Rails Rumble: Micro-App Competition Winners Announced

first_imgSo, that’s what the expert panel of judges and hordes of Rail-loving masses deigned the cream of the crop this year. What’s your take; do any of these apps inspire or excite you? Second Place: How’s My Code?How’s My Code is a peer review tool for developers to comment on, approve of, and flag commits. Email notifications allow users to come back to ongoing discussions. If you spend more time on GitHub than Facebook, this might be an app for you to check out.Here’s a screencast explaining the app:Third Place: TablesurfingUsing Facebook Connect, the Tablesurfing team created an app for those who are into impromptu dinner parties. “Like couchsurfing, but for tables,” Tablesurfing connects users who like to cook with users who are comfortable dining in the homes of strangers (i.e., the adventurous and hungry.) Of course, the concept is replete with issues (necessary critical mass of user adoption, sketch factor of inviting those weird “Internet people” into your home), but it’s a sweet idea with a nice UI.Check out the demo video here:Appearance Category Winner: LowdownLowdown (currently offline for post-Rumble revamping) is/was a drop-dead gorgeous task/project management tool for working with Cucumber. As the development team wrote, ‘If Cucumber lets us ‘describe how software should behave in plain text… in a business-readable domain-specific language’ then Lowdown is the tea party where thinly sliced sandwiches are served on nice platters instead of trying to swallow it whole.’ Full-featured and flexible, it was one of several related apps in the Rumble yet stood out for its pristine user interface that was a breeze to understand and use and a pleasure to look at. We look forward to playing around with the app more once it relaunches.Take a look at this demo in the meantime:Usefulness Category Winner: ZenVDN“Talk about ambitious – building a video delivery network for the Rumble is crazy!” So wrote expert and Viget Labs technology director Ben Scofield of ZenVDN. Perhaps the nature and scope of the project isn’t such a surprise when one considers that the team behind this project also constructed web video apps ZenCoder and Flix Cloud. Ambitious or not, the site is good-looking and designed for simplicity. ZenVDN encodes videos for the web and mobile devices, allows for HD resolution and embedding, and makes use of a global content delivery network. Truth be told, as it must be on a tech news blog, we were unsuccessful in our attempts to upload a video to our profile, and ironically, the app’s demo video was not embeddable.UPDATE: ZenVDN just emailed us this embeddable version of their demo:There’s something to be said for constructing a full-fledged application in 48 hours. There’s something else to be said for naming said application in such a way that conjures only the fondest memories of Dana Carvey in a platinum wig. Simply put, “Hurl makes HTTP requests. Enter a URL, set some headers, then view the response. Perfect for APIs.” Hurl comes from Pownce founder/Six Apart engineer Leah Culver and Chris Wanstrath and will officially launch soon.Completeness Category Winner: hurlCheck out the screencast for a demo:Innovation Category Winner: LAZEROIDS!!!This team built a neverending, massively mutliplayer, peer-to-peer version of Asteroids with sound design that had commenters raving (pew! pew!). LAZEROIDS!!! (sic) was moreover developed with complete disregard for IE support. Still, experts and commenters alike were impressed with the execution and simplicity of this app. You can check out the team’s blog for information on the architecture, or you can just go play the game. Solo Category Winner: AlertMe.tvOne is the loneliest number, and special consideration was given to the developers who chose to fly solo in this competition. One of our favorite apps – a well-designed, useful tool – was AlertMe.tv, a simple system for users’ opting in to notifications about their favorite TV shows. Email, SMS, or IM notifications are sent when new episodes are about to air. Adding new shows to the site’s database is also particularly simple. As someone who needs to be reminded when Saturday Night Live airs, I particularly appreciate this app. Congratulations to Jacques Crocker, the Rails Jedi of Silicon Valley. Couch potatoes the world around salute you. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Microapp#start jolie odell 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting In 48 hours last weekend, 237 developer teams competed and generated a total of 137 qualifying web applications, all developed with Ruby and Rails on the back end.The 2009 Rails Rumble was, according to organizers, the strongest yet in the contest’s history. (Disclosure: I was on the “expert panel” of judges for the Rumble and got a sneak peak at a significant handful of apps.)As microapps (as this particular brand of simple, single-function sites and widgets could be called) occupy an ever-increasing tract of Internet real estate, time-crunch events such as Startup Weekend and Rails Rumble serve as tests of skill and team-building challenges, not to mention endurance competitions as developers burn through hour after sleepless hour. Yet with each cycle, these events do produce a number of noteworthy apps that might grow into something more in the weeks and months to follow while teaching all developers valuable lessons about simplicity in interface design. Here’s a quick breakdown of the eight winning Rails Rumble applications.First Place: Hi.ImHi I’m is (yet another) service that aggregates a user‘s social streams to a centralized location, sort of like Retaggr, Chi.mp, and their ilk. The idea wasn’t the most innovative, as many of the 80 comments on this project noted, but the user experience was as simple as following the yellow brick road. The app was developed by San Jose-based web/mobile development shop Koombea. Related Posts last_img read more

