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App Idea: Time Window. Help?

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App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 2/15/17 1:15 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? J C 2/15/17 2:00 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? J C 2/15/17 2:06 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 2/15/17 2:34 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? elizabeth 2/15/17 3:45 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Rainbow 2/15/17 3:54 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Derek2 2/15/17 4:39 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? rik 2/15/17 8:46 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 2/15/17 9:17 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? rik 2/15/17 11:25 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Lewis James 2/16/17 4:37 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? a person 2/16/17 7:15 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 2/16/17 7:54 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Liz 2/19/17 2:19 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Noah D 2/16/17 9:46 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? John 3/14/17 7:49 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? J C 3/14/17 8:12 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? ivory 3/15/17 12:13 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 3/15/17 2:31 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? shargrol 3/15/17 6:00 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? ivory 3/15/17 11:26 PM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? J C 3/16/17 2:51 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 3/16/17 3:05 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? ivory 3/16/17 7:58 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? J C 3/16/17 10:34 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? ivory 3/16/17 10:57 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? J C 3/17/17 11:31 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Daniel M. Ingram 3/16/17 3:08 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? Lewis James 3/16/17 7:32 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? ivory 3/16/17 8:04 AM
RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help? ivory 3/16/17 8:11 AM
App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 1:15 PM
Dear Technorati in the group,

I have enjoyed the last 2 weeks, during which time I have taken off work and basically done dharma all day long, meditation, book revision, forum posting, going through old emails, cleaning up some DhO tech business and links page entries, and chatted with a person or two who have wanted to talk.

However, this protected time ends in two days, and then it is back to the grind. However, I have some ideas about how I, and likely many other people with busy lives who want to connect with people, could make better use of their limited and sometimes unpredictable time windows that show up to connect with others, and it is an app.

The basics of the app are this: Coordinating time to talk with a long list of people (typically about 10-15 waiting on it) is complex and time-consuming, more time-consuming than the total free time I have to talk. I have time windows, sometimes that show up at surprising times. People want those time windows. I sometimes want them to have those time windows. I want to let them know a time window is open and have the first person who says they want it get it. I don't want to have them be harrassed by these warnings in, say, the middle of the night, or when at work, unless they want to be, but I don't want to be afraid to offer the time window. So, a Time Window App would protect time windows on both sides and help those with Time Windows in general use those well to connect. I believe that such an app would have wide-ranging appeal and applications, as, one of the ironies of this hyper-connected world is that connecting with people is very complicated sometimes, given that labor saving devices cost us so much time.

If you have the capacity or knowlege of how such a thing might be created, let me know, and we can discuss it. If you want more details, I can provide those, as I have spent a lot of time thinking about what functionality I would want in such an app to make it very friendly to people on both sides. If you know of an app or feature in some other platform that already does this, let me know.

Many thanks to anyone who can help with this, as it is one of the more vexing problems I have to try to solve to spend more time sharing dharma adventures, tips and friendship.

Daniel

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 2:00 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Have you looked at setster at all? they have a feature where you can send a tweet when you have an opening and people can book it through twitter.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 2:06 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
youcanbook.me is another option

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 2:34 PM as a reply to J C.
Neat options. However, both seem much more for people who can set up slots with some predictability. I want something more on the fly and that only is visible to those I have confirmed I want to talk with. Perhaps I missed something in their functionality. I also don't want a public process about this like twitter would be.

Thoughts?

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 3:45 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Maybe Pick?

or Invite ?


Haven't used either but may give them a try.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 3:54 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
I have a few friends that use Calendy. I don't know if you can set up notifications in the way you describe - I haven't set it up myself - but it seems well suited to identifying and matching peope to those availble time windows.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 4:39 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
  • Set up a special-purpose Skype id
  • Give the id only to your friends
  • Tell your friends to add you as a connection, and to leave their Skype on
  • When you sign on to that id, you're automatically marked available
  • When you connect with a friend, you're automatically marked busy
  • When you sign out, you're automatically marked unavailable

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 8:46 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
This sounds like a really cool idea.  I've got a friend who is spending the year in a time zone 8 hours away from mine and I think this app could be useful for us as well.  

I work as a software developer currently and would be willing to help out with this as a side project.  I don't have a TON of app development experience in particular (I mostly code sim software in C) but I'm certain I'd be able to pick things up and contribute.

