous versions of JXCore used to allow the application files to be bundled into one single .jx file to protect it, but that still require Node.js binary in order to run it.

The prime objection which many users have is that the JXCore has risen before. It is presently a closed source project. Although the official JXCore site says that the JXCore shall be an open sourced one, prior to its release. This has made uneasy for those who were unwilling to commit previously. The interesting part will be to observe how the changes in JXCore are re-committed back into the Node.js.

Learn How to Create 3D Fantasy Characters

Posted by | 3d art, ZBrush | No Comments

There is this famous 3D art project which is known as Heavy Knight, a character based on the design concept of a Heavy Knight for the universe of Twilight Monkby Trent Kaniuga. About six months were spent by Jose Rodriguez, one of the well known senior character artist. The base of the project was on 3D Max along with the V0Ray and the ZBrush was also used in order to create all the details for displacing the maps.

According to Rodriguez, he is an artist which follows the traditional practices of experiments and mixing the techniques in 3D Max and the ZBrush which creates the hard surfaces for all the props that he uses. As per this senior character artist, there are basically two areas that he enjoys working, shaping the high-resolution detail and crafting the work in order to bring pictures to life.

While referring to his work done in designing Heavy Knight, Rodriguez tells that the work of 2D and 3D artists has an amazing influence on the entire project but the basic idea comes from the gaming companies which do the cinematic work along with the games. He referred the cinematic word done by Blur and Blizzard and also praised the sort of technical expertise and the aesthetic ambiance they create is magnificent in all the movies they worked in.

Creation of base

A drawing or a basic model is relevant to have a base for the entire design of the character based on which the body of the armor can be crafted.

Using several objects at the same time

As per the base design there can be several objects in one single character, say if it is of a warrior there can be several armor installed. To make this function different primitives are to be created simulating the basic shapes, positioning of the property used and its size taking into consideration. After all these is done the ZBrush is to be used for adding up the details.

Practical geometry

If ever the prime idea is to design a still image, yet an organized geometry has to be used and rigged as it helps a lot in other part of designing process.

Color focus

Using of the colors can be a great added advantage. In the case of designing the armor there can be a color play of light and dark shades used simultaneously.

The position of the character

The position of the character has to be set as it defines the entire game and the interest level of the user. ZBrush can be used very effectively to serve the purpose. Also by selecting the armor pieces apply the Edit Poly modifier in 3ds Max along with the usage of Soft Selection and with rotation and movement of each piece till it reaches a convincing position, can also be an option.

Designing the Background

Selecting a simple background can offer the character a lead. Well, for some of the experts creating the sets is very simple and fast as well. Applying the bend modifier to the background images or the wall and also by using the curve aspect can work out amazingly.

creative coding

Learn How to Break Into Creative Coding

Posted by | coding, creative codes, web developer | No Comments

Creative coding is always believed to be fun doing but is equally difficult to initiate. If you have a look on a website with very complex CSS transitions or some of the very unusual WebGL it is surely a work done by a coder Jedi which has the potential to work out with such brilliance of engineering.

It is a fact that to be a technical perfectionist can take you a real long way but it is then not worth to know anything and everything to achieve something. One can also follow a process or a sound methodology for this.

Many of the geniuses have followed such routes in building up their way by intersecting the technology with design. Some also love the usage of codes to be artistic and expressive. For many the WebGL projects are the reason for the users to lose their basic goals. There needs to be a balance between the artistic and the pragmatic so that the creative code shall look much more than experimentation and the art. The product outcome can be much more than the most recent design paradigm which a huge tech firm had brought up. It can also be done by showcasing all of that by designing a unique, creative and ever-changing symbol or logo.

It simply means putting the money where the mouth is. Here is the explanation of one such logo which is being made.

The inside process

The logo which is visible is not just one made in HTML canvas but there are several such canvases performing their jobs:

  • The logo that drew the footer marks of logo
  • The footer that drew the color/triangle effectiveness at the lower end of the page
  • The Favicon that has scaled the logo to the size of 16 x 16

To receive the exact mark as required the vector version was run through Draw Script tool which then converted the vector shapes to form the JavaScript which is then to be used in a tag named as <canvas>.

The colors seen on the logo are then formed due to the plug-in which is known as Flat Surface Shader. It is designed by Tobias Schneider and Matthew Wager field. It is a very simple process to derive the technique, by visiting the ‘View Source’ on their website and copy-paste the effects used their and later on by changing the numbers till something very appealing is achieved.

