Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Upcoming exclusive free software schedule

Below I present an estimated schedule of upcoming software available here (free):

ProductFeaturesEstimated completion date
Vampire Castle 1.0 (Nintendo DS)First release of this gameLate August/early to mid September
Gesture Magic 1.1 (Windows)New built in gesture actions (e.g close window), better accessor keys, amongst other small improvements (this is a minor improvement release)September
A new Nintendo DS project (I can't reveal more until this goes into production - sorry, however this project has already been planned ahead)Includes wifi, mapping, video, some smooth jazz and advertising (NOT INTRUSIVE - trust me, this is a feature you'll enjoy :) )December/January (I'm looking for a Christmas Day release)
Aerofoil Extra 1.0 (Windows) Aerofoil versions 1.4.1/.2 have proven so popular I'm creating a "pro" version. Aerofoil 1.4, due to its designed simplicity and small size will become "Aerofoil Lite". At least this is the intention. Lets see how it goes...Subject to change - power managed hardware disabling, customisable process shutdowns on low power, XP compatibility, benchmarking and time estimates, task priority adjustments based on power mode, possibly written in C++ (not C# as per original).February/March 2009

P.S. Google Analytics tells me Silent Development has now hit a new peak of 170 hits in a day - so whoever the "silent" hoards are - thanks for making this blog so popular, I'll try and keep the content original and fresh! :)

The reason I don't book with Thomas Cook Signature -

I was just about to book my 3 day Christmas in New York when I found Thomas Cook's Signature website added nearly £1000 onto my final payment for no reason!

Seriously, I really wish I was this rich (and/or bad at maths) to afford thousands for a 3 day break in NYC - kudos to Thomas Cook for taking advantage of millionaires who have poor accountants.

You too can book your exclusive signature holiday here.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Gesture Magic's Criticism

Whilst software I give away on this site usually has praise (Aerofoil being a good example, LocateMe for its educational value, Optimizer for having been a best seller when it was sold) I've recently come across (my first piece!) some criticism of Gesture Magic. Bear in mind Gesture Magic was stated on here (due to time constraints) to be released with a limited feature set because it was better than sitting on my machine not getting used or not getting improved by third party developers, so I did expect some criticism.

What irks me is that the criticism was not constructive, it was left on a third party site and no feedback left for me here.

Even if the user cannot program, lack of simple etiquette to provide some useful feedback of the software on this site shows the lack of understanding of the open source process and how developers rely on feedback to improve the product. This is the cost of the product. You pay Microsoft with money, for open source for whom people who give their own time writing software for others, it's good practice to provide help or feedback. It's all about community, sharing and importantly goodwill.

To summarise my feedback on this issue, based on the intentional simplistic design of Gesture Magic, once I've finished the Nintendo DS game I'm working on, I intend to
- Improve accessor/modifier keys on Gesture Magic (find some other way to start the gesture drawing)
- Improve application starting (add start in directory option)
- Provide integrated default functions, such as minimise/maximise window, close Window, and search.
- Better help support
- Fix or improve some of the issues raised by users.

At least the user said Gesture Magic makes your desktop look like a video game, which was an intention all along :)

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Aerofoil receives more high praise, Vampire Castle on the way

Two news items today - have done a full page review of my tiny Aerofoil application - more praise! Thanks guys!

I'm also working on my first free Nintendo DS game, the first part in the series goes by the name "Vampire Castle". It's not moving as fast as I'd like because it's the second time I have ever used C++ since leaving university in 2000(!), and the graphics and sound are very time consuming for one person whose main tools are a pencil, scanner and GIMP!

I'm keeping this one under tight wraps for now, but it is progressing (first builds should be out in a couple of months - a realistic timescale) and hopefully it will be an award winner too.