Image for post
Image for post
Photo by imgix on Unsplash

My first ever app — JiffyCV — is now live! Here’s the story about how it came to be, the approach I took to make it and what I learned along the way.

You find out more about the app on our website or find it in the app store and play :



The imaginative spark

I originally started looking at building some form of tool to assist job hunting in 2016, after the startup I was part of closed down and I found myself struggling to remember what I’d done in the last five years and what…

Image for post
Image for post
Apologies for the motions but I wanted to demo the zooming and panning ability

In my last blog I talked about some of the work I’ve been doing with react-konva in order to produce an example user journey map for the new product I’m working on — .

In that post I created a very basic user journey which had one logical branch, which, while great for showing the techniques being used isn’t really reflective of the scale of most user journey maps once they have a high level of functionality.

As the width of the Stage was set to window.innerWidth in the example, there is also the constraint of the user’s browser…

As part of an upcoming product that I’m working on ( if you want to sign up early) I’ve been looking at how to render a user journey map on a webpage.

I’ve created maps before in tools like Miro and Figma but never had to put much thought into the code that sits behind these tools — turns out thanks to Konva (and react-konva) this is actually pretty simple to do.

While this might not be the final solution I use, this approach is a nice introduction into how to use SVG to create the objects in a design…

Last year I bought myself my first non-Mac computer in about 14 years and within a week I’d already managed to break my Windows installation and had to put Linux on it to actually use the thing.

Since then I’ve put another hard-drive in the machine and re-installed Windows in order to play World of Warcraft with my girlfriend, use a bunch of Adobe apps and play some games on Steam.

One of those games is a dungeon crawler called Blazing Beaks, a game where all the characters are birds of some form. I really enjoy this game as it…

Another year older, probably not any wiser

Image for post
Image for post
My birthday was online this year

Turned 33

It’s birthday on the 12th. This year it was on a Tuesday which meant that I was working so I decided to push back any celebrations to the weekend.

I got some pretty good meme related presents from my girlfriend and I finally grabbed to buy a copy of Taiko no Tatsujin (which randomly was £70 at Argos but £200 elsewhere online).

Image for post
Image for post
I missed the mark

At the start of January 2021, JiffyCV -the app I’d spent about 7 months working on- hit the app stores.

This was the first app that I had created based on an idea I had and during the ideation and development stages I thought I was doing enough to get feedback on the idea and the app as it grew.

Before starting the app I surveyed people about what their biggest pain points were around using CVs to apply for jobs. I found a number of solutions to these problems and how this could scale out to multiple business models.

Image for post
Image for post

I’ll apologise in advance for the back and forth on the spelling of the word ‘locali(s|z)e’. I’m British but the library uses the American spelling.

During the development of JiffyCV I never really gave much thought to the localisation needs of an app until I went to submit to the different app stores and realised the scale of markets being supported.

Localisation is a tricky task to get right, especially in the domain JiffyCV exists in as it’s not as simple as translating text, but there are considerations into the format of data like dates (in the UK we use…

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Matt Palmer on Unsplash

In December 2020 JiffyCV went into beta and I got to experience the highs of getting something I’d worked hard on into people’s hands and the lows of those people then reporting app crashing bugs that I hadn’t found during development.

The key to fixing a bug is knowing the exact steps to take to reproduce it and then how those steps cause a deviation in the intended behaviour, but when you’re not experiencing this first hand (and sometimes when you are) it’s incredibly hard to get the information you need to reproduce those steps.

The best way of giving…

2020 was a weird year and I have a feeling that 2021 will be more of the same but that hopefully won’t stop me achieving some of the stuff on my todo list.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash

How 2020 went

At the start of 2020 I laid out four things I wanted to achieve:

  • Finish reading all 41 Discworld books
  • Create a side hustle
  • Go to New Zealand
  • Get fitter

I managed to do two of these — Create a side hustle (I’m about to launch JiffyCV) and reading the Discworld books.

The New Zealand trip turned into another trip to Japan as British Airways had a…


Image for post
Image for post
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Got app into beta

The app I’ve spent that last 6+ months working on — JiffyCV — is finally in beta!

I wrote a post about the journey to beta if you’re interested in learning more about what goes behind ideating, validating, building and launching a beta for an app.

We’re hoping to get the app in stores early next year so hopefully next month’s round up will involve some good news.

Fixed my vacuum

I wrote a while ago about the Deebot robot vacuum that I got from Amazon and how I managed to hook it up to a PS4 controller to control it.

Colin Wren

Technical Lead at BJSS. Interested in Automated Testing, Dev practises, Metal, Chiptune. All views my own.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store