Social media

Location based services- These are services that use your location to do many things such as Facebook places use it to tell your friends where you are like what shop or restaurant you are in. Some services help show you places you might want to go to like a leisure center or a restaurant and some of these services have a rating system so you can see what other people think about those places. These services can also reward regular customers which will encourage people to go back. These services could be useful for my app because I could think about a feature that shows you near by colleges.

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Facebook open graph- Open graph tells story’s by using a structured, strongly typed API. This is when people are talking about what they are doing, there will be a verb and a noun , such as “Liked”  “a comment”  or “watched” “a TV show”. For example it could say “John doe just watched the Simpsons” this can be split up into different parts.

1. The actor: This is the person who published the story (John Doe)

2.The app: This is the app that actually publishes the story on behalf of the actor, every story has what app was used mentioned in it.

3. The action: This is what the actor does (watched), there are other words that can be used such as read.

4. The object: This is what the actor has interacted with (the Simpsons) a TV show. These objects are publicly accessible web pages, almost any wen page can be an object.

There is also an option to make up your own action if you can’t find what you are looking for.All apps which use open graph must go through a review process first, to see if the stories they create are acceptable.

This could be another feature used in my app, whenever someone has enrolled it could say “John Doe has enrolled in Fife college”. It’s not the greatest idea but it’s worth a thought.

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Google cloud: “This is what makes Google Google: its physical network, its thousands of fiber miles, and those many thousands of servers that, in aggregate, add up to the mother of all clouds.” from

There are many reasons to use this, one of them is there are ways to help develop your application such as useful developer tools and Google will take care of things like data administration, server configuration, sharding and load balancing while you can focus on your code. You can also see and manage all of your applications from one console.Another reason is that it is it can handle large amounts of traffic but it also scales down so that you don’t have to pay for computer resources you are not using. There is also an app engine which allows you to focus on your code and at the same time you don’t have to worry about patching or maintenance.

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Google cloud could be helpful for making an app and I will consider it in the future.


Apps research


The first platforms for mobile devices that came along were palm OS ( now garnet OS), RIM Blackberry OS, the java platform became java micro edition (java ME), there was Binary Runtime Enviroment for Wireless (BREW) which was developed by Qualcomm and then there was the Symbian OS which was developed by Nokia,  Sony Ericsson, Motorola and Samsung. The Apple iPhone iOS came along in 2007 and Google’s android was a further year after that. These systems were among the first to fully utilize apps.

There are some important dates to know:

10 July 2008- App store was launched

22 October 2008- Android market went live

1 April 2009- Blackberry App World was launched

23 April 2009- 1 billionth iPhone app was downloaded

26 May 2009- Ovi Store was launched

30 July 2010- Blackberry App World reaches 1 million downloads per day

22 Jan 2011- 10 billionth iPhone app was downloaded

23 June 2011- Ovi Store reaches 6 million downloads per day

31 December- 20 billion apps were downloaded at App Store in 2012

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Current use

Today’s apps have a variety of different purposes, such as checking social media (example  Facebook and Twitter), maps (google maps), messaging (Wechat and Facebook messenger) and video sharing (YouTube) and there are many many more.

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Method distribution

There are many ways to distribute apps, it is mainly done through mobile operating systems whether it be the App Store, Google play, Windows Phone Store, etc.  It has been known that Apple’s iOS is a difficult platform to launch an app on as they have a difficult process, there is 5 stages, 1 Enroll in program, 2 develop & test, 3 create iTunes record, 4 submit app and finally release the app. The main point that makes it difficult is the review process as every app must be reviewed.  On the other hand, Android has been known to be more open and not as difficult but since android is more open that means there are more varied devices which means you will have to think about different screen sizes. This could be worth looking into since we will be designing our apps for android.

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Code/scripting language

There are many types of scripting languages such as, GUI scripting “These languages interact with the same graphic windows, menus, buttons, and so on that a human user would.”, extension/embeddable languages “A number of languages have been designed for the purpose of replacing application-specific scripting languages by being embeddable in application programs.”, application-specific languages “Many large application programs include an idiomatic scripting language tailored to the needs of the application user. Likewise, many computer game systems use a custom scripting language to express the programmed actions of non-player characters and the game environment.”

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Web based vs. Native applications

Web based applications

Here are some advantages to web based applications

-There is cross platform compatibility,  so you don’t need to worry about which operating system to choose

-Its more manageable, it is easier to update and maintain your app.

