We've Moved


It can be found at the new website: http://fifteen15studios.com/blog/

Personal Blog

Want to know more about the man behind the programs? Check out my personal blog: http://havens1515.blogspot.com

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Auto Respond crash bug

I've found a crash bug when using the status widget. It was an easy fix, but I can't compile an apk at work. I will push an update when I get home. 

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Auto Respond 1.3.4

I just published Auto Respond 1.3.4. Most of you are probably asleep (or will be by the time it's available) but it'll be ready for you in the AM. Here's the change log:
  • Fixed a crash in Dock menu when clicking settings name instead of switch (4.0+)
  • Moved "help" to the bottom of the menu
  • Reload all widgets on reboot
  • Changed error message in "Do not Respond" settings to be more clear
The crash in the Dock menu has actually been around for a while, but I just now figured out what was causing it. All changes apply to both the free and pro version.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Google Games!!!

It's there! In my Developer Console... "Google Play Games Services"!

I can't wait to play around with it, and network up my Tic Tac Toe game, and hopefully finish up Euchre soon, and get that networked.

I have some achievement ideas for Tic Tac Toe as well. I know, there's not a whole lot you can do with achievements in Tic Tac Toe, but I found some things. I've also got achievements already built into the existing Windows version of my Euchre game, so those will be coming over to Android, and I may add a few more. I may also categorize them a little differently than they are right now... we'll have to see.

In any case, I'm REALLY excited to get coding, there's just one problem... I don't have much time this week because I'm moving this week/weekend :-(

So most of the work won't even get started until next week. I've first got to read through the documentation and see how to use the API and all of that stuff, so it might be a couple weeks before any actual progress gets made. We'll see how difficult it is, hopefully I can get some good work knocked out in a little time.

Monday, May 13, 2013

New name?

Lots of questions coming up tonight! (I told you my mind was running wild!)

What do you like better:

1515 Studios (Current name)
Fifteen15 Studios (Potential Rename)

I wish there was an easy way for me to imdeb a poll, but I don't really know how to go about that, so leave your suggestion in the comments! (Please!)

New app?

Today has been one of those days that my mind has been wandering.... and wandering to good places. This is the result of one of those wanderings.

I've been using a countdown widget app for quite some time now, and recently the developer updated the app and completely ruined it in my opinion. I have not downloaded the most recent update because it looks terrible, and there are a bunch of negative reviews about how transparency was removed, and it overall did not look good. So I kept the old version, so that I could keep my widget as-is.

So suddenly I started thinking... I could make an app like this. And it wouldn't really take too long. I've got the gist of widgets now, I've done a count-down type of code with the schedules, and I can add in a TON of customization from what I have learned doing both Auto Respond and Tic Tac Toe.

So here it is... some ideas for my countdown widget app:
  • Information
    • Name/Title of event
    • Date (optional? - only time - repeat daily)
    • Option - Time
      • Either date or time would be required if date becomes optional
    • Option - Show hours instead of days 
    • Option - Show hours when less than X days left
  • Look and feel
    • Selectable color/image for background
    • Selectable transparency for background
    • Text
      • Selectable color for all text
      • All text same color checkbox
      • Customizable text order
        • Text1 - Name
        • Text2 - Date
        • Text3 - Days/hours remaining
    • Stock images (to come later)
  • Selectable size in setup? (? = not sure if this is possible in the setup screen)
    • 1x1
    • 2x1
    • 2x2 with picture background
    • 3x3 (?) with picture on side (? = I'd have to play with sizes for this one, to see what works best)
  • Show preview of widget as changes are made
  • Option - Remove widget automatically when countdown reaches 0
  • Option - notification/alarm when countdown reaches 0
    • alert sound
    • alert vibrate
These are the notes I've made for myself so far. Any other ideas you can think of for a countdown widget? 

It's a simple idea but, as you have probably noticed in my other apps, I like options and customization! :-)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Google Games is coming!

For those of you who don't know, Google I/O starts on Wednesday!

There has been a LOT of speculation as to what will be announced at I/O, but there have been some things that have been pretty much confirmed, and right now, Google Games is one of them.

Android Police (AP) did one of their famous teardowns of some new a new Google Play Services app, and found a TON of references to Google Games, and even some working pieces!

Reading this got my mind rolling with ideas for Tic Tac Toe and Euchre. New achievements all over the place, new ways to get people connected, new ways to get more people playing, and new ways to have more fun with the games that I've already created! (Or in Euchre's case, mostly created)

Since none of this has been officially released (or even officially announced) I can't really start working on these things yet. But you can be assured that I will be working on it soon! (Well, once things get settled down in my personal life. Check out my personal blog for details on that.)

Friday, May 10, 2013

Auto Respond

Sorry for the bugs... I created a new function that was similar to an existing function. I copy and pasted the code, but what I didn't realize is that the trigger had to be opposite on the new function.

