My second (personal) iPhone app, C10CK, is now available in the App Store. It is a clock which displays time using binary notation – the same way everything is (eventually) stored in a digital computer. I’ve been using a binary clock since a staff member of ITP passed this past year and several alumni recalled stories of the binary clock she kept on her desk and would happily explain to anyone who asked. I now keep a binary clock on my desk and think of her when people ask me what it is.
This app started as a small pet project to work out a simple algorithm for visualizing bit values for integers. Shortly after that was working I added a special learning mode to help me remember the bit values. Eventually, it became an excuse to really play with new features in iOS 4 (gesture recognizers, block based animation, Grand Central Dispatch). I also enjoyed the opportunity to design an app from scratch after nearly a year of deep Cocoa immersion on some rather complex projects at work (I *finally* understand Key-Value-Observing).
It also was a chance for me to make a universal iPhone / iPod touch and iPad app. It wasn’t so hard to code to take advantage of affordances offered by the larger screen (though, the differences in this app are rather simple). This is also my first (personal) paid app. Many of my reasons have been realized and stated far more eloquently than I could describe – to put it briefly, there is value in my work. A few dollars is mostly a token, but it’s recognition of the time and study which is needed to create something noteworthy. I’ve put in much effort here, even for such a simple app, to design a pleasant visual and user experience with many bits of polish. The audience for this app is limited to be sure (and there’s hefty competition in the app store) but buying the app is a sign of respect for fine craft, and hopefully something the purchaser finds useful, enjoyable or rewarding – it is a clock, after all.