Priority 1 – Coffee

Project Management

After reading through the links in my previous post I'm feeling a bit more confident. At this point, I'm going to put up a list of tasks on my whiteboard to help me visualise where I'm going and make sure I have all the tools and resources I need now.

I've broken this down into a number of phases, with a list of tools and resources that I'll need for each phase. Referring back to my list from the last post, I see that things are starting to come together like this:

  • a tool to help me develop the code – App Studio and the SDK
  • a way to test what I'm building – Directly on my phone, and using the tools built into the SDK
  • some forum or method for my customers to contact me – Twitter/Email/Web/Windows Store comments
  • decide on if/how I will monetize my app - TBD
  • decide if I'm building for Phone, Desktop or both – I've scared myself off building for both phone and desktop, so will concentrate my efforts on the phone
  • a way to keep myself organized – OneNote/Project/Tasks

I'm still feeling quite disorganised, and resisting the urge to fire up a tool and begin developing. I think I understand the broad phases that I need to go through, but don't understand the detail. Time to plan things out in more detail.

I need to break down the phases into individual tasks that need to be completed, ideally in order. I've thought about a number of ways to do this:

OneNote - http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/onenote/

Advantages – Lightweight, I can access it easily on my phone, laptop, Surface and browser
Disadvantages – Won't help me with scheduling

Microsoft Project - http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/project/  

Advantages – 'Proper' project management, can do scheduling
Disadvantages – I'm not super familiar with the program, may add too much overhead to my project

Tasks/Whiteboard/Piece of Paper

I've discounted this option. As much fun as it is developing using the back of a napkin, I want to take this project a bit more seriously so will use OneNote.

At this point I am just throwing in everything I can think of, and putting it in a rough list. I'm sure this list will change as I go. From going through the process of this list I've already discovered that I need to think harder about the build phase. I know what I want my app to 'do' but I haven't really thought about how. That seems quite important.

Downloading…

So far the only thing I have identified that I need to install on my laptop is the SDK (to be used for more advanced development, and testing). I'm planning on starting with App Studio, but from everything I've read it looks like I'll end up in the SDK at some point.

Install is from here: http://dev.windowsphone.com/en-us/downloadsdk. I'm downloading the full SDK 8.0and it's asking for 3.63GB of space.

The installer did its thing for about 20 minutes and then asked for a reboot. I'll look into the other downloads and updates that are listed on the SDK Download page when I get closer to testing.

During my downloading I came across the Windows Phone Dev Center app (http://www.windowsphone.com/en-au/store/app/dev-center/2d3063c2-4b29-4e69-9c03-50b67b0e6aec)

This will help me track how my app is going (once it's published) and will also let me see user reviews. I'm adding this here now, and installing it on my phone, but I'm sure it will be much more useful when I get closer to publishing.