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Reading planner app

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by bramkaandorp, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    There is a plethora of reading planners for religious books, but a dearth of them for regular books, so I thought I'd try the App Requests page.

    The core functionality of the app is as follows.

    Input:
    • Book title
    • Name author
    • Book series name (optional)
    • Number of first page you will read*
    • Number of last page you will read
    • Days “off” (when you can’t/won’t read)
    • Also input, based on what you want to achieve**:
      • pages-per-day to read, or;
      • expected date when you finish reading the book.

    Output:
    The page number you need to reach today to achieve goal 1 or 2. It will also show you when you can be expected to finish reading, and the amount of pages you will read today.

    When you finish reading for the day, you will input the number of the page you finished reading, so that the app knows on which page you will start tomorrow.***

    The new day will not turn over automatically, because sometimes you might read past 00:00, and still want the page to count for the previous day.

    When you are ahead of schedule:
    1. if you chose a finish date, then the number of pages you have to read will lower (lower average pages to read to finish on time);
    2. If you chose an amount of pages per day to read, then the date will move forward (closer to the present) based on how much you’ve read ahead

    The reverse will happen if you’re behind schedule.

    (Optional)
    Keep a log of all reading days, with the pages to be on for each day, with the ability to save it with date of creation as a text file. The log will show the expected finish day, as well as the pages-per-day count.

    Notes:
    *In omnibuses, the second book might start on page 300. If the app assumes that 1 is always the starting point, then it will tell you that you have already read a certain amount of the book, even though you’re only interested in the portion you specified. This is also important when a book starts on page 5.

    ** You can change what the goal will be at any time, including which of the two goals (date or pages-per-day) you want to use.

    ***This as opposed to inputting the page you will read tomorrow, because that will conflict with the end of the book, since there won’t be any more pages to read, and the app would think that you would still have one page left to read; the last page.


    If nothing else, thanks for at least reading the post in full.
     


    #1 bramkaandorp, Jan 31, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016

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  2. I could give this a go.

    After a quick look I found an app called Reading Plan.

    I am assuming you thought this unsuitable?
     
  3. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Could you give me a link to the app you found? I'm afraid I had no luck in finding it.
     
  4. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I've tried navigating the app, but there's no English translation, so I'm guessing as to what everything does.

    After some lucky guesses I did manage to add a book, but you're right in that it doesn't have the planning features I mentioned.

    Still, it's always good to know that there are people out there trying to make such apps.
     
  5. Ok, I've been looking for a new project for a while so I will look at building something with the features you mentioned.

    I will let you know when the first version hits the market.
     
    bramkaandorp likes this.
  6. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I am eagerly awaiting the news.
     
  7. Screenshot_2016-02-11-22-12-58[1].png

    We're getting there.
     
    bramkaandorp likes this.
  8. Here is the beta tester program for the app:

    https://play.google.com/apps/testing/co.uk.NightshiftGroup.readingplanner

    Obviously not all of the features are implemented just yet, but the basics are there.

    There is also no explanation or walk through yet. I am hoping to add that next.

    Let me know what you think and be sure to submit any bugs you might find.
    The link is good for up to 1,000 people so if you k ow of others interested please share it.
     
  9. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I like what you've done so far. I would have never thought of using a database to pull information about the book I want to read.

    I did notice that the options in the drop down menu (for Planning Method) are very close to one another, so that I sometimes select the wrong one. I also always see a "hello world!" page when I exit the app.

    But considering that it's a first beta, it't already very functional.
     
  10. Fixed, and fixed.
    A new update will be live with these fixes soon.

    Anything else you've noticed?
    How intuitive is the process?

    Still to do:
    • Some form of tutorial/how to.
    • Days off (when you can’t/won’t read).
      • Ideally a calendar that you can select reading/not reading for each day on.
    • Notifications when you are getting close to missing a goal.
      • Will also need a user selected 'aggresivity' choice.
      • This will make sure users that don't want to be bombarded with reminders don't get them, and vice versa.
    • Expected finish date for "pages per day" planning method.
    • Support for other date formats (USA: mm/DD/yyyy).
    • Integration of series.
      • Unsure how this would work as the API I am using doesn't contain this information.
    • Day not turning over automatically to allow late night reading
      • Will probably take the form of a confirmation appearing in the hours 00:00 - 04:00.
      • This would ask if you want the logged read to be for today or yesterday.
    • Some form of support of books where you might not want to start at page 1.
      • e.g. an omnibus or research paper where the relevant information is on pages 234 - 347 etc.
    Anything I've missed?
     