More Resources for Mobile Design Inspiration

first_imgNot too long ago, we highlighted a new website for mobile design inspiration called Mobile-Patterns.com. The site, created by Foursquare’s lead designer Mari Sheibley, is meant to serve as a home to mobile screenshots showcasing various UI elements, including sign-up flows, splash screens, comment boxes and more.However, Mobile-Patterns isn’t the only site of its kind. Thanks to ReadWriteMobile commenters and others for listing more resources deserving a mention. We’ve rounded these up below.While not necessarily new, the sites below can also serve as valuable resources for mobile designers in need of inspiration.To begin, a popular site called pttrns is a resource for iOS designers. It offers a larger selection of screenshots than Sheibley’s new site – in fact, there are over 30 categories of screenshots hosted there. In addition, as a commenter noted, you can view the samples at both 1x and 2x (retina) size. Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces sarah perez Finally, one of our favorites comes from Chris of Mobile GUI who let us know about MobileGUI.net/inspiration. There, you’ll find a complete list of mobile design galleries which is kept up-to-date as new ones arise. Currently, the list includes Android Patterns, App Sites, CSS iPhone, dribble, ember, FWA Mobile Gallery, iOS Inspires Me, iOSpirations, jQuery Mobile Gallery, Landing Pad, Make Better Apps, Mobile Awesomeness, Mobile UI Patterns, Moobile Frames, pttrns, Refined Mobile, TapFancy and TappGala. Tags:#apps#mobile The MobileGUI website also hosts a number of other resources, tools and tips for both mobile app developers and designers alike. Definitely worth a bookmark!Know of more? Let us know, we’ll keep this list going.Lead photo credit: http://www.matthewbigelow.com/ via weeble.net Another commenter, Geoff Gauchet, shared the resource he created for mobile app patterns, specifically meant for webOS developers: http://webospatterns.zhephree.com. Related Posts Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technologylast_img read more

Four-leaf Clover and 4-H

first_imgThe four-leaf clover is a rare variation of the common three-leaf clover and is said to bring good luck when finding one.Since four-leaf clovers will be seen across the nation tomorrow on St. Patrick’s Day, we thought we would talk about the four-leaf clover becoming the emblem for the 4-H logo and its representation.Designed by O. H. Benson, superintendent of Wright County (Iowa) schools, the 4-H emblem was approved in 1911 at a meeting of club leaders in Washington, D.C.The 4-H emblem is one of the most  highly recognized  logos in the world. Along with the U.S. Presidential Seal, and Smokey Bear, this green four-leaf clover with a white H on each leaf,  is placed in an unique category of protected emblems.The H’s signify Head, Heart, Hands and Health.At 4-H club meetings and events, members recite the Pledge of Allegiance and this 4-H pledge:I pledge my HEAD to clearer thinking,my HEART to greater loyalty,my HANDS to larger service,and my HEALTH to better living, for my club, my community, my country, and my world.last_img read more

PDP hails Rajnath’s offer of talks with Hurriyat

first_imgThe ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday described Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s offer of fresh dialogue with stakeholders as “a golden opportunity for the Hurriyat.”“The Hurriyat and Pakistan should respond positively to the offer of talks on Kashmir. It’s high time for the Hurriyat to initiate a result-oriented and meaningful dialogue with the Government of India,” said PDP general secretary Mansoor Hussain Sohrawardhy.Ready for dialogueIn an interview to a New Delhi-based channel, Mr. Singh said, “If Hurriyat is ready to talk, we have no problem, we are ready to talk to anyone. Even if Pakistan comes for a dialogue, we are ready for it.”The PDP leader said the State government had taken a series of confidence and peace-building measures to put a lid on the violence and bloodshed and that “more [measures] could be taken in the future.” “The ball is in the Hurriyat’s court now. The onus also lies on Pakistan to hold dialogue with India and stop painting the borders and the LoC in Kashmir red,” said Mr. Sohrawardhy.Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq maintained that the Hurriyat leadership would “extend its full support to every serious effort aimed at resolving the Kashmir [issue] so that peace prevails and bloodshed stops”. “It’s long overdue that India and Pakistan allow the leadership of the two divided parts of Kashmir to meet with each other and decide on their future course of action regarding their destiny. Such a step is of utmost importance,” said the Mirwaiz.Meanwhile, separatists forum Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) leader Yasin Malik, also JKLF chief, held a sit-in protest in Srinagar to demand release of all political prisoners.“We demand the immediate release of all prisoners, including Masarat Aalam, Qasim Faktoo, Asiya Andrabi and others,” said Mr. Malik.last_img read more