From the Forum — Issue #7

From the Forum — Issue #7

From the ForumWelcome to the seventh installment of From the Forum. In this series, guest blogger Alex Jackson highlights outstanding threads from the Corona Forum. The goal is to bring attention to the most captivating, interesting, and thought-provoking discussions taking place in our very own backyard.

Please visit the forum to join these conversations or start your own!

1. Corona SDK and Google Forms

Google provides a lot of the infrastructure that makes our apps tantalizing to users, and their backend APIs are really useful for a multitude of applications in the mobile space.

One such benefit is the flexibility and interoperability of Google Forms. While using the Forms API from a web standpoint is a breeze, shoe-horning them into a mobile app can take some serious effort. Fortunately, the talented developer Michael714 undertook the task of having Google Forms play nice with Corona SDK. Before you proceed, note that the majority of the backbone is based on SQL Server which many people may not be familiar with. In any event, the info Michael presents should help those of us without these skills to achieve new heights in app development. So, get your spreadsheets in order and head over to the original thread:

2. High-Level Lua Post Ahead: Iterator “Best Practices”

Admittedly, I haven’t peeked too far into high-level Lua coding — I figure that I can do well enough with a basic Lua foundation and utilize what Lua and Corona can accomplish. But at some point, we need to spread our wings and take flight with the deep functionality provided by the Lua Language.

First on the list: iterators. These can be tricky little functions. According to the Lua Wiki:

“An iterator is any construction that allows you to iterate over the elements of a collection.”

Using them successfully in your projects can turn a ridiculous plate of spaghetti into an elegant stream of code. So, if you’re daring, follow the link below to some useful iterator explanations, or post your own to help out others.

3. “Suspense” Can Build Even in the Developer Space

Recently, I saw a family friend’s 6-year-old daughter playing on her own iPod Touch. Every time she got excited, she would accidentally squeeze the “home” button which would quit the game and erase her progress. Needless to say, she was not pleased.

Identifying, trapping, and dealing with app suspend/exit events helps to prevent user dissatisfaction and increase the likelihood of an enjoyable app experience — that much we can all agree on! But what are the best ways to determine if the app has exited, and which behavior should occur in which case? Developer ksan had the same questions when dealing with SQL cleanup and found that OS differences may cause different behaviors.

Click through to the original post to get a few tips on the “suspend” state:

About Alex

Alex Jackson is an indie developer and the founder of Panc Software, specializing in retro-style gaming. He has created several mobile applications, enjoys long walks on the beach, pixel art, and reading the Corona forums. Contact him by email or follow him on Twitter: @pancsoftware.

Rob Miracle

Rob is the Developer Relations Manager for Corona Labs. Besides being passionate about helping other developers make great games using Corona, he is also enjoys making games in his spare time. Rob has been coding games since 1979 from personal computers to mainframes. He has over 16 years professional experience in the gaming industry.

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