Anyone reading this blog (and I can't imagine that's many people) will have noticed a distinct lack of updates. This is mostly due to the fact that I've been so busy at work lately that I haven't had any time to work on any for-fun programming projects. Handy Japanese has been downloaded thousands of times on Windows Phone, with very few crash reports or support requests so I'm happy enough with the results. I was looking into porting the SNES emulator Higan to Android, but gave up due to lack of time and the fact that Retroarch offers a version of the same code (that's not as accurate), which is good enough for most things.
If I do get some time I'm interested in trying out mobile game development, we'll see if I that goes anywhere.
I've been meaning to release a native version of Handy Japanese for Windows Phone 8. While it's not actually much work for me to recompile the application for Windows Phone 8, I've been consumed with a web design project for the last few months and I haven't had time.
Now that project is completed I've recompiled the application for Windows Phone 8 and both versions should be available in the next week or so.
Update! Full version is available now, Lite will be available in about a week.
I haven't posted here for quite a while. I've been very busy with a personal project, as well as work on a new web application that one of my clients will be marketing for sale shortly.
I'm thinking of starting off a new project but I'm not quite sure what direction I will head in. Stay tuned and find out.
I'm now expanding the line of Handy Japanese products to include a free ad-supported version. Handy Japanese Lite will be available on the marketplace shortly and will offer the same great functionality as the full version, but with in-app advertising.
Starting later this week version 2.6 of Handy Japanese will be available in the Marketplace. This version includes a new trial mode that supports all the features of the full version, but with integrated advertising. This will not effect any current owners of the software, you will never see any ads.
Since the beginning, the trial mode experience hasn't been what I wanted to provide. I wasn't able to limit access in the way that I initially wanted and have been planning for a long time to switch to an ad-supported model. In November of last year Microsoft opened up their advertising platform to Canada (where I am based) so it's just been up to me to find the time in my busy schedule to implement it. I've had a lot of contract jobs lately that have needed my attention but I've now completed work on the ad-supported version.
Hopefully this means more satisfied customers and more profit for me (let's not kid about this, if I could afford to live off apps I would).
I've moved this site to a BlogEngine.NET and ported all of the content over from DotNetNuke. DotNetNuke is a useful system but I wasn't really taking advantage of all it's features and it's a very complex system that requires a lot of processing power. BlogEngine.NET provides all the functionality I need and it performs a lot better.
I haven't had much time to work on side projects lately. Between my day job and contract work I've been very busy. I'm still working on a few new app items and I'm toying with an ad supported version of Handy Japanese. I'll update the website whenever I have time to get anything done.
I've now submitted an update to Handy Japanese for Windows Phone (2.5). This update fixes an issue that causes crashes in a specific isolated circumstance. It does not contain any feature changes. It should be available in a few days.
I will soon be releasing version 2.4 of Handy Japanese for Windows Phone. 2.4 adds support for Windows Phone 7.5's multitasking and improved interface performance. 2.4 will only be available for 7.5 as there are no additional changes but should I release a new version I will update the Windows Phone 7.0 version.
To coincide with the launch of Handy Japanese in Japan I'm going to be lowering the price. I still hold a glimmer of hope of recouping development costs so I'm hoping that this will more than double my sales (which is probably overly optimistic). Thanks to everyone who has already purchased the app.
I'm currently debating releasing another app for Windows Phone, that I'm developing for my own use. It's a lot of extra work testing and preparing an app for public release so it depends on how Handy Japanese sells if I will make the effort.
I've been hard at work polishing up Handy Japanese for the Japanese launch of Windows Phone 7. I've tested the built in Japanese keyboard support extensively and it's led me to make some improvements in dictionary searches by Kanji characters.Version 2.3 comes with the following new/updated features:
- Miscellaneous notes text is now a more visible/less ugly colour (orange instead of brown)
- New algorithm for searching dictionary by Kanji, produces more and better results when searching for a portion of a word.
- Updated dictionary and embedded fonts
- Modified radical and stroke pickers that don't cut off part of the letters.
- Improved scrolling performance, particularly in Windows Phone 7.5
- Fixed Issues with parts of the interface occasionally disappearing when running under Windows Phone 7.5
- Corrected an issue that might cause some Kanji details to not display on some handsets and in very rare cases cause crashes.