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 https://jiffycv.com or find it in the app store and play :
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…
A couple of months ago we finished evaluating the viability of Reciprocal.dev and I started the not so small task of turning what was about 2 months of work done in my spare time into a service that people would want to buy.
We had built a basic landing page during the validation stage using Gatsby & Netlify in order to enable sign ups and this did the job really well.
This approach started to become a bottleneck though as I was tied up working on the app functionality, and with my co-founder not being as technical as myself, our…
In order to add authentication to Reciprocal.dev we’ve been using Firebase as the free tier gave us more than enough to get a basic app ready for alpha without paying a penny.
Reciprocal.dev is made of 3 different web apps; an Account Management app, User Journey Map Editing app and a User Journey Map Viewing app, and then we also have a marketing website.
In order to cleanly separate the apps I had original set them up to be served under different sub-domains (e.g. serving the account management app from account.reciprocal.dev) and while this worked there was one side-effect.
During the development of Reciprocal.dev it became apparent that for most users the building blocks of a User Journey map wasn’t a mockup of a screen but a simple sticky note.
The sticky note allowed users to quickly jot down a step in a User Journey and move it across multiple contextual areas until it fit in the right place. A mockup required a lot more effort and had to sometimes change significantly to fit in with the rest of the steps in the area landed.
Adding a sticky note component to the app was pretty simple, it’s just a…
I’ve had my second jab so I’m just waiting for my 5G to kick in now
It’s been a really busy month on the Reciprocal.dev front. At the start of the month the editor was working well using local storage and we made the call to start preparing for an alpha.
Originally this alpha was going to continue using local storage but I felt that doing so wouldn’t allow users to sign up for an account that they could continue to use throughout the beta and eventual launch so I pushed myself to get a basic account management app in…
The app I’m currently making (Reciprocal.dev) provides users with an interactive User Journey Map which essentially contains a number of User Journey steps connected together by lines, in a manner similar to a flow chart diagram.
In my previous post I touched on how I implemented the functionality for a user to drag a connecting line from one User Journey step to another using anchors and a preview of the connecting line. If you’ve not read that post you can find it below:
While a basic link between User Journey steps is more than enough for a user to build…
I’m beavering away on another post right now but it’s not going to be ready for my (self-imposed) weekly blog deadline so here another bunch of programming memes that I found funny.
Previously on Colin got distracted and started writing a blog too late:
And now your regularly sheduled shitpost:
The app I’m currently working on (Reciprocal.dev) provides users with an interactive User Journey Map which essentially contains a number of User Journey steps connected together by lines in a manner similar to a flow chart.
While we validated the idea using a hardcoded set of data and hand-cranked SVG paths after, we were sure we had something worth pursuing. The next big piece of work was to build an editor so users could create their own User Journey Maps.
I’m currently in the midst of building an editor for Reciprocal.dev so that users can build their own interactive user journey maps and as part of building this functionality I needed a means of allowing users to create the steps of the user journey easily.
After conducting a couple of UX experiments I settled on a Drag ’n’ Drop approach with a fallback of having a click of the item adding a new step in the centre of the map.
When building a mapping tool the Drag ’n’ Drop approach allows users a lot more accuracy in the initial placement…
It’s been way too warm
After some time interviewing potential users and iterating over the UX for an editor I finally started writing the code to implement the editor.
It took me about a week to get the initial parts of the editor working as I had to essentially rewrite the way I was rendering the existing map that we had over at https://examples.reciprocal.dev but as the editor removed a number of aspects to the data structure this was made things a little easier.
One big win was that I finally started to understand how to build a stepped line…