Lesson 1 - Playground Basics

List of five to ten apps you use regularly. What made you download it in the first place? What need does it meet? ​Write down the problem you think each app solves. What is its purpose?

1) WhatsApp : In order to make easier to talk to family members, friends and classmates by doing group chats; it meets the need of online communication and solves its difficulties by making it more approachable and easier to communicate internationally.

2) Instagram : Downloaded due to the popularity of the application, because it meets the need of uploading a picture to your profile for your followers. In my perspective, it helps to make connections with people from different parts of the world by seeing their photos / videos who see the world in interesting ways; also the point is to get followers, by they liking your pictures.

3) Snapchat : Downloaded also by the popularity of the app, after a while I understood how the app worked and I may say that is quite an addiction. The point of this app is to upload moments (10s) from your daily life and after 24h it's erased. It meets the need of uploading something cool that happened on your day but you don't have to necessarily upload to (ex.) Instagram.

4) Facebook : I downloaded due to the easiness of sending and communicating with other classmates for school works (:). It meets the need of communicating constantly with long-distance people and family. The purpose of Facebook is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.

5) Twitter : This app was practically the first social media I got; I downloaded it because I wanted to "keep in touch" with my favourite artists and see what they posted. Nowadays, I can see how people use Twitter for "expressing openly" towards someone or something (which I think it has its pros & cons). Twitter's main purpose is to communicate with friends, follow people of interest and share your views, and also to be a source of up to date.

6) Spotify : I gotta say that I didn't like Spotify for a long period of time, until now (last months of 3rd semester). Spotify is an app that provides a service, the service of music. It solves the problem of paying constantly for listening to music, it's accesible due to their several plans they provide (Classic or Premium).

Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram (old logo), Facebook, WhatsApp

Lesson 2 - Naming and Identifiers

Brainstorm for apps you want to make.

Long-battery app: In order to defend the battery of your Smartphone with several tools that would help your cellphone to optimize
App for learning: For those people that want to learn a new language at home.
App for musicians: In case your in rush, the app would be able to show the chords and tabs for a song without getting a subscription!
Fashion at one click: Getting free discounts, promotions, notifications of new clothing lines from your favorite stores!
App for singers: In case your having a reunion, a karaoke app would be your life savior with no need of subscription/payment!
App for SmartTV: It'll be easier for a person to just display keyboard on their phone, or search it and display it on their TV

Lesson 3 - Strings

Activity 3

Identify a few key audiences on your list from "Idea Storm"

  • Long-battery app: People that use its technological device for work, school.
  • App for learning: Mainly students from middle-school to high-school; also, adults that require another language for their job.
  • App for musicians: From kids to young adults, musicians do not have an specified audience.
  • Fashion at one click: Mainly women that they're habit is to shop.
  • App for singers: Mainly teens and young adults.
  • App for Smart-TV: For people that own a SmartTV like young &older adults.

Lesson 4 - Hello, world!

Activity 4

Rank them (1-10) in terms of their UI design. Write down the reasons that some apps are easier to use than others.

WhatsApp: 10
Instagram: 10
Snapchat: 10
Facebook: 10
Twitter: 10
Spotify: 9

Not for any reason these are the apps most downloaded / popular worldwide. These apps are easier to use than others due to their dynamism and easiness to use. Every user seems to know what a button stands for even though it's their first time using the app. In Spotify I ranked it with a 9, due to a lack of visual attraction.

Lesson 5 - First App

Act 5

For those standout ideas, what problem or purpose does each of them address & solves? Will your app be disruptive?

Long-battery app: It solves the problem of losing a device's battery due to having lots of apps opened and using them and the same time. It would be disruptive because it would change the way a device works and helps these audience to preserve their battery.

App for learning: It solves the problem of people that isn't able to go to a learning school physically, and learn the language wanted at home. It would a disruptive app due to easiness of learning.

App for musicians: It solves the problem of people learning to play an instrument and getting the chords / tab of songs that they like, whenever they want. It'd be a disruptive app due to the easiness of getting the songs' chords and not going to a facility to learn them.

Fashion at one click: It solves the problem of people not being able to shop due to their lack of time; being at the same time a disruptive app due to the difference of seeing the way of shopping and getting a personal-time satisfaction.