The only apps I know of that come close are those which have already been submitted, and they are more for finding common free time in the future as opposed to on the fly connections.

Consider me interested in further discussion!

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 9:17 PM as a reply to rik.
Thanks for the suggestions. Each of them definitely has some component of the puzzle, but not all of it.

Here's the workflow I invision, based on what happens now and what I want to happen.

I work a job that follows no regular schedule and whose hours can vary from scheduled hours, so predicting when I will be free, when I will need to find more sleep or time to eat or whatever can be very hard ahead of time. Some predictability does occur, but plenty doesn't.

People contact me by email wanting to talk about meditation or whatever, and thereby I get their story and some background. They are from all over the world with variable schedules and work lives and families and kids.

If, based on their story and apparent needs, they seem like they would benefit from a conversation and want to talk with me as well, then they go on the list. The list typically contains about 10-15 people. Currently, there are people still on the list from some months ago.

Variable time windows show up for me unexpectedly and at odd hours of the day and night when I simultaneously have the time and energy and interest to talk. Time windows that I think will work ahead of time suddenly close unpredictably as well, both on my end and on theirs.

What I want to happen next is this:

When we decied to talk, I send them a something to either a username or an email and they now have an invite. When they accept it back, I put them in a group on the app. Exactly how to prevent spam invitations will need to be worked out. I have imagined that both people might need to send something to a server somewhere, and, when there is a mutual match, the list entry occurs. Anyway, TBD.

When a time window arises, I open the app, dial in how many minutes I have, pick an individual, group, or the whole list, and hit the button. Everyone on the list that I have chosen gets a notification that I am free to talk and how much time I have free, that is if they haven't programmed their phone to exclude notifications during that time window, as most people's schedules are more predictable than mine, or just gone offline. That way, if I have a 2am time window my time, I don't have to worry that I will wake someone up when their phone beeps, as they have the option to both go offline manually and also to pre-program times when they don't want to be notified, such as when at work or generally asleep or whatever. Location based lockout might be a cool feature, so, if their work hours are variable, then I won't disturb them at work. I want both parties to have clear options to create strong barriers around their time windows.

The first one to respond gets the time window with pre-created expectations about how long or short the window is, and a notification goes out  to everyone else that the window has closed.

We talk. They go off the list (maybe some options could be available here, TBD). There is a history kept so that people who I have previously talked with can be more easily added to the list again if need be.

That's basically the app idea in a nutshell. Exactly by what medium we talk will have to be variable, as some are on Skype, some on Google Hangouts, some on Facetime, some on a regular phone, etc. and the invitation process should have a place to pre-arranged this ahead of time when I added them to the list so that I don't have to work it out when the time window arises.

That's my dream app. I imagine that many people would find this sort of defined time window management helpful, given our busy modern lives.

Thoughts?

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/15/17 11:25 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
That's about what I had in mind from reading your initial post and from my limited knowledge of building apps I'm pretty sure creating it would be relatively straightforward.  As long as it doesn't expand out of control in popularity I'm pretty sure you could host the server here on dho.

I also agree that it could be helpful for other people too since it has the potential to streamline interactions within networks of people where there is one person which must manage interactions between many other people.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/16/17 9:46 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
This is a great idea.  I had a similar one awhile back about how to get short spontaneous convos going with teachers.  In another 5 to 10 years (assuming I stay at my current pace) I'd like to teach - but not for $$ - just after work and on the weekends  irregularly.  Such an app would allow for that.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/16/17 4:37 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
I think you could implement this 'manually' using Slack - 

https://slack.com/

It's very commonly used right now amongst software developers and other businesses for a sort of 'async' instant messaging / organisational / file sharing and storage tool. If you've ever used IRC - it's kind of like a rich-media version of that but specifically designed for small-medium size teams of people, and you don't have to be online to receive or view the messages later.

You can create a slack team for free, which essentially puts you in control of a private slack instance, and allows you to invite people, create public (to the team) or private chatrooms for varying subjects, etc.

You can invite members who can join the channel either by app, website, or desktop client, and set individual permissions on what they can see/do.

You can interact with them directly one-on-one, or communicate more publically in a public or private room with more than one person. You can use text chat or voice/video calling, do screen sharing, etc.

