If you grew up in the 80s or spent any time at Ground Kontrol, you’ve been there. You’re sitting there on Missile Command, blood blister on the side of your hand from catching it in the trackball, one missile launch area remaining, one missile, and a ton of inbound targets quickly descending on your last bastion of defense. And yet, you’re overcome by an almost Zen-like state of calm. Knowing full well that one well-placed missile could create a chain reaction of explosions that will carry you through to the next level.
Some folks just can’t get enough of IKEA. I mean, do you remember the pandemonium when they finally opened a location in Portland? Cheap modern furniture and tasty Swedish meatballs? What’s not to like?
Well, a few things. For all the Swedish furnishing and food awesomeness, it does have some drawbacks. First of all, the Las-Vegas-casino-like maze that is IKEA. And that ball pit thingamajig. But I can’t help you there.
But don’t despair, there’s a third frustrating IKEA thing that can be fixed: the golf pencils. Introducing SwedeShop, the unofficial IKEA iPhone app, from Eugene-based Bend-based (according to TechFlash) iPhone developer Danilo Campos. Read More
[HTML1]For all my crowing about Portland being the de facto hub of mobile development, I seem to cover primarily iPhone apps and maybe an Android app every once in a while. Inevitably, when those posts go live, a few people always ask, “Is there a BlackBerry version?”
And that leads me to wonder, is there? Are people in the Silicon Forest building BlackBerry apps?
I’m not a Blackberry user, but I know quite a few people who are. And—basically in any town besides Portland—I run into a lot more BlackBerry users than iPhone or Android users.
That said, I don’t know that I’m following the BlackBerry development space as closely as I could be. Read More
There’s no doubt that Portland, Oregon, is one of the most beer-o-phile-ish towns in the world. We’ve got our bevy of microbreweries, our randomly stocked beer groceries, our brewers’ festivals, and any number of folks working to keep us informed about just what’s happening in the world of beer.
That said, there’s always room for more beer-oriented stuff around here. Enter Portland’s own Taplister‘s new iPhone app Beer Signal—an app that could have more of those beer discussions happening in person. Read More
Today, there are tons of people waiting. And waiting. And waiting. Standing in line to get the latest Apple iPhone, the iPhone 3G S. But anyone with an iPhone can grab the new operating system, iPhone OS 3.0. And once you’ve done that, you can snag some cool new apps.
But just wait until you hear this.
Today as Apple makes iPhone OS 3.0 available, Urban Airship announces a deal with Tapulous—makers of the insanely popular Tap Tap Revenge—that will enable the game to support the latest iPhone 3.0 features. Read More
Urban Airship wasn’t the only exciting Portland-based iPhone news, today. Local iPhone development agency Small Society—with whom I apparently have a bit of a fanboi obsession—made it to the big stage at the Apple Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) when Zipcar was asked to demo their upcoming iPhone app.
And apparently, so does everyone else. Take a look at some of the highlights from today’s coverage of the WWDC mentioning Zipcar. Read More
Obama ’08 is your official, comprehensive connection to the heart of Barack Obama and Joe Biden’s campaign, giving you the tools you need to make an impact and stay in the know.
Making a difference takes only moments using the Call a Friend feature. Want to do more? Find your local Obama for America HQ or look up local campaign events.
Creating this politically savvy iPhone app was a wholly volunteer effort. An effort that featured five Portland folks on the team: Raven Zachary, Jason Grigsby, Lyza Danger Gardner, John Keith, and Aileen Jeffries.
Aside from being beautiful, it’s a feature rich application designed to get individuals more involved in the political process. (In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the opponents of the Obama campaign rival the proponents in downloads.)
The application has a “Call Your Friends” tool that helps you organize your contacts by key battleground states — a feature we’re hoping will generate thousands of additional personal contacts. You can also easily mark reminder notes to yourself on which friends you have called, who they are supporting and who wants a reminder call on Election Day. The information does not leave your phone (so your friends’ and your own privacy are protected) but the total amount of calls the application makes are tallied, so you can keep track of your progress as we close in on November 4th.
As Grigsby says on the Cloud Four blog:
Leaving politics aside for the moment, it’s a pretty impressive display of what is possible using the iPhone and iPod Touch platform.
[UPDATE] I just heard that the Obama ’08 for iPhone folks will be holding a launch party for the app during the next presidential debates. Head on over to the Mission Theater on Tuesday, October 7 to congratulate the team and watch some politicking. To RSVP, see the Obama ’08 iPhone App Launch Party and Presidential Debate Party on Upcoming.
Is Portland beginning to take center stage in mobile app development?
So yes, the app is super cool. (And if you agree, you may want to digg it.) But, I think—in my Silicon-Forest-centric frame of mind—that’s not the only cool thing happening in this story.
There’s something else that’s going on here. And when I say “here,” I literally mean here.
While the application is an impressive feat for a volunteer effort (or any effort for that matter) what I think may be even more interesting—and Zachary, arguably the premiere consultant for all things iPhone, agrees—is the underlying story about mobile app development in general—a development effort that, more and more, seems to be centered around talent right here in the Silicon Forest.
“This speaks to a growing trend in Portland toward mobile app development,” said Zachary. “We’ve really got something starting here.”
Grigsby echoes a similar sentiment about the creation of the Obama iPhone app:
I’m terribly proud of this application. I’m also honored to have been part of making it happen. It’s not simply that we built something that we believe will empower people to bring change to Washington, but it is also the fact that we assembled an exceptional team.
As does, Gardner:
The amount of energy that went into this was fun to be around. Raven Zachary and Jason Grigsby’s strategy genius, Jonathan Wight’s very powerful development fu, Mike Lee and Tristan O’Tierney’s hacking support, Louie Manta’s visual-zing-wow aesthetics, Aileen Jeffries and John Keith’s many-faceted support, and Dom Sagolla’s tireless testing work. Phew. That’s the lot of us.
We all hear, time and time again, how mobile is the next big thing. Wouldn’t it be nice if that big thing were happening right here in Portland?
I think it would. And I think it has the potential to happen.
And with efforts like this—and the growing ranks of mobile developers here in town—I’d say we’re well on our way.
Congratulations to the whole team—but especially the Portland folks—on launching an amazing app that’s sure to step on to a national, if not worldwide, stage.
Last Monday at 5 PM Pacific time, Avatron released Air Sharing, a temporarily free iPhone app that lets you treat your iPhone as a wireless hard drive. Not earth shattering news, I grant you.
But fast forward to today. And as of this writing—a few minutes shy of one week—they’re approaching nearly three-quarters of a million downloads.
That’s right more than 700,000 little versions of the Avatron apps are walking around on iPhones.
“It’s just amazing,” said Dave Howell, CEO of Avatron. “It’s way beyond what we thought would happen.”
And the reviews are looking quite positive, too. Even donpdonp might be happy with this little app, considering:
Best app in the app store. It’s incredibly useful and works with my Ubuntu desktop!… This is seriously the best app around. Worked out [of] the box, almost zero config.
Using Bonjour and the standard WebDAV interface, Air Sharing allows iPhone and iPod Touch users to mount the devices as a wireless drive on any Mac, Windows, or Linux computer; drag and drop files between the device and computers, and view documents in many common formats.
Basically, it’s like working with any other drive. Wirelessly.
But there are also some other interesting features that could extend the use of the Air Sharing app. What are those features? Well, Dave will be my guest on the next Silicon Florist podcast, so tune in to find out.
Interested in trying Air Sharing? Well, it’s free to try for one more week. After that the price will go up to $6.99.
(Hat tip Raven Zachary)