You can download JamSnap from the App Store. It’s free! There’s lots of features that we’re working on that are coming soon!
The first few seconds when you hold a beta of an app you’ve been working on in your hand, is this awesome feeling of delight, mixed with a little bit of narcissism (ya, I did that). The next several seconds, you start to notice all the tiny designery things that the developer didn’t get quiiiiite right. Move this up 5px, change that font to bold, add a 1px stroke around that box, etc. The developer I work with calls it having a “Jenni Session,” where we sit down together and tweak all the tiny visual things that are bothering me. I’m glad that he cares enough to let me do that, but it would save so much time if I could just do it myself.
I’ve heard about designers that work in Xcode with their developers, and I’ve tried taking a tutorial or two to get more familiar with it. I’ve been surrounded by developers all my life, a developer father, brother and now a developer husband. I often joke that I feel like a kid that grew up with code as a second language; where I can read and understand code but can’t write it myself except for some basic things. Sometimes I kick myself for being so stubborn on NOT trying to learn code when I had so many opportunities growing up, but I was insistent on being the artsy one in my family and didn’t want to be like them. I’m still a bit stubborn, but I know it would be smart for me to be more involved.
Then I saw a post on Medium from Julius Tarng, the designer at Potluck. The title itself pulled me in, “Designers: you can Objective-C, too! How you can help your iOS engineer by getting into production storyboards and Objective-C — if they let you.” This looked exactly what I was looking for. A way to get more involved with the pixel perfection in Xcode, but doing minimal damage to the actual code.
There’s a couple of things with storyboards that didn’t make sense in my design mind: The Navigation Controller is screen-shaped, looks exactly-like-but-sits-in-front-of the View Controller (the screen you’re actually mocking up), but you can’t put any visuals on it. But if you want to apply certain characteristics to that screen, it has to be applied to the Navigation Controller, not the View Controller. Or how you can easily tell a screen to respond as a modal, yet there’s not an equally as easy way to make a close button to get out of that modal. For anyone that wants a good hint at making that close button, check out my friend, Bryan Clark’s, stuff on Github that he put together to help me with this. Go Fork with it. heh.
Just a day or so later, Meng To wrote another equally helpful article, “Learning Xcode 5 As a Designer,” that went a little bit deeper on Storyboards through a tutorial with files attached so you could mess around with it yourself and see how it was built. By the end of the day I had my own working prototype in Xcode. I rebuilt some existing screens of my job’s current app since I already had the layout and slices done. It’s pretty easy to figure out the basics of Storyboards and feels a little bit like keynote. The best part was, I didn’t get least bit frustrated, I was actually getting kinda giddy. That same excitement of seeing something that I actually built, in my hand.
There were a couple of things I got stuck on, but I just went back and forth between the two articles and found some other things online. The dev at work was more than happy to help explain things to me, and was even more excited at the idea of working like this on the future iteration of the app.
Later in the week, Meng To released another article/tutorial with attached file examples about his new product, Canvas, which allow you to animate in Xcode without code. This is what I’m playing with now, but I haven’t quite mastered it yet.
So anyone that is a mobile designer, I encourage to you at least play with the tutorials that Meng provided. It feels good to learn something new and it might actually help you understand what you’re making a little better.
The layout of the tutorial-
Part 1 Getting Started-
All the key features that you’ll need to know in order to get animation out of Photoshop. These include an introduction to the animation timeline as well as the steps you can follow to export your animation.
Part 2 Clean-up, Colour and Creating Actions.
A step by step walk through for creating some the actions that will help you speed up your animation workflow – including creating colour layers, effective bucket filling and creating your next frame.
Part 3 Extra Tips and Tricks-
A few extra tips and tricks to help you get started animating in Photoshop. These include using preexisting videos in your animation, better manipulating the timeline and how to export gifs from Photoshop.
Glenn invited Alli and I on a podcast to talk about how XOXO inspired us, how we got to San Francisco, playing Cards Against Humanity with Glenn, App.net and how we manage a full time job with our various side projects. Whew, we talk alot.
The Labors of Job with Alli Dryer and Jenni Leder (Episode 50)
I really admire these fashionable older women.
By Director: Sue Bourne.
A new TV documentary on Britain’s BBC4 has been tickling people’s fancies across the pond and stateside. “Fabulous Fashionistas” features six women of advanced years who share a love for style and a “screw that” attitude to the standard dictates of age.
(via: Senior Planet)
GluePrint is a mac app that allows you to simply drop a mockup and overlay the image on top of your work to see how it compares. Position with the arrow keys and scroll to adjust the transparency. Pretty sweet for only $5.
It starts with a dull throbbing headache that makes my head feel heavy and my eyes strained. Then a cold sweat runs over my body. A twinge of nausea hits my stomach, clenches my throat, threatening to worsen if I continue exposing myself to this THING. This THING that has been attached to my hand as if I have a cybernetic removable appendage with ok battery life, that allows me to interact with the world made up by a series of tubes.
I just updated my phone to iOS 7 the day before I left to Portland for XOXO. Then after heavy use from traveling, using the maps to get around, instagramming my surroundings, I started feeling it. I took some advil not giving it a second thought. By day two I figured it out. My iPhone was causing this and there was no way to turn this off.
No this is not a rant about the look of iOS 7, but the inability to turn off the animated zoom interaction as you go into your folders, open an app, multi-task through screens into another app. I have motion sickness and I guess no one else in the Apple team had this condition. Yes, you can turn off parallax in the accessibility. It’s not the parallax that is causing it, it’s the zooming. After seeing an article on App.net, I realized I wasn’t alone. I also found other people were complaining on the Apple’s Forums.
As much as Apple is praised for its accessibility options, there are other people out there that are motion challenged. We can’t play first person shooters, watch 3D movies (or even sit to close to the screen during heavy action movies). I can’t use Google street view, or ride on small boats. I do everything in my power to avoid this feeling cause it’s something that can just ruin my entire day. The nausea just sticks with me as soon as it happens. When it’s really bad, I won’t go into detail, but it can get ugly.
This is pretty serious. I’m an app designer, I use the iPhone for my job. I’ve resorted to closing my eyes, turning my head or covering my hand over the screen between every zoom in/out animation for iOS 7 so I don’t have to pop advil every day (which is totally not healthy). I can’t keep going like this, something has to change. Apple, are you listening?
*UPDATE: I was told from a friend that it’s good to file a radar for things like this. So if you have this same problem, file a report here: bugreport.apple.com and use this number so it duplicated: 15074144