Importantly, each member can control their 'snooze' setting for each team they're a member of (they can join multiple teams at a time if necessary). So they can set the time window in which they receive notifications from your channels, and they won't receive anything outside of that window unless they've specifically allowed something through in the settings (ie, if their username is mentioned). They can simply sign out of the team or press a button to snooze notifications indefinitely or for a set period of time in addition.

So - say you'd invited 10-15 people into this slack channel, and they either downloaded the app or used Chrome notifications or whatever to stay notified, if you made a post, say, in the #callwindow channel - in which you'd added those people who made the list - 'I have 1 hour free in 30 mins, any takers?' all those who were outside of their snooze period would receive that notification immediately and respond to you over Slack. Once booked, you could make another announcement post to say it was taken, then use the Slack tools to communicate or co-ordinate a skype or phone call.

Having used Slack for a while for work, I think it's really suited to the job and it's completely free for a basic account. The paid memberships add support for group calls, more storage and more technical stuff but it's really unnecessary for most cases.

In addition - if you had the time to manage a 'public' side to the channel alongside the 'time window' aspect - it could serve as a very good co-platform for the Dharma Overground, for more instantaneous short-form group conversation alongside the more long-form forum posts. It's probably way out of scope for what you're after, but it's a neat idea that many communities seem to be embracing.

In addition (apologies for all the minor edits, it's getting late here!), if you find this not to your taste and you prefer a more self-hosted approach, I'd be happy to offer some time for free to build a prototype of your idea. Probably wouldn't have the time to build a full featured app, but for example, a cut down approach to your idea may be: a web-app where your 'list' users can sign up and login to set their schedule, and a backend where you can announce, with the app simply sending an email to those who are currently available according to the database. Something like that would be relatively simple to code and wouldn't be too much more cumbersome than a native app.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/16/17 7:15 PM as a reply to Lewis James.
I second Lewis, I think Slack is the way to go.  It's basically a private chatroom.  You can let people know when you're available (and they'll get a notification on their phone), and the first fifteen who reply to your message will get a skype conversation with you.  The only issue is that it's not like a queue of calls will get loaded onto Skype...you'll have to manually verify that the people who call you are who they said they were.

The nice thing about this is that you can use it at your own pace.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/16/17 7:54 PM as a reply to a person.
Curiously enough, when I started my current administrative job on top of my clinical work, I tried to get the admin team to use Slack, having chosen it after hours and hours of research, but it didn't catch on, not sure why. We currently work on Evernote and email.

Still, that shows something about what it is like to lead a hypercompartmentalized life, in that I am aware of Slack's capabilities, chose them for my team, and yet it didn't come to mind at all for this application, though I think it could work pretty well, so will look more into using it for that, and, if it doesn't work, go back to the drawing board.

Thanks for the fine suggestios,

Daniel

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
2/19/17 2:19 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
If Slack hasn't already solved the problem - how about setting up a mailing list (or even just a group in your mail client, or a plain text list to paste into the BCC field), then letting people manage the notifications on their end?

Even before android had built-in do-not-disturb features, I had an app for that. Google Inbox has features to filter messages into labels, and per-label notification settings. I should hope iOS has similar things by now, and there's probably more apps and services with more advanced features out there. Save your resources for whatever edge cases come up after that.

The important part is to then *not* use that mailing list for anything else. It needs to be something easy to filter. Companies that send urgent requests from the same email address as their spammy advertisements are really *really* annoying.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/14/17 7:49 PM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
Dear Technorati in the group,

I have enjoyed the last 2 weeks, during which time I have taken off work and basically done dharma all day long, meditation, book revision, forum posting, going through old emails, cleaning up some DhO tech business and links page entries, and chatted with a person or two who have wanted to talk.

However, this protected time ends in two days, and then it is back to the grind. However, I have some ideas about how I, and likely many other people with busy lives who want to connect with people, could make better use of their limited and sometimes unpredictable time windows that show up to connect with others, and it is an app.

