As the name implies, Bug Tracker is a bug and issue tracking tool targeted at software developers. It is a standalone application, requiring no external server software. The app store is full of iOS clients for tools like Bugzilla, Jira, mantis, and FogBugz, but contains virtually no iOS-only issue trackers.
Around 44 hours or so, plus a chunk of time spent working on ios-queryable.
Review Time (time spent in the iOS app submission queue):
6 days. Thanks for the relatively speedy review, Apple! I think that was my fastest one so far.
New technologies I learned and used:
Aside from a heavy dose of Core Data, there wasn’t really anything particularly new here.
What went right:
- With Bug Tracker, I took a data-first approach – creating virtually the entire Core Data model before writing a line of code. I think that this helped narrow down the focus of the app and get straight to the point of what it really needed to do. Sometimes I find that starting with a UI (my usual approach) can lead down a never-ending road of ‘hey, I could add this feature here…’. Starting with the data and building the UI on top of it seemed work quite nicely.
- Normally, after developing an app primarily using the simulator, and the switching over to my iPod for testing, I find a number of issues or things that don’t quite work right. With Bug Tracker, everything was surprisingly usable from the start on the device, and I didn’t have to go back and rethink designs or change the UI.
What went wrong:
- Well, the fact that Core Data annoyed me so much that I had to write a library to make it suck less can’t be a good sign. But it did turn out to be a fairly useful tool.
- In terms of design – always a challenge – I found myself struggling with the limitations of UITabBarControllers.and UINavigationControllers. Although these form the backbone of navigation in most of my apps, I am starting to have second thoughts about their usability and the patterns of interaction that they demand.
- Finally, although the title of this blog is ‘App Per Month’, Bug Tracker’s development put a bit of a stop to the idea of monthly releases. For various reasons, including starting a challenging new job, I simply haven’t had as much time as I would’ve liked for iOS development. The result is that Bug Tracker’s 44 hours or so of development was spread out over a period of nearly 3 months.
The ‘stuff I want to do’ list is pretty long here, but a lot of it depends on what users want. I think iCloud support would be quite nice, for both backup purposes and cross-device usage. Saving of searches would be a great way to enhance the dashboard and the search capabilities. Icons for things like issue types and priorities, and UI enhancements in general, would also be nice. Oh, and a proper iPad version would be handy, too.
But really, it all depends on you, so if there’s something you would like to see in Bug Tracker, let me know!