Posts Tagged hear here
A bit more coding this weekend on ‘Hear Here’ my iPhone app that plays music by nearby artists. It is now feature complete. The list of features is rather small – it really is a ‘do one thing well’, kind of app. It plays music by the nearest artists that match your filter. You can filter currently by the popularity of the artist. If you are adventurous, you can listen to music by all nearby artists, but if you are not so brave you can just listen to music by mainstream or popular artists. The app shows you how far away the ‘now playing’ artist is and shows you how many artists are within a 25 mile radius. All music is streamed from Rdio and of course you’ll need an Rdio subscription to hear full streams. I made my own icon – it is pretty ugly – if you have design skills and want to contribute a logo I’d be very pleased to use it. Here’s a video of the app in action for a user who happens to be in Cupertino:
Next steps for the app are lots of testing, especially with poor network connectivity. After that, I’ll make sure I’m following all the rules for Rdio and Apple – and once I’m conforming to all the TOS’s and UI guidelines I’ll submit it to the App Store (as a free app).
More weekend programming on ‘Hear Here’ the mobile version of the Road Trip mixtape. I’ve added a familiarity filter so you can chose whether you want to listen to only the most recognizable artists in a region, or you want to listen to everything. Screenshots:
I’ve taken the app on a few road tests. There were a few crashes (of the app kind, not the car kind, luckily). Stability and responsiveness with unreliable networking is a fun challenge. I’m taking a 1000 mile roadtrip in a week or two, hopefully will have it 100% ready by then.
My weekend programming project was to build a bare-bones version of Roadtrip Mixtape that runs on an iPhone. This is an MVP (a term I learned from my Product Management buddies at work) – with only 5 basic features:
- You can press ‘next’ and the app plays a song by the nearest band to where you are right now.
- You can press ‘pause’ to pause/resume the playing
- You can login to Rdio so you can listen to full streams
- You can look at the album art
- You can simulate moving to another location (I was getting sick of listening to just Nashua music).
This is the first significant bit of iOS programming that I’ve done. It is a lot of fun. Xcode has tons of features that make working with all the idiosyncrasies of the platform manageable. There’s a huge amount of documentation including many tutorials, examples and recorded WWDC talks, plus tons more info on Stack Overflow. To stream music I’m using the Rdio iOS SDK. It is very easy to use, very well documented, with lots of good examples. I thought that getting music to play was going to be the hard bit of this project, but it was actually really easy. Well done Rdio programmers!
Tomorrow I’ll take V0.1 on its maiden test drive on my commute to work to see how well it works on the road. I suspect that the playlists will not be the most listenable since they are often filled with very long tail artists. On the list for V.2 will be the ability to add popularity and style filters to make it more likely that music that I actually like appears in the playlist.
Oh and I came up with a new working title for the app = ‘Hear Here’. Not sure if I’m 100% on board with the name though. No one likes puns anymore.