This created all sorts of havoc. I found a few other things when I got home that needed to be changed to allow the new function to work properly.

It should all be fixed now though. The new version has been published, and should be available in a couple hours when Google's servers sync.

Auto Respond 1.3.3 Bug

Sorry guys, but there is a bug in 1.3.3 that causes schedules and some other things to not work properly! I stupidly got some logic reversed, and broke some things.

It is a quick and easy fix... I've already fixed the bug in the code.. but I do not have a compiler on my work computer, so I can't release an update until I get home! I'll be home in about 2 hours, and I'll release the new build ASAP!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Auto Respond 1.3.3

I said it would be quick, and it was.

I successfully added a "status" widget to Auto Respond, both Free and Pro. A lot of copy and pasting mainly, a few extra lines of code here and there, and bam: new widget. I hope you enjoy it!

As usual, the new version has been published, but may not be available for download for a couple of hours, due to delay on Google's servers.

More Suggestions

As I said recently... I love my users!

Someone just contacted me about something which, unfortunately, cannot be done the way that it was presented. The user wanted me to make it so that when Auto Respond is on, the icon on a home screen shortcut would be green, and when it's off the icon would be red. This icon cannot be changed dynamically like that (and if it can, I haven't figured out how to do it yet) because the icon is actually hard coded into the app.

The good news is, there is another way to go about getting this functionality - and that is to make another widget! This widget would be available to both free and paid users, as it would not have any functionality that bypasses ads. I am going to call it the "Auto Respond Status" widget.

Basically, it will look like the message widgets: an app icon and some text. In this case though, the text will always be "Auto Respond", and the icon is linked to the global status of Auto Respond, not the status of an individual message.

Clicking on this widget will simply open the app, just like a shortcut (dragging the icon from your app drawer to the home screen) would. But unlike that shortcut, the widget will show you whether or not the app is enabled by displaying a color coded icon.

I have not begun work on this widget yet, as I just received this request a few minutes ago. But I don't think this will take me a lot of time. Much of the code from the message widget can be reused for this one.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Auto Respond

A new version of Auto Respond has been pushed to the Play Store.

Change Log:
  • Updated to new SDKs
  • Added option to promote Auto Respond with a text signature
The new SDKs include Google Analytics, which has better support for exception/crash reporting (thankfully, because now I can hopefully get more info from those reports,) and other small SDK improvements, most of which I don't really care about.

Here are some screenshots of the new feature. As I mentioned, I made it all optional. Even added a "Preview" option, so that you can see what you message looks like with the signature added.

Everything is purple in these shots because I still have my purple theme applied. It will be blue if you have the default theme applied to your device.

The main option defaults off, for both versions, and the "Promote Pro" defaults on for both versions.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Love My Users!

Love You Guys!

I'm not sure if I've said this publicly before, and if I have I surely don't say it enough - I love the users of my apps!

Let me say that I originally developed Auto Respond as a tool that I, personally, had a need for. I decided that if I had a need for it, others surely will as well. That's why I shared it freely for a while on forums, then eventually went onto the Play Store.

Even though I was my own customer originally, the people who use my app are constantly helping me improve it. If I had nobody out there pushing me to improve things, it probably wouldn't get done. (Or at least, it would take a lot longer to accomplish.)

I am still the biggest critic of my own work. I always will be. I find a lot of bugs, crashes, typos, etc. before anyone else reports them. But I do love hearing from my users about possible additions, things that could possibly work better or differently, etc.


Having said all of that, a user came to me this morning with a painfully obvious suggestion. So obvious that I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I had never thought of it myself... promoting my app through a signature at the end of Auto Respond messages!

Now, I hope you all know by now that this is not something that I would force you into. That would alienate too many users. People don't always like to be used as a free advertising tool. Other people, however, like to show off the tools that they are using, and help other people discover those tools.

That's why I'm going to add this as an option to both the free and paid versions of Auto Respond. If you would like to tell others about Auto Respond, turn it on and spread the word. If you are in the group that finds that kind of thing intrusive, or don't like the idea for some other reason, then don't use it. It's entirely up to you.

Some Questions

I'm thinking about also possibly making the message customizable, and obviously a link to the Play Store would be added to the end of that message. The one thing I need to think about is which version should I link to? Should I always link to a specific one (always free or always pro) or should I link to the app that the person is currently using? I'm thinking of linking them all to the paid version, simply because I feel that the extra features are worth the minimal cost. Or should I make that link an option as well? Free or paid option...

I'm also debating whether or not the option should default on. I was thinking default on for free users, then you can turn it off if you don't want it on, and default off for paid users, and you can turn it on if you do want it. I'm afraid that defaulting it to on might still give people a negative feeling though.

What do you guys think? I've proposed a few questions here, and feedback would be appreciated! :-)