App for singers: It would solve the problem of getting a jukebox physically and getting the songs in karaoke in a fast and easy way. It would be disruptive technology because it would revolutionize the way karaoke is done.

App for Smart-TV: It would solve the problem of faster-writing and searching on a Smart-TV by just displaying it on your phone.

Lesson 6 - Functions

Act 6

Define your app in terms of the problem it will address. How exactly will your app fulfill its goal?

Long-battery app
  • App name: Juicy timing
  • Problem: Losing a device's battery due to having lots of apps opened and using them and the same time.
  • My app will help people to defend the battery of their Smartphone with several tools because their cellphone's battery runs out quickly.
App for learning
  • App name: Language Learning
  • Problem: For those people that want to learn a new language and isn't able to go to a language facility
  • My app will help students & adults to learn a new language because they're not able to go to a school.
App for musicians
  • App name: Tab on the go
  • Problem: People learning to play an instrument and getting the chords / tab of songs that they like, whenever they want.
  • My app will help musicians by showing the chords and tabs of a song because they're not able to get it by listening to it.
Fashion at one click
  • App name: Fashion Scope
  • Problem: people not being able to shop due to their lack of time
  • My app will help people to have a time for themselves and shop because they're not able to due to their lack of time
App for singers
  • App name: Jukebox play
  • Problem: getting a jukebox physically and getting the songs in karaoke in a fast and easy way.
  • My app will help reunion's hosts because it would get songs in karaoke in a fast and easy way.
App for Smart-TV
  • App name: Smart App
  • Problem: people tend to take a lot of time while writing on the Smart-TV keyboard
  • My app will help Smart-TV's owners to write faster and searching on their TV because it would just need to display it on their phone.

Lesson 7 - BoogieBot

Brainstorm about how you might use these features and tools in your app.

1. Long-battery app:

  • Accelerometer: by checking if the device is moving and assess when to reduce an app's data, usage, brightness, among other features

2. App for learning:

  • GPS: to see where does the app has more impact on, and to provide a better teaching depending on geographically data (ex. choosing whether to learn french of France, Canada or Switzerland)
  • Touchscreen: to provide learners with different options to answer by dragging, matching, among other examples)

3. App for musicians:

  • Bluetooth: to download and/or share the tab with another bandmate for example)

4. Fashion at one click:

  • GPS: to give a better service and provide the discounts & promotions depending on the zone the shopper is
  • Touchscreen: to drag / take out items to the shopper's cart
  • Scene-kit: to show the chosen item in a 3D mode

5. App for singers:

  • Bluetooth: in order to display the lyrics on a TV, projector

6. App for Smart-TV:

  • Touchscreen: helping the user to select something from their phone in case of a presentation, among other scenarios
  • Bluetooth: to display the search or other features on the TV.

Lesson 8 - Constants & Variables

Act 8

Idea storm of features

  • Handoff feature: this can be incorporated on the App for Learning and App for Singers, because if there's a set back while using the apps, it won't be a problem as the user would be able to resume its app activities instead of starting all over again.
  • HealthKit: this feature would be useful in the App for Singers by warning the user if they´re forcing too much their voice; and for the Fashion at one click, by warning first the user before buying products (to prevent mismanagement of the user's finance)
  • Bluetooth: As explained before, this feature would be applied in the App for Learning, App for Singers and App for Smart-TV (previous lesson)
  • SceneKit: Also as said previously, this feature would be useful in the Fashion at one click app, for displaying the product in a 3D version.
  • Camera: This app feature may be applied on the App for Learning, in order to practice a language by talking to people that are also subscripted on the app; and in the App for Musicians & App for Singers to play songs and sing with people that share the same tastes as the user.
  • Security: This feature would be included in every app, but especially the ones explained on the camera feature due to the exposure the user has. This will provide the user security by doing a previous study of the person contacted and with several options to choose how was the contact experienced.
  • Offline work: This feature might be included in every single app, but especially the App for Learning, App for Musicians, Fashion at one click, App for Singers and App for Smart-TV for several activities done on the app. This will be a competitive edge over competitors and increase popularity of the app.
  • Feedback & Customize options: Regarding personalization of the app's layout, updates and to give feedback for any modification needed to be done.
  • Microphone: This feature would be included in the App for Learning for several exercises, App for Musicians by the user playing its instrument and the app following on the part the user's playing, in the App for Singers when the user is singing, and in the App for Smart-TV for those who are in a rush and just spell the word or searching wanted to the app.
App features

Lesson 9 - Types

Do your app ideas already exist?