The Shader plug-in did not supported the changing colors in the way expected and hence another library called as Tiny color was being used along with the Tween to get the yo-yo effect between the colors. The colors can be changed as per the requirements and in the future use the colors shall automatically be changed as per the client’s requirements.

The Issues

After reading all these it might sound very daunting to you but this is done with the help of many brilliant minds along with people helping on the branding part as well. After researching on various ideas this was the final result that came up.

Initially there would be many such issues that you may also face while designing these. The initial ones can be solved with much ease if you follow the prototypes by using Google as guide. You can also try the libraries such as the Kinetic JS and the Create JS. Once the initial problems got sorted out you can easily solve the rest ones.

Building the Tools

The logo looks very sharp but the social media icons look much dull. For that one can create the Arbitrary Logo Generator. This is the tool which lets you create the animated PNG and GIF variations. The best part about the logo generator is that it lets you scrub back and forth. It enables the designer to have the right frame needed at a particular moment. For creating the wallpapers and other presentations a larger version of Arbitrary Logo Generator can also be created which is known as the Arbitrary Background Generator.

Conclusion

The processes make a developer good and not the syntax. The trick is to understand what is so better about the web, the interactivity and intersection of designs. It is always better to collaborate with many and breaking down the problem. One can learn by doing this and build several prototypes. Whatever worst happens gives you a learning and helps you grow.

Node js

Node.js: Latest Security risk for Developers

Posted by | Javascript | No Comments

Node.js has now become a very critical log at various places such as Wal-Mart and PayPal. According to the technologists, the developers are now required to be careful in securing their Node.js applications.

Now, JavaScript platform is brought in use in order to protect the financial transaction at several enterprises. Node.js shares the security data with the client side, JavaScript and also with several other platforms. The core of Node is JavaScript and hence it contains the issues which are also there with JavaScript. Although the context of executing V8, Node.js uses the JavaScript which is completely different than a browser as it executes on the server. The difference here gives options for the unique area and attracts the attacks.

According to a senior UI engineer at PayPal,Mark Stuart, Node is still the JavaScript and hence eval exists and all such disturbing things happen on the server side as it takes place on client side. Mark also advices the developers to use some of the great quality security scanning modules and defaults.

The vitality of security on Node.js has led to form a Node Security Project, which is headed by Baldwin, and it desires to audit the Node packaged modules (NPMs). Developers are required to address the common security issues in their code very actively using several available resources such as Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) which also includes the cross-site request forgery,cross-site scripting, invalidated redirects,security misconfiguration and the invalidated forwards.

How to Make Your Website Copy ‘Pop’

Posted by | Blog, web design | No Comments

If you have a website of your business and you have complains of visitors not frequently visiting your website and you are not having enough of conversions, it’s time for you to get the website copy ‘popped’.

To make a website copy ‘pop’ is just to have the site and the pages on it in a way which grabs the attention of the viewers. The content on the website has to be something which stands out and compels the potential customers of the website and encourages them to get deeper into the website.

In the busy time of today, nobody has enough of time to spend on sitting on a website and search for things rather people prefer taking guidance from someone who is worth it. And if you are a website owner you might never like your site to be a bore one and which can affect your sales as well.

Here are some of the methods by which you can have the content of your website interesting and can also grab the attention of the viewers as well.

Precise Content

You must be visiting several websites every day, how much in depth you read the content on the website? Similarly the viewers on you websites are also in a hurry an need the right thing at the right place, in front of their eyes with making efforts in searching. You can follow some of these steps in order to have the content precise.

  • Try keeping the content short and crispy, worth reading.
  • Ignore big paragraphs and put the content in bullets in case it needs to be elaborated.
  • Try and Use white background
  • Use links in the contents and,
  • Keep blank spaces in between the contents

Appealing Homepage

The homepage of your website is the entrance to the website, try making it attractive visually and use creative techniques in designing the homepage. Whenever someone visits your website a feeling of confidence and trust on your structure of business should be generating, this can help you take your business way ahead.

  • Ignore automatically played videos and audio
  • Ignore blocks of content
  • Keep things to the point and appealing
  • Always try to use images with high quality but easily loaded

Goal oriented approach towards the target audience

With precise goals set for your business you can move ahead multi-dimensionally. Always keep the goals of your business present on the content of your website and your approach to meet the demand of your targeted audience should be precise. Knowing the right audience for you can let you serve them better and this brings you closer towards achieving your goals.