The basics of the app are this: Coordinating time to talk with a long list of people (typically about 10-15 waiting on it) is complex and time-consuming, more time-consuming than the total free time I have to talk. I have time windows, sometimes that show up at surprising times. People want those time windows. I sometimes want them to have those time windows. I want to let them know a time window is open and have the first person who says they want it get it. I don't want to have them be harrassed by these warnings in, say, the middle of the night, or when at work, unless they want to be, but I don't want to be afraid to offer the time window. So, a Time Window App would protect time windows on both sides and help those with Time Windows in general use those well to connect. I believe that such an app would have wide-ranging appeal and applications, as, one of the ironies of this hyper-connected world is that connecting with people is very complicated sometimes, given that labor saving devices cost us so much time.

If you have the capacity or knowlege of how such a thing might be created, let me know, and we can discuss it. If you want more details, I can provide those, as I have spent a lot of time thinking about what functionality I would want in such an app to make it very friendly to people on both sides. If you know of an app or feature in some other platform that already does this, let me know.

Many thanks to anyone who can help with this, as it is one of the more vexing problems I have to try to solve to spend more time sharing dharma adventures, tips and friendship.

Daniel

Hey Daniel, 

As a software-developer when I read about your idea at first it seemed really interesting. After brainstorming this with my boyfriend here are a few problems about it.

-it feels impersonal
Even being on-the-fly doesn't mitigate this problem and the entire interaction would feel impersonal. We as humans don't schedule time and communicate in this way and it'd most likely feel unnatural.

-notifications problem
Ok, I can set them on only after 5 which I'd be usually at home for but what if it turns out that same day I had different plans? Then I'd have to the notifications off and then on again. Same with sleeping schedule, usually, I may sleep 11 to 6 but another 1 to 8. In turns this would be catastrophic for people with hectic schedules which would be the intended userbase.

-one-sidedness
You are a busy person and I am not. Do I have to install an app just to arrange to talk to you? Considering that only people with busy and hectic schedules use it then that wouldn't be big group of friends. The smaller the group of friends the lower the chances of overlapping time windows.

I still think it could be a good idea so if you have some kind of suggestions to overcome said issues I'd be happy to hear them. Feel free to message me if you want to discuss this further.


RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/14/17 8:12 PM as a reply to John.
John:

Hey Daniel, 

As a software-developer when I read about your idea at first it seemed really interesting. After brainstorming this with my boyfriend here are a few problems about it.

-it feels impersonal
Even being on-the-fly doesn't mitigate this problem and the entire interaction would feel impersonal. We as humans don't schedule time and communicate in this way and it'd most likely feel unnatural.

-notifications problem
Ok, I can set them on only after 5 which I'd be usually at home for but what if it turns out that same day I had different plans? Then I'd have to the notifications off and then on again. Same with sleeping schedule, usually, I may sleep 11 to 6 but another 1 to 8. In turns this would be catastrophic for people with hectic schedules which would be the intended userbase.

-one-sidedness
You are a busy person and I am not. Do I have to install an app just to arrange to talk to you? Considering that only people with busy and hectic schedules use it then that wouldn't be big group of friends. The smaller the group of friends the lower the chances of overlapping time windows.

I still think it could be a good idea so if you have some kind of suggestions to overcome said issues I'd be happy to hear them. Feel free to message me if you want to discuss this further.

These are really strange objections. "We as humans" don't schedule time that way? Sure we do. For instance, my therapist sends me a text when he has an opening. I look online to book a doctor's appointment. It's "impersonal" and "unnatural" to have someone tell you he has time available if you want to skype?

I'm not understanding the notifications problem. You could set up notifications to go to an email account so you'd be free to check it whenever you wanted. Or just have them go to your phone and turn the sound off so they don't disturb you. (Sometimes I forget that not everyone has their phone on silent at all times - I personally could never handle having my phone interrupt me with sound.)

As far as one-sidedness, well, yes, part of the point of the app is that it's useful for making appointments with experts in various fields, so it's a way of honoring their busy schedule and respecting their generosity. I'd love to skype with Daniel at some point - he's an expert, he's very busy, so I have no problem conforming to his schedule.

(These kind of remind me of the three characteristics: impersonality, notifications, and one-sidedness.)

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/15/17 12:13 AM as a reply to J C.
I make iPhone apps for a living. John has some good objections. Here are my responses to his concerns.

