Before we get too deep into January I figured I should do a 2013 wrap up post. This was a pretty big year for me as I entered the Windows Phone developer community.
At this time last year I was deep into the Windows Phone 8 SDK working on CoPilot GPS, it was a very exciting time for me and my colleagues at ALK Technologies. The SDK was very easy to work with so every week, hell almost every day, I was able to see new features and improvements in the port of CoPilot GPS. In February we were able to show off the app at Mobile World Congress and the response we saw on WPCentral and other blogs was very encouraging.
As the app entered QA and Beta testing a few months later I found that I didn’t want to stop developing Windows Phone apps. I had started listening to the Windows Developer Show podcast, and hearing about the success of Indie developers and programs like DVLUP inspired me to start developing my own apps in my free time. My first app Read to the Younglings never really took off, but I did have some success with my second app SpeechJammer. Even with the limited success of my first apps though I was hooked, I continued updating those two apps and began creating new ones.
It was around this time I decided to start blogging and speaking at user groups. It’s been a great experience for me, and I really hope that some of my posts/talks have helped other developers. I plan to continue in 2014, hopefully more often. I plan to write more posts about my experiences working on CoPilot GPS using C++/CX as there doesn’t seem to be as much content available for C++ windows phone developers, compared to C#/XAML development. So far I’ve only done 2 user groups for relatively small crowds, so I’d like to continue this as well, and will hopefully challenge myself by speaking in front of larger audiences.
My year really got exciting when I released Car Starter though (now renamed to Car Dash). I was able to get the app featured on WPCentral multiple times, and began seeing some fairly large download numbers
Even more exciting then the download numbers though was winning 2 of the Nokia Create Mini Missions with Car Starter. I won the Mini Missions by updating the app first to use the Nokia Music API with voice commands, and then by adding enhancements to the app for Big Screen Windows Phones like the Lumia 1520. I’m still humbled that Nokia chose my app, and I’m thrilled at the prospect of winning the Grand Prize and being able to take my wife to Spain for Mobile World Congress.
On top of all that, I got to be a guest on the Windows Developer Show to talk about CoPilot GPS. It was a lot of fun talking to the Lowdermilk brothers, and hopefully I wasn’t too boring to the listeners of that episode.
That’s about it, 2013 has been a very exciting year for me in the world of #wpdev. Thanks to everyone who has supported me personally and professionally, and I wish you all a wonderful 2014!