-It costs less

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-Internet connectivity is slower.

-Only simple interfaces.

-There are chances of your app being hacked which is very concerning.

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Native applications

Here are some advantages to native applications

-There interface is far better and are far more interactive.

-They can use mobile features such as GPS (something we could explore when designing our apps).

-They can use offline data storage but web based apps could be able to do this soon.

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-More expensive

-Getting noticed in the app marketplaces on mobiles will be difficult

-You will not have as much control over your app, for example Apple’s Mac app store has a strict approval system.

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Social impact

Apps have had a massive impact in society, they have changed the way we live our lives, we are now more socially connected than ever, we have access to things such as worldwide maps, GPS, world news 24/7, digital banking and we can even do some shopping. “The power of mobile apps is amazing. By innovating and disrupting patterns in our daily lives, mobile devices and apps have transformed the world we live in so dramatically that future generations will hardly be able to imagine how we ever existed without them.” Info from


Mobile devices research

Background & history– The first mobile was released to the public in 1982, not many people liked them due to their price and bulkiness but now they are common place. The first popular mobile phone to use apps was the iPhone. Development began on the iPhone in 2004, 1000 employees worked on this project. It was first unveiled to the public on January 2007 and was released in the USA in June 2007. It introduced people to the app store and since then almost every phone uses apps.

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How a cellular network works- A cellular network is a wireless network that is distributed over land areas called cells each of these cells are served by at least one fixed-location transceiver, which is known  as a cell site or a base station. Each cell uses a different set of frequencies from neighboring cells, to avoid interface and provide a guaranteed bandwidth within each cell.

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networking: There are many networks that mobiles use such as WiFi, 3G/4G and NFC. When making our app we will probably not have to think about 4G as few people have it but we would have to consider WiFi and 3G.

Current Hardware- There are many options when it comes to current hardware, here are some of the most current phones.

Nokia Lumia 720- Qualcomm 1GHz dual-core processor with 512MB of RAM.

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iPhone 5 s-  64-bit A7 processor

HTC One- Qualcomm Snapdragon 600, quad-core, 1.7GHz processor with 2GB DDR2 RAM.

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LG g3- 2 GB of RAM, qualcomm’s 2.26 GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800.

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Sony Xperia z1- 2 GB of RAM, Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processo, clock speed of 2.2 GHz and it is waterproof ( for a limited time).

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When thinking about our apps we should take the various screen sizes into consideration, I should think about how the app will adapt to the different screen sizes.

Current software and apps- The current operating systems that most mobile phones use are, apple’s IOS(current version IOS7), google’s android (current version kit-kat 4.3), microsoft’s windows OS (current version window phone 8.1) and finally blackberry’s blackberry OS (current version blackberry 10). There is a variety of apps available for these operating systems, some of which are exclusives to a specific operating system. The majority of apps are avilable for IOS, almost the same ammount for android, a lot less for windows and even fewer for blackberry. Some of the most popular apps across many different operating systems are Facebook, YouTube, Skype, Snapchat and games like angry birds star wars 2, infinity blade 2, plants vs zombies and candy crush saga.

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Impact on society- Mobile phones have effected our relationships “Mobile phones have altered our relationships with family, spouses and close friends. But while they seem to promise a wider social network, more than half of the average person’s calls and texts go to only four to six different people”, health “Mobile phones significantly help to maintain physical and psychological health when family members move away from home. And they enable women to maintain three roles within the household, simultaneously being wives, mothers and wage earners”, political participation “More mobile phone subscriptions are correlated with more democratic participation, less gender inequality and longer time spent in education. In all three areas, the impact of mobiles on social development indicators is stronger in developing countries” and economic growth “Mobile technologies contribute significantly to GDP growth, with a forecast range of between 1.8% in the UK and 24.9% in Egypt over the years 2010-2020, compared with today’s GDP. Again, the effects will be larger in developing countries”.

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New media- brief

The client is wanting someone to develop a prototype for a social media app to help students studying with the new college. They would like it to run on the android OS (as this is a very open platform compared to others) or as a web app optimized for a smartphone. There should be research that includes a comparison between two platforms with recommendations about implementation. It will include information on parts of the student experience such as classes, this could be info about there classmates and members of staff. Courses, which could include a timetable and any info on what is likely to be included in their course. Lessons, there could be info on each subject. Finally it could have their portfolio or even display their results. It should also be an effective marketing tool for the college that will help develop the new college brand.