1. I assume this app would be for a very specific type of person in a specific field which required squeezing things into tight time slots.
2. Apps rarely accommodate everyone. Theres a set of features that will work for 80% of the population and that's the best we can do. Also, the first version of the app doesn't have to include every single feature.
3. This one I completely agree with. I would not likely install an app to speak with a single person. That said, maybe there are cases where it would be totaly necessary. Looks like JC is more than happy to oblige.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/15/17 2:31 AM as a reply to ivory.
How hard would it be to make the app? What would be involved?

People sign up for Skype to talk to me and multiple other dharma teachers, so it is hard to imagine they wouldn't download an app to help schedule it. The scheduling time involved in the back and forth of emails, Skype messages, Google Hangout chats, Texts, and missed calls is sometimes substantial and still we don't get to talk, so this would be way easier, I think.

Impersonal? More impersonal than email, text, Skype messages, Google Hangout chats and the like? Maybe, but it all seems like digital stuff to me equally.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/15/17 6:00 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
I have to admit, I'm watching this thread with interest. Even if the App isn't created, I'd still be interested in learning how Slack works in the meditation teacher context. 

Seems like one of the challenges is also building kind of assistance/interverntion expectation for the users - some aspects of meditation lend themselves to episodic check-ins, others benefit from regularly scheduled update/diagnosis/refinements of practice. And some aspects are pure spiritual/psychological crisis.  

Episodic check-ins can be really helpful for established meditators.

Meditation boards and practice journals can work surprisingly well for new meditators or for people who really want to establish consistent, daily practice. Episodic check-ins can also help, mostly because it can be a real pain to type everything out and frankly there is nothing quite like a good conversation. But it should be clear if what is being is offered is a longer-term teacher-student relationship or just episodic check-ins.

Spiritual/psychological crisis can benefit from a check-in, but really needs a referral to one or more people that can help more directly and over a longer period of time. It would be important to have the caller know if this is the service that is being offered and/or what is the approach that will be used if someone calls with a crisis.

I guess these are some of the things that might go in a "front end" for an App, to help users know what is being offered.

Hmm, maybe also a biography/teacher profile as well as links to written resources that the teacher recommends as helpful...

Okay, that was just a brainstorm.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/15/17 11:26 PM as a reply to shargrol.
Now that I think about it some more, I think your app idea is great.

Think of version 1.0 having a basic set of features. Once you launch version 1.0, wait until you get user feedback to add features to later versions.

Assuming that I understand your needs this is what I would recommend for version 1.0…

SERVER
- host the coordinator info (aka daniel ingram's info)
- host user info
- send push notifications

USER MOBILE
- user can sign in / create account
- user can search for coordinator
- user can request to be part of the coordinator's network
- user can receive push notification when coordinator has open time slot
- user can request available time slot
- user can be notified if time slot request is successful/unsuccessful

COORDINATOR MOBILE
- coordinator can sign in / create account
- coordinator can approve/deny user requests to be part of coordinator's network
- coordinator can specify open time slots in calendar
- coordinator can select which users to notify
- coordinator can send push notifications to selected user(s)
- coordinator can receive push notification when time slot is locked

I would recommend using google for authentication so that all users are forced to use the same services and simplify things on your end. There may even be a way to integrate hangouts directly into the app but I’m not sure. But if there is, there’s a lot of cool things you can potentially do.

As far as notifications coming in at inconvenient times, there is no way to gate them. Push notifications are fired and received no matter what. The good news is that users are smart enough to silent their phones these days.

As for development, you will need a mobile developer and a web developer. The mobile needs to talk to the server and the server needs to be able to store data and relay notifications.

As for server costs, I have no idea how much it costs to host data on the server. But the app will cost you $99 dollars a year simply to keep your Apple account open.

I'm not sure what your budget is but I'm guessing around $10K from a seasoned developer. This is an extremely rough estimate.

Hope this helps. Let me know if you need more clarification.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 2:51 AM as a reply to ivory.
The client could have an option to allow notifications between certain times or to only notify by email. Email could be taken care of on the client end - the user can put in an email address and when the app receives a notification it could send the user an email.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 3:05 AM as a reply to J C.
I would like lockout of notifications by time windows that could be pre-programmed, by location (such as at work), and by user choice at that time, as well as the standard lockouts, such as Do Not Disturb mode, as I really want to be able to send out requests at 3am, and really don't want people on the list who want to sleep to possibly be woken up in the ordinary sense by them.

