Evaluation on App Design

Screen Shot 2016-01-13 at 03.05.36For this project I was asked to continue the second half of Design Iterations where I was asked to build a functional Prototype for my IOS mobile application while including the design process from the first half into my designs on xcode. The Application had to store Geocached data and only be accessed when the users has entered that location and closes when you leave the said location. However, this project showed me problematic issue in which I then found ways to over come and work out thought the time spent on it.

The process of making the application has been a fun and interesting journey with lots of ups and downs throughout the whole project. Some of the good things to come out of my project was designing each page and making it relate to a storyline in which was so random and bazar. With my bazar story I was able to create some wacky designs along with some very interesting Geocached stories within my app. I did love designing however the coding was fun, Stressful but indeed fun. When you get a start on what you are doing you work out little things and start to get a wider knowledge of what you are doing. Leaning code cant be taught by reading it from a book, but placing it into a project where we decides what happens makes it more interesting and it really motivates you into looking online and talking to class mates on the different code we have gathered.

However when it comes to coding there is some down sides to it. There are just them moments when you want to slam your computer on the ground due to the frustration of not working. However with the update of my homepage was to improve my skill in coding but overall I feel it don’t look as nice and I only did it to make my app have more coding to experiment with ideas and all but unfortunately it turned out worse than I expected and just wish it had of worked. Other things such as the news pages could have been designed better with a nice layout. I was just trying to show what you can do but i’m improvement on design would not have hurt

Although my app dose do everything I was asked to do I still wished I could have added more features into my work. I feel that the app I have been improved more and not just reading stories. I think if I had more time I would have tried more with the regions and work out a way how I could get the user to approach a Balloon pin and then be click onto the story when in the area. Also I could improve my app by adding some useful functions for the users to use. As I had before in the design process I thought of adding a menu page and include a verity of pages. This could have made the app more useful but also it may make the app overloaded and would take some time. However if I had more time I would look into more ways of improving the app to make it more interesting

Seeing my app work for the 1st time made me so happy inside I couldn’t believe it, However I got this feeling many times throughout my testing process. Just to see the build successful and see that all the errors have gone away and you fixed it all by yourself is just the best feeling that keeps on repeating throughout the whole duration of coding. Overall I have loved my experience in creating an app for the first time. I do wish to continue designing and making these application and look forward for the next project to come. collargeballon

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Target Audience

 

My audience is based in Bournemouth to a group of people who are interested in the post apocalyptic horror and crisis about the world around them and what might happen in the future even if it is very unlikely to happen. I couldn’t just appel to a certain type of people for this app as if I had done so then the chances of my app may not be used and nobody would have seen the work I had placed into creating this app. This would mean there would be no appreciation for my work which isn’t good for any applications for funding and support for a business. This means that the subject matter needs to be something more broad that will interest a range of people who may also have different backgrounds. This can include large groups of people with the same interests because this all will benefit them. This can be either for making their life easier by offering a service that they can’t get better else where or entertains them in their spear time. As shown below I have come up with a Scenario followed by three personas of people that could use this app in the future as it would be beneficial to them and gain their interests. This has remained the same as the first assiment because I have stood by the same idea and nothing has changed

Gantt Chart

Screen Shot 2016-01-10 at 21.44.47Just like in the first half dossier I included a Gantt Chart on the time scale I wish to complete in a realistic manner. I changed the Gantt chart when I started this project because plans had changed and I thought I needed to make my time more efficiently and making sure I that all areas were covered with enough time to complete and make sure nothing is rushed and I have left extra time to improve my designs though experimenting ideas. At the start I had to still design the news pages to add to the app however in the end I made do with just adding numbers so I did the designs later on. This wasn’t a good idea as I should have just done the designs when I said I should have and the work wouldn’t be as rushed. But I didn’t want to fall back on the coding side and left the holidays for doing the news pages as I knew I wouldn’t need help with Photoshop. Everything else went smoothly and worked out nicely.

Evolution of my designs

Screen Shot 2016-01-13 at 03.01.28This project I have come a very long way from where I started. I can still recall spending hours drawing out ideas for what I wanted the app to even look like and now I have come so far with this. As I look though my work I can see my little pathetic idea of just some boxes with X’s inside meaning images and only drawn in pen. Since then I have come a long way. Passing thought the Photoshop stage where I basically made what I wanted the homepage to look like and placed it into an iPhone to look realistic. Then following thought to xcode and importing my Photoshop image to be fully functional for the app. I then had a change in heart to test new ways of displaying my idea in more exciting interesting ways. I then placed a map onto the page and placed pins for where the stories are based around. If I was to predict where I would be in 3 months at the start of this project, I would have never guessed I would have come so far and made a successful application.

Adding New Creations

I then thought I had finished the app but thought I should try and make my app more interesting seeing as I have some more time to play with. Although for my safty I then made this a branch on GitHub so I didn’t make the code go totally wrong. What I wanted to do was change the home page to display a map and follow the user location. As the user moves around Bournemouth they would then cross a floating balloon pin in different locations. You then can only click on that story when you are in that location. However, things don’t go to plan and came across a a few issues. First I made a mock up of what I was trying to make in Photoshop in the first image.

