Monthly Archives: September 2014

No texting while driving…in Espanol

Wow…this app taught me quite a bit!  I am not sure I am completely understanding how to put it all together from scratch on my own, but I am learning.

The purpose of this app was to create a way for drivers to hear a text from someone and send them a response letting them know that I am unavailable.  This message can change depending on why I need to stop receiving texts.  The user also receives my location as well.  I don’t know if I would ever use that component myself as it seems kinda creepy that someone could always find out where I am.  But, maybe that is just me. 🙂

I wanted to see how difficult it was to change languages.  I created a component to change the language of the text to speech to spa (I had to look up the three letter code for spanish).  I think this could be useful to help sell the app to users all over the world.  I started to create a menu of languages the user could choose from (in the form of buttons), but realized that would be too much work.  The GPS used was not completely accurate.  My street name was correct, but my house number was not.

I am learning!  I am starting the app developing unit with my kids next week and I am excited to see what they do!

QR Code:

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Mole Mash — aka Spartan Mash

Reflection:

As I reflect on the apps I create throughout this course, I am thinking of them both as an app developer for this course as well as a teacher.  I plan on teaching a little unit of app development in my Intro to Programming course so part of my thinking will be discussing that component.

The Mole Mash app asks the user to click on the mole.  When the user does so, a counter is added so he can see their score.  I learned how to create a counter by initializing both the misses and hits counter and then adding one when the object was hit or missed respectively.  I also learned how to do a countdown timer (by subtracting one).  At the end of the timer another screen (the game screen) was opened.  I couldn’t really figure out how to time it right.  It seems to go too quickly from the gunshot to the next screen.  I really wanted to end the game after the user had 10 misses, but that block of code did not work.  I tried an if/then/else loop stating if the misses counter = 10, then close screen else add one to the counter (if the spartan was missed only).   But, nothing seemed to happen.  Nothing closed and the spartan continued to move.

I wanted to add a more personal component on this app so I adapted it for our Homecoming game.  I changed the image sprite to a spartan and the background to a football field.  The idea behind it was that when you clicked the spartan you actually “tackled” him and the tiger roared.  I sent this on to our staff and for those who have Android devices, they were able to view it and enjoy it.  I have been researching ways to be able to take my App Inventor source code and adapt it for a Mac device (our school is very Mac oriented) but I could not find a way to do it.  There has to be some way as I see the same apps available for both platforms often.

I am starting to have many people in school ask me for apps!  I still have a lot to learn before I can conquer their requests, but I look forward to doing so.

spartan_mash

 

 

 

 

Paint Pot — App Creation 2

paintpot

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The basics:

In this app, we added on components from the first Hello Purr app.  Things we did in this app:

  • added buttons that changed the paint color of the canvas when clicked
  • added a canvas to draw lines and draw on top of existing images
  • implemented a camera object to allow the user to take a picture and use that image as the canvas background
  • used a wipe method to clear the screen of annotations
  • used a big dot and small dot button to change the size of the pixels

Add ons:

I added a couple of new components to this app.  They are:

  • added an introductory page with an image and a button
  • utilized multiple screens.  When the intro button was clicked, the canvas screen was activated.
  • added multiple color buttons

Things I tried, but did not work….

I tried to add a color palette for the user to choose from.  I couldn’t figure out how to save the color and then go back to the canvas page to use it to draw.  I tried to animate the text on the front page, but that did not work.

 

 

Slideshow of Multimedia Posters — Project 1

 

Hello Purr — App Creation 1

Basics

In this first app, I created a label for the app entitling it Pet the Kitty as instructed. We were asked the change the properties of this label (background and font color). We inserted a button and a cat image to serve as the button’s image. I stretched the label and image to center both items on the canvas. It distorts the image a bit which I don’t like, but overall it looks ok. I don’t like everything left justified. The goal was to have the cat meow and purr (phone vibrates) as if to emulate a cat being petted. We added a meow mp3 file and embedded that action within a block that asked the user to click on the cat. Once the cat was clicked, the cat meowed and the phone vibrated. There was also a block created that made the cat meow if the phone was shaken.

Things added…

As mentioned above, the label, image, button and text boxes were stretched to fit the canvas to appear centered. The second addition I made was to create a text to speech effect. When the button was pushed, the instructions from the text box were communication to the user in speech. I started to add more, but I realized it was better to take one step at a time. This is going to be fun!

The evolution of my app creation

I tend to be one to like to play around with a new tool.  I also tend to play around for hours on end.  Given I have a full time job, I did not allow myself to do that this time.  I am very excited to learn more and more about app development.  In this first exercise I learned about uploading and creating images, buttons, text to speech and labels.  I learned about designer view and blocks view.  It seems similar to software like Alice where the user becomes familiar about the concepts of coding, but has to do very little coding itself.  I am excited to apply this to use in my math classroom as well as in my Intro to Programming class!

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