Twitter_Cardspring

Social Media Takes On E-commerce As Its New Battleground

Posted by | e-commerce, Social media | No Comments

Two of the prime opponents in the Social media world of today have now taken the route of e-commerce and made it a platform for the battle.

The Twitter Side

Twitter announcing the takeover of CardSpring, one of the leading mobile payments gate-way company which allows merchant banking services to the customer.

For a micro-blogging site like twitter it has become a platform to promote services offered by several vendors across the globe by using creative ads in just 140 characters, which is quite appealing and allows the user to grab that in mere single click. For years the American Express has collaborated with twitter and offered he cardholders of AE the accessibility of loading varieties of discounts on their cards through the tweets.

Along with the payment processing company Stripe Twitter is exploring the mediums to allow the users to buy a particular service or product by just one click. As the speculations have being denied by the spokesperson of Twitter but on the official blog they have made the mention of having their commercial plans to be revealed in the time to come.

The Facebook Side

Contrary to Twitter, Facebook has already taken a step ahead, already. The company has tested the ‘buy’ button on its phone app along with the desktop site as well. The feature of this ‘buy’ button will enable the buyers to make the purchases directly from the Facebook network.

Facebook has also revealed that it will initiate this process of keeping the direct purchases, initially with some of the mid-sized merchants which will allow the Facebook users to buy a product directly from a post made.

The complete process will be managed by the Facebook and as the user clicks the buy key, a pop up shall be appearing seeking the payment information of the user and the shipping address. After which the user shall be directed towards a third-party payments processor which will let the merchant know the details of the product ordered by the user. As per the statements released by the Facebook officials the financial information of the users shall be kept secured and the users need not to save the credit card data on the site.

The basic idea of these sites behind such actions is to keep the buying experience and the process a quick one. Instead of forcing the user to re-direct onto another app or website is a bore. With more than 1.3 billion user on Facebook and Twitter with more than 40 million users has the largest platforms for any of the e-commerce sites to expand their business and can maximize the profitability. Easily hitting the potential customers as per the likes and interest on Facebook and to the entire mass of any particular region on twitter can be proved as a boon for the E-commerce as well as these social media sites in expanding their presence in almost every part of the world.

WebP

Google’s WebP to Speed up Image Viewing

Posted by | faster image loading, WebP | No Comments

Internet users must have witnessed slow pages, and this has now hurt the Google as well. To offer a solution to this Google has now come up with the key which not only speeds up the web but replaces the present image file formats such as JPEG and others. This results in a faster image loading and saves the bandwidth as well for many of the website owners. Now the question is, will this be convincible to the users to switch to the new image format or Google needs to re-think on its plans.

What WebP does?

The WebP is known to be the 3rd best image compression than JPEG that saves a lot of the bandwidth and improves the speed according to the page of the websites and its heaviness. This is a tested format by several Google products such as YouTube and Chrome. The YouTube managed to reduce the page loading duration by approximately 10% after it initiated the WebP video-thumbnails to roll out. With the switching of the image format in Chrome Web Store from JPEG to WebP, Google has cut down its average load-time by approximately one-third of the previously recorded duration. Not just that, but Google has also saved many Terabytes of bandwidth on daily basis after using WebP images in Chrome web store.

History of WebP

The emergence of WebP was just an accident and it all commenced with a video. While working on the WebM video format which is basically based on the video codecVP8. As videos are collective presentations of images and while working on the WebM format the developers discovered that it is a format which is compressing the frames which are the pictures of a new sequence while it is beginning.

Issues with WebP

In the argument of implementing the WebP formats and replacing the other image formats, Facebook has maintained a firm silence about it as it is much keen in having the page load getting easier along with saving some amount of bandwidth as well. And in fact Facebook already started using such formats earlier this year with some of the images on various pages on Facebook. But they soon realized that people are not just interested in viewing the images of their friends but they are much more interested in downloading and sharing on other social media sites as well. This was an alarm for the developers of the social media giant and it reversed the process of saving the files to JPEG. This also gave Google a lesson and it then turned the Chrome as the default viewer of the WebP image files on the user’s computers.

In the Mobile applications, WebP can be a boon if the iOS and Android developers set the necessaries libraries in order to decode the WebP image files on their applications. This can also make the user experience on mobile a safer deal. The major part of the entire process is to convert the JPEG to WebP along with the mobile optimizations which make Chrome deduct the mobile data usage to go down by almost 50%. Even though WebP cannot be the desired format by the masses yet this can be a tool remained with the developers to use in the future time to come and can save the bandwidth and make the web experience a much faster one.