My dreams, anyway.

Email notification as an option might be less obtrusive, clearly, but would they notice and get it? I guess it would depend on what notifications they have set up for that address and/or emails in general.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 3:08 AM as a reply to ivory.
Thanks for roughing out specs.

How would server time and hosting and all that run? I suppose you would need to code both the app and the server that handled it, yes? Could some standard server be used? What per-hour rate are you imagining when you come up with the $10,000 rough figure?

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 7:32 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
You could get it done a lot cheaper with outsourced freelancing. $10k is a reasonable figure for a full featured bespoke app/server from a skilled, modern team for any kind of app really. You can of course get apps developed for a fraction of that - you're just gambling on quality. You could spend $1000 getting an app developed by an overseas company only to have to spend $9000 getting it fixed later when it's in full use and has grown beyond its capacity or security flaws come up.

Given that there are a fair few devs posting here - would it maybe be worth trying to do this the free open source way? Between us we could probably knock out a prototype in our free time collaborating on Github, and it seems the right thing to do dana-wise. If anyone wants to attempt that, I'd be up for it.

Edit: Of course it would then be free for use by anyone, not just 'Daniels teaching app' so depends how much ownership you'd want, Daniel.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 7:58 AM as a reply to J C.
J C:
The client could have an option to allow notifications between certain times or to only notify by email. Email could be taken care of on the client end - the user can put in an email address and when the app receives a notification it could send the user an email.


I really don't think you can reliably do that with push notifications. Push really doesn't care what you think unless you disable push entirely. Check out the settings app and look at the push setttings for any app.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 8:11 AM as a reply to Daniel M. Ingram.
Daniel M. Ingram:
Thanks for roughing out specs.

How would server time and hosting and all that run? I suppose you would need to code both the app and the server that handled it, yes? Could some standard server be used? What per-hour rate are you imagining when you come up with the $10,000 rough figure?

You are correct. The server side would have its own codebase and would thus need to be coded separately. Any web dev should be able to knock that out fairly quickly, though, since it's a really small chunk. I was estimating $100 per hour. Good developers will charge between $100 and $150 / hour.

As for how much it costs to host the server side code here are a couple links. I'm assuming that the server would be implemented in Rails but there may be a better choice for this:

http://www.whoishostingthis.com/compare/ruby-on-rails/
http://railsplayground.com/

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 8:04 AM as a reply to Lewis James.
Lewis:
You could get it done a lot cheaper with outsourced freelancing. $10k is a reasonable figure for a full featured bespoke app/server from a skilled, modern team for any kind of app really. You can of course get apps developed for a fraction of that - you're just gambling on quality. You could spend $1000 getting an app developed by an overseas company only to have to spend $9000 getting it fixed later when it's in full use and has grown beyond its capacity or security flaws come up.

Given that there are a fair few devs posting here - would it maybe be worth trying to do this the free open source way? Between us we could probably knock out a prototype in our free time collaborating on Github, and it seems the right thing to do dana-wise. If anyone wants to attempt that, I'd be up for it.

Edit: Of course it would then be free for use by anyone, not just 'Daniels teaching app' so depends how much ownership you'd want, Daniel.
Exactly, if you outsource the development for this app your are taking a gamble but it will be a lot cheaper. Most people who oursource end up having the app redone locally for 10x the price.

I'm curious to hear how many devs would sign up for contributing. If there were a few devs on the project I can chip in some time.

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 10:34 AM as a reply to ivory.
It looks like there are ways to catch push notifications on android but not ios - interesting:

https://medium.com/@deividi/a-good-way-to-handle-incoming-notifications-in-android-dc64c29041a5

https://support.pubnub.com/support/solutions/articles/14000043535-can-my-ios-app-receive-messages-while-inactive-

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/16/17 10:57 AM as a reply to J C.
J C:
It looks like there are ways to catch push notifications on android but not ios


That is correct. On Android you can implement a handler that runs in a background process. On iOS notifications are handled by the OS.

I take it you're a developer, JC?

RE: App Idea: Time Window. Help?
Answer
3/17/17 11:31 AM as a reply to ivory.
Ok, good to know about android and ios.

I'm not anything... there is no me ;)

But on a more pragmatic level, I'm not a developer professionally but I do have some background and knowledge in programming.