After receiving a number of requests to port Squid’s Worm Calculator over from the iOS to the Android operating system (and others), I decided to take action. It took me a solid 24-hours of re-designing, recoding, and reworking the app, but it’s finally here:
NOTE: The Google Play Store has far less stringent submission requirements than iTunes. Despite the fact that I submitted #WormCalc to Apple days before I even began the Android port, the Android version is already available for download.
You will see differences in appearance between the iOS version and the Android version. I have kept the function and overall look as similar as possible. The simple fact is that Apple’s SDK is more intuitive, and gives coders greater control over aesthetics. I used the MIT App Inventor 2 software to make the Android port. While AI2 is an amazing product, it is very limited in a number of ways. I wanted to make a scrolling tabs navigation system, for instance, but in order to get the app out in a reasonable amount of time I had to just go with what I could do quickly. I will fix appearances in both versions with future updates. For now, I want the app "out there."
With that said, you can still count on #WormCalc to function as intended. Use it whenever you buy your biowaste or sell your worms to ensure that: 1) you aren’t losing money when you sell; 2) market prices settle into a reasonable margin. For now, both the iOS and Android versions are free to download and use. The iOS iteration includes monetized ads. AI2 does not support this, so instead I linked directly to my website at www.InkoftheSquid.net, which is monetized. If you download the app, I would love to hear from you there! Official support for #WormCalc will be handled through that site so you might as well bookmark it for future reference. ;-)
Plans for the Future
I both had a lot of fun and learned a ton about app development during this process. As I brought #WormCalc to market through iTunes Connect and the Google Play Dev Console, I was able to think of numerous improvements that could be made on the app for a v2.0. The ability to input the number of farms you have would be nice for large scale farmers, as would a toggle for those who buy their mats at a discount. Also, I have had a couple of requests for a Snuffles version of the calculator.
Soooo. Without making any concrete promises, I would like to announce that I intend to create a comprehensive version of the app, with more robust features and possibly even customizable themes, etc. If I do pursue this the goal would be to create an app that is useful for all farming situations, including Snuffles Sunflower Seed Farms and K&E Wheat farms and Iron Mines. It will require much work, and the decision to go for it or not will depend on how many downloads/installs I get for the free versions on each platform. This would be a premium app, and would not be free. Most likely I would sell it for the $.99-2.99 USD range.