 

I then moved into xcode to make this reality. I then added mapkit and my balloon pointers that are in fact buttons and placed them onto the page. Then I noticed that that map wasn’t loading onto the app and then after fiddling about with the code for a while the map finally came up. I then clicked the user location button to make sure GPS follows the user around Bournemouth using the locations file I made where the user goes from the beach to the station up to uni and back to town. This was mainly so I can spread out all the stories I have for the app. Soon I found this could be a issue due to when you open the app the page zooms right in with the GPS and follows it around having the page constantly moving. This was an issue because I couldn’t attach my balloons to the pin to the map itself so it is hard to place them so the user can approach them. I then swapped it around to make lots of different pins where the GPS would go passed on its loop. This worked so far however when it came to me adding regions it just wouldn’t work for me and I couldn’t find a way how to make the pins link to my news stories so this unfortunately couldn’t work for me.

 

I then went to my last option which was making the map as an image then adding the balloon buttons on top of the map. I really didn’t want to do this but was the only way to keep the new design that I liked more that the original and means more stories can be added. But the GPS wont show where the user is, which is a sad thing as I liked that function on my work. Then I tested my app for another time to see that some pages where not in line and also two of the pin point where accidently swapped around so I switched them to the correct place. Finally Finished!

App Designing

Screen Shot 2016-01-12 at 15.14.13

The next stage I started trying to fix all of the small errors that will make my app so much better that before. I started by adding the AppIcon so that when I load up the application you will see my icon on the iPhones home screen. Though this was annoying having to make all the different sizes for each product the app could run on. After this I continued designing each news story about the Balloon Invasion. I did originally use the same images from the homepage on these pages as I wanted them to match but they were images from google so I switched them out with some photos I took in 2013 when I was on holiday in Bournemouth. This means they are not copyrighted and im able to use in my app. Although I would have to go back and change the homepage at a later date. Shortly after testing to see if all the pages where the right size I found out that when you click the fourth news button it then broke. But shortly fixed this issue as I accidently linked the button to something I shouldn’t have, after I unlinked it the app then worked. I then touched everything up hoping it all works. After testing this I tested the app and saw that my app indeed lets you only access the app unless you are at Bournemouth Pier. You then see an enter button and taken to the homepage with all the news articles displayed in front of you. Then you are able to click on any story and it will take you to that pelage displaying that story. Then finally when you leave the location you are kicked out of the App.Screen Shot 2016-01-12 at 10.07.53

Lookin Back on MoSCoW

 

I then had completed what I needed to in the Application or so what I had thought. I then refered back to the MoSCow method I had created in the first half of this assiment. When it came to building the app I prioritised what I needed in the app by including all the must’s and worked my way down the list untill my app is able to all that I wanted it to do and also make sure that app don’t do anything I have placed on the wont list. I then over locked the document starting from MUST! List on what I thought my app needed at that piont. I would tent work my way downwards making sure I have not missed everything. However some of the requests I made are not possibel. I did say my app should be able to post stories from the user but this isnt possible as it has no relavence in my application because the user is reading about something that has alreaddy happened and had no need to post any stories. Also when it comes to what I Could have included the fact on adding 3G data, Translations and Reading out text isnt in my abilty however if I had more time I would expand my knoledge on how to do these things and then I could simply add them in.

Although with my wont section my app don’t allow users to capture media with it to publish geocaches and also send information outside of the app.Screen Shot 2016-01-10 at 21.38.01

Application Xcode

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I then moved onto the other pages for my News report application. Seeing as I didn’t have the pages made yet I added images with the numbers 1-9 to show what page would go where in my application and then I was able to link up with Segway’s to the pages with the main menu page. This is so at a later date when I have made the news pages I can just add them in as if it was like that from the start. I then had to add the Geocache information to make the app become a geocached application. I first added the location walking cycle into my work for the app to follow from Bournemouth Pier to Boscombe Pier and finally the Gardens. This was so I could set the geocache at Bournemouth pier so only when you are here you are able to access the application. I then made the app notify you that you have entered the Geocache and allows it to use your location. I had also added a Vibration onto this so the user can feel the notification as well as see it. I then also added the function here that the Enter button will only show when the user is at the Bournemouth Pier and then When the user leaves the button disappears. I carried on to then make the application kick you out when you leave the location but this got annoying when testing to see if the app worked or not co for now I commented it out to then place it back in when the app if fully working and no more editing is needed to be made.

BBC News Application

On my phone I have an application called BBC News to read on recent events happing around the country. This app is a National news app for the United Kingdom that shows the latest and biggest stories in the UK on that day and also in your local Area. The app is coloured mainly red to relate to the BBC One where the news channel is shown on and stand out more with the white news boxes. The pages are easy to navigate though and visually pleasing to the eye. This app is kind of like mine application minus the Killing Balloon rampage. This app displays a homepage and then asks for your location, on acceptation you then are able to open the local stories of the county you live in. This matching mine app as you only can read the news from that one location and not the others unless you are there or at least saved the page when you were there. This can be annoying however as I am unable to read the local news while at Uni. This is where I got my inspiration from by having a news page with stories located on the first page but I wasn’t too fond on the rectangle boxes so changed my designs to squares. Also this means the news stories will stack better on top of each other.

Design Skills

For this project I have used a lot of my own skills as well as picking up some new skills along the way. Some of these skills that I have used for this project are…

Design Skills

  • Visual Ideation 
 Wire framing 
               
Imagination and creative thinking
  • UI Designs Prototyping 
                 Effective Storytelling
  • Storyboard 
 Design and layout 
      Project Management
  • Scenario Design 
 Technical Skills 
          Adobe Photoshop
  • Programming 
 Swift 2 
                        Xcode
  • Adobe Illustrator