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  1.    #1  
    I guess my question is to all you app developers and as to how to get started in developing an app for resale or pennies per. I'm not a software genius, though this is how i feel about you great group of folks that make my life simpler. But I do have a lot of ideas that can be incorporated into the world of apps for a variety of smart phones.
    How should i get started? should i learn more about how to create apps in general, is this an easy process or is there some development house that can take my content and create my vision for a small fee and share in the profits of my company. I have a small team of educators and content creators and want to possibly explore this further and need some suggestions for our next board meeting so as to present a direction of where will will proceed.

    Any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
  2. bruba's Avatar
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    If you don't need to go deep into the system, I'd recommend Phonegap. PhoneGap

    It's a great tool for creating rich webkit (html5, css, javascript) apps. And since webOS, iOS and Android all support this, it's great for multiplatform development. (BlackBerry OS6 will incorporate webkit as well.)

    Creating a webOS app with Phonegap is almost native anyway (compared to the SDK).
  3. #3  
    Quote Originally Posted by lem855 View Post
    I have a small team of educators and content creators and want to possibly explore this further and need some suggestions for our next board meeting so as to present a direction of where will will proceed.
    If they're professional content creators they will already know this rule, but it bears repeating for clarity's sake.

    Ideas are cheap. Any high school student can easily come up with as many ideas as Stephen King. J.K. Rowling's ideas were old hat before she was born. Bill Gates blatantly copied Wozinak's blatant copy of Xerox's "windows" idea -- and no body had a leg to stand on after they wasted millions on the court battle, because, again, ideas are cheap.

    Now, if you're willing to put in the work (and there IS considerable work if you don't have any experience with asynchronous object-oriented javascript programming!), WebOS is an excellent place to start. Here's my formal advice, on how to begin work on an SDK app:

    -1: Learn HTML. I don't care what your role is, you need to be able to look at raw HTML and give a rough idea of what the output will be like. If you already learn HTML, learn the standard DOM manipulation practices, and brush up on your CSS. (If any word in this paragraph is unfamiliar, go spend $50 on a modern web development book, read it, and then come back.)

    0: Learn some Javascript. I suggest making, in turn, a calculator, a page that lets you change its background, and then a calculator with a more advanced function. (Not "memory" -- do "factoral." you need to know how to write a loop and return a value)

    1: With HTML and JavaScript firmly in your toolkit, go get the SDK and re-make your calculator with the Mojo widgets. (If you already knew HTML and JavaScript, make some other simple single-scene utility. Tip calculators are over-done but popular.)

    2: Learn what Palm means by "scenes" and "stages." (Each card is a stage, that shows multiple scenes...)

    3: Map out what you want your first real app to do, or who will work on what apps.

    4: Decide whom will do what -- graphics and logos, scene layout, programming. Give each programmer a SEPARATE TASK and let them have at it. (Programming is more like writing than anything else -- adding a second author gives you a second story, not the first one twice as fast) Each app needs a dedicated programmer, unless you're putting out shovel-ware like brighthouse labs.

    5: Use the Ares IDE. Even if you don't use the Ares widgets, it's the unqualified best environment for debugging and tweaking an app. (even if it does add the unwanted Ares files when you make the package right in Ares, whether or not you use the Ares widgets. I suggest downloading, pruning, and packaging on your own.)

    6: Release a free version of your app, whether or not you release a paid one. If you're going to make a paid app, decide what you will make the benefit of going paid over going free.

    7: For bonus credit, make your app talk to a web site. Google Docs is an excellent repository, free to use, and fairly straightforward to access. (Although not without some aggravating bugs.)
    Doug Meerschaert

    Apps: Scratch, GasMath, CheckMath
  4. jdod's Avatar
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    Thanks for laying it out Doug, I was interested to know as well.
    Sprint since 01/06/99: Sanyo SCP-4500 -> Audiovox PPC-6700 -> Palm Treo 755p -> Palm Centro -> Palm Pre 1.4.5 -> Jailbroken iPhone 4s
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by lem855 View Post
    ... I'm not a software genius, ...
    Just like you, I'm not a software guru either. But I found the Palm webOS book to be quite useful. You obviously need to beefup your skills in HTML/javascript/CSS (google is your best friend). And then get the SDK and look at the sample apps.
    But i have to warn you. Developing will take a lot of your time (unless if you plan to make spammy apps). Be prepared to pour time and effort and expect little yield and negative feedbacks from reviewers. I'd avoid releasing a free app, unless you're doing it to promote your other apps, or its ad-supported, or you're not concerned about revenue. You can get ScreenFlow to create demo videos of your app to showcase how it operates.

    Now, if you've got a ton of ideas and don't have the time/expertise to execute them, I can help
    Inglorious Apps
    Developer of: Glimpse, Notes HD, Clipboard, Pix, Voices, Casa, Plickr, TweetCam, and Notes

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