  1. Long-battery app: Top competitors: Battery Amperage (no reviews), Fruit Juice (no reviews). Due to the lack of reviews of the competitive apps, my app would differentiate by closing several apps that would affect the battery's life and the cellphone's performance; also it would adjust the brightness depending on the light of the room, and would quit the internet & bluetooth features depending on the phone's functioning.
  2. App for learning: Star languages (no reviews), Aprender lenguas extranjeras (no reviews, for kids & adults), Centro de Idiomas (cost, predominates 5 stars, no reviews). Due to the lack of reviews but with the validation of 5 stars of the last app, I would create my app similar as the Centro de Idiomas app but include several features including offline work and customize features, to make it more unique and appealing to the customer.
  3. App for musicians: Presto Band Guitar & Piano (cost, no reviews), Anytune (very expensive, no reviews). As explained before, there's a lack of reviews of customers; but seen on the previews of the app, it stands the fact that any app provides the service I am trying to offer. My app will help people to learn to play an instrument, getting the chords / tab of songs that they like, whenever they want.
  4. Fashion at one click: No competitive apps. My app will differentiate by free discounts, promotions, notifications of new clothing lines from the client's favorite stores. All in one!
  5. App for singers: Red karaoke (cost, no updated songs; here clients are commenting that songs are not updates frequently), Karaoke (cost, bad reviews, in this app clients say its a fraud and they didn't understand the app), Sing! (costs on the app, let people sing with several people of the entire world, in this app customer liked the fact that they have to win songs by singing and getting good scores). In my app, I would make a research weekly of the songs that are released and hit the Top 100, in order to make my app up-to-date; also, I would offer the service of singing with people form other countries and hiring several scout-hands. Also, the app would be simple but effective, in order to prevent lack of understanding from customers and prefer the app in question.
  6. App for Smart TV: Smart TV Share (no cost, share photos/videos, bad review; here a client reviewed that app didn't work for videos), Display Poner Manager (costs, no reviews). My app would not be only for photos & videos, it would display also several features including movies, music, documents, pdfs, among other features to make simplicity the best feature of the app.
Act 9

Lesson 10 - Parameters and Results

Write down a few design principles that will be important for your app.

For the course project, personally I chose to create an app called "Fashion Scope"and it would be essential for it to have different principles like:

  • Clarity: the text must be legible below the images of the clothing and also these ones must be at a good size, offering the option of a zoom-in of the wearing in question. The design must be attractive, and find a balance between creativity & formality; hence the background must be an opaque color. Fonts & graphics can reflect interactivity and highlight the most important buttons, information that the user must see while using the app.
  • Deference: the features mentioned above can help the app to be more interactive and help the user to understand how the app works and most importantly for it to be simple. In summary, the background can help to show some deference from the user, by giving options for the interface with several gradients, shadows, opaque colors and textures.
  • Depth: To facilitate the understanding of the user, the app can have several transitions in order to provide a sense of depth while navigating, and make an improvement in terms of functionality & productivity of the app better for the user.
Activity 10.1
Activity 10.2

Lesson 11 - Making Decisions

Find an app that has an appealing icon, that gets you right into the action and that provides a good on-boarding experience.

Sing! Karaoke

Sing! Karaoke is an app for those people that want to share a karaoke night globally! It's the Nº1 for karaoke in the world.

  • Appealing icon: The icon has catching colors; the design of the microphone and the musical note is catchy; also the font is interactive and nice.
  • Gets you right into the action: Sing! Karaoke is a dynamic app that directly addresses the user to the main objective. It shows the menu with the several songs, also divided into sections.
  • On-boarding experience: Personally, I had an excellent on-boarding experience because it shows at first, a short tutorial of the main features of the app.
Act 11
Hour of Code act
Created By
Regina Solorio


Created with images by FirmBee - "stock iphone business" • Phil Aaronson - "Stream of Apps" • ashkyd - "App Icon Grid" • andri333 - "iphone apple iphone 6s" • cuncon - "man smartphone mobile" • MariusMB - "iphone 4s technology"

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