I realize I haven’t posted any status updates in quite some time, so I’m going to fill everyone in on what I’ve been up to.
The past few weeks have been rather busy for me. This has directly affected the amount of time I have spent working on the application. Two weeks ago, my girlfriend came to visit for the week. I felt it would be improper to work on the application while she was visiting. The following week, I traveled to Nag’s Head with my friend and his family. I worked slightly on the website and set it up while I was at the beach, but only fixed a few bugs in the current code and didn’t add anything new. My girlfriend then visited for a few more days. I’m now completely free of delays and will be getting back to work.
Website / Server
I’ve been having some issues getting some database code to work the way I want it to. I’m not sure exactly what the problem is, but I think it involves either permissions issues on my database user account, or issues with the way I’m trying to connect to the database from my script. This is a rather large issue, as I need to have the database code in place before I release an alpha, or the places people have traveled won’t be able to fit into my master design plan and they’ll have to restart. I don’t want that, because there’s a chance people will go on a trip to a distant location while testing the alpha.
I’ve been debating on whether or not I want to use Google’s Maps API or something different. I had my eyes on using OpenStreetMaps; however, the developers of OSM recommend that I host the map tiles myself. If I were to do this, it would take a large amount of space on the server (I think about 250 GB or so). It also means that in the event that this application ever catches on, the server would get blasted with map tile requests. This would slow down the server for everyone actually using the website portion of it. I could opt to use Amazon’s S3 or something, but then that’s more money out of my pocket that I don’t want to spend until the application pays for it.
I’m also trying to figure out exactly what the best method of doing the fog part of the application is. I’m debating on storing various zoom levels as image files on the user’s SD card versus some other method of generation. It’s something I’ll have to play around with and hopefully not tie the choice and the rest of the application together wholly, or I’ll have to rewrite lots of code in the future (possibly).
I have figured out what I’m going to name the application, but I’m withholding it for the time being until I actually have a release out. My girlfriend is going to help with the graphical assets that I need. I have all of the necessary things in place to put the application on the market when the time comes. One thing I’ll have to look at in the near future is localization. I would like to have the application available in as many languages as possible, but I’ll have to see how hard that will be.
That’s really it for now. I’m going to work on the fog part of the application and then work on implementing the speed and elevation code. The elevation part will be more time consuming as I need to find a database to use that contains the various elevation values of different locations. This may or may not ever be implemented, depending on how adversely it affects the performance of the application and the user’s battery life and data consumption. I’m going to try my best to make the application use as little resources as possible.