02 September 2016
From the Forum — Issue #139
Welcome to the latest 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!
No such thing as a free lunch
It’s the human condition to want to keep up with what other folks are doing across the fence. In a world of fast-moving software development, even having an inkling of the competitive landscape can help you shape your engineering decisions.
There are quite a few websites that claim to provide a clear picture of the mobile app business scene, hooking up subscribers with charts, spreadsheets, and interactive reports galore. This forum thread goes over a few of these and the information is extremely valuable.
It takes a lot of time to gather all of the info, digest it, and collate it, not to mention verifying facts. The informal research is provided here for free, so remember to weigh the value of the info against what is being charged for it!
The intricacies of an adaptive configuration
Corona SDK has always been a fantastic option when creating awesome games, and as soon as developers realized that it was so flexible and fast, applying the lessons learned to creating business apps was easy. We have seen some amazing apps that increase efficiency and decrease waste.
In the recent past, Corona added a new option for developers to create non-game apps for larger screen sizes. The “adaptive” mode allows an app to scale up and “reveal” more of an app’s graphical interface on devices with larger screens, such as iPads. The main use-case is a calendar app. Smaller devices might only want to display the days of the week, while larger devices might want to show an entire month.
In this forum thread, support engineer Rob Miracle runs down a practical example of an app that relies on adaptive scaling. Check it out and learn how to make this option work for you.
Memory constraints when you’re making pretty pictures
Mobile devices have become more powerful over the years. So, it is tempting to think that we can load up on the largest and most resource-hungry images and media in our games and apps.
However, it is still important to effectively manage the sizes of your included images. Remember that images which are not created pragmatically could still potentially waste a mobile device’s precious resources!
Check out this forum thread which discusses the pitfalls that occur when not keeping the “power of 2” rule in mind while creating images. If you have any questions or advice, don’t forget to chime in on the forum!
Alex Jackson is an indie developer and the founder of Panc Interactive, 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: @pancinteractive. Check out his new game Segreta on iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and Amazon devices.