We recently were a part of a project with what was, in many ways, a
typical successful startup. The company makes hardware for a niche
market, powered by their own firmware and driven by a suite of web
applications running both on a server and locally as
Electron apps. They make a great
product that is disrupting the space and they’re growing rapidly, both
in company size and number of users.
What started as a small integrated team has spun up to several groups
overseeing various aspects of the product and as that happened the
developers became somewhat siloed from the QA folks. Each group had
its own process for keeping the quality high in the face of rapid
growth, namely thorough unit tests on the development side and a
series of step-by-step documents used by a number of testers to
manually go through every page and every button of the web
applications. Releases were coming quickly and the testers were
spending hours upon hours methodically testing only to have to start
all over again when another release came out of development. They were
overworked and almost overwhelmed, and called Infinity for help.
Here at Infinity, one of our core precepts — coined by former
Infin-ite Shawn Moore — is the notion that “tickets are free”. The
idea is that you should never waste time wondering “should I make a
ticket for this?” Instead, just make the damn ticket! In the immortal
words of John Blutarsky, “it don’t cost nuthin’.”
With an opening paragraph like that, you’re probably expecting some
sort of listicle of all the ways adopting our “tickets are free” credo
will help make your software development efforts better and
turbocharge your coders to new heights of productivity. That is not
what you’re gonna get, however. Nope! Instead, I’m going to talk to
you about how tickets are free… because they’re not free like beer,
but instead are free like puppies. And then I’ll share ways to make
sure your freely created tickets are usefully propelling your project
forward, instead of bogging it down.
With an estimated 3.2 billion smartphone users in 2019, the mobile app
industry is growing and not showing any signs of slowing down. Along
with this growth in smartphone usage comes increased demands and
expectations from end users. Apps need to use the latest smartphone
features, be fast & easy to use. This is further complicated with the
need to develop for both Android and Apple smartphones as well as
tablets. For someone with an app idea, considering all these factors
can be a bit overwhelming. This is where Infinity Interactive steps