  11. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I think you've got a handle on it pretty well (man, I have been reading too much Sherlock Holmes lately, my syntax is way too formal).

    A few things do come to mind:

    At the moment, the app only mentions that the daily target was met or not, but not by how much it was exceeded (it's always great to know when I've read past the goal, and by how much. It works as an incentive to read on, but also lets me know if I can afford to slack off the next day, if I choose to).

    It also only tells me how many pages I need to read, without telling me which page I'm reading towards.

    Something along the lines of "Target (page number) met/not met" and "Target (page number) exceeded by (amount of pages)" is what I have in mind, but I don't know how that would work out in the app, so whatever works best is always better.


    And something odd: When I update the page number and press "enter" on the keyboard, the quick page log stays on screen. I have to press the Back button to get it to go away.

    If easy (and not time consuming), the ability to add a custom book cover would also be great, but that is so low a priority that it barely registers as an annoyance, just me being nitpicky.

    Beyond that the apps is very easy to use, and very pleasant to use as well.

    ETA: After editing a variable of a book and pressing Save (and going to the main page of the app), when I want to exit the app itself, I first get the edit page again, and then the main page again, before I can actually exit the app. When I edit a book more than once, exiting the app gets me a succession of alternatingly the edit page and the main page multiple times before exiting the app.

    By exiting the app, I mean pressing the back button on the navigation bar.
     
    #12 bramkaandorp, Feb 14, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2016
    • Quick update page not closing/accepting when enter is pressed - Fixed
    • Random back key navigation issue - Fixed
    • Being able to edit the book thumbnail image - Planned
    • Extra information about exceeding the target - Added
    • Extra information about the target page number/exceeding the target
    Could be tricky this one.
    I had a go adding your suggestions but due to the space available half of it was lost of the screen.
    Expanding the box it sits in so it can drop to the next line results in non uniform box sizes so it looks odd.

    I was able to add some information about exceeding the target, but this might also be cut off on some devices.
    Its fine on my test device but its rather large.

    I think the best solution is to look at adding this page number information into the "edit book" screen.
    I will experiment a bit and see how best to do this.​

    This feedback is great btw, if more bits occur to you as you're using the app please keep it coming.
    You have no idea how often I have tried to build something and all the feedback I get is 'yea its good'.
     
  12. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Is it possible to use the circle as a place to put a number (I wouldn't know which number)? Would that even look good/make sense? Or would it just be confusing?
     
  13. bramkaandorp

    bramkaandorp Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    The fixes did work, by the way. The random navigation issue is gone.
     
  14. Few more updates should be making their way live shortly.

    Not sure how the tutorial piece will play if you already have books logged (normally this isn't possible). Apologies if it messes something up for you.
    • Some form of tutorial/how to. – Done
    • Being able to edit the book thumbnail image - Done
    • Easy access to the current page number - Done
    • Day not turning over automatically to allow late night reading - Done
      • Will probably take the form of a confirmation appearing in the hours 00:00 - 04:00.
      • This would ask if you want the logged read to be for today or yesterday.

    • Notifications when you are getting close to missing a goal. – In progress
      • Will also need a user selected 'aggresivity' choice.
      • This will make sure users that don't want to be bombarded with reminders don't get them, and vice versa.
    • Expected finish date for "pages per day" planning method.
    • Support for other date formats (USA: mm/DD/yyyy).
    • Integration of series.
      • Unsure how this would work as the API I am using doesn't contain this information.
    • Days off (when you can’t/won’t read).
      • Ideally a calendar that you can select reading/not reading for each day on.
    • Some form of support of books where you might not want to start at page 1.
      • e.g. an omnibus or research paper where the relevant information is on pages 234 - 347 etc.

    I am expecting to push this project out of beta in the next day or so. When this happens I will stop posting updates etc here and find somewhere else for anyone that wants to keep beta testing.

    I am sure the forum mods would prefer we stop hogging this topic :).
     
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