Better Living Through Software

I’m getting ready to release my second app with Quiet Spark and it occurs to me that in both cases I created something that attempts to solve a problem I’ve personally encountered. While I can, and do, write software that I personally won’t use, I feel like I can write with just a little more confidence when it’s something that affects me personally.

The first app we created was to help my son with spelling. Not just to help him, but my wife too. There were so many times I came home to Susie and Aaron frustrated over spelling homework. Super Speller was created specifically to make it easier for them to work on spelling homework.

The next one is for me. While I’ve never been formally diagnosed with OCD, it would come as no surprise if I were. Whatever it is I’m focused on at the moment, and you can go back through my blog and discover what those things were, has my complete attention and I tend to lose sight about all of the other things I should be paying attention to as well. I’ve tried and failed on several occasions to find some way to prioritize, and keep visible, all of the various things I should be thinking about.

I want to maintain a healthy weight and exercise. I want to cut back and eventually quit smoking. I want to make sure I’m saving enough for retirement, getting enough sleep, spending time writing, but not neglecting my family, and play. And it would be nice to post something here more than once a year. So I’ve created an app that help me achieve those goals. I can dump all those things into the app and set targets for each. And I can tell the app something like: for each hour I spend on work or projects at home, adjust the amount of time I’m allowed for R & R. Stuff like TV and video games. I wouldn’t say I’m cured, but it really does seem to help keep me focused where I need to be. And I can go back in time and look at all of these various activities so it’s also a visual diary of sorts. Of course I’m biased, but I really love it.

My wife uses it too. She tracks all kinds of crazy stuff, but some of it is extremely important information. For example, my son suffers from migraines and each time he has one she notes the date, time, and whatever additional information might help use discover the source of his headaches.

It’s been a big help and we’ve actually opened up beta testing recently so if it sounds like something that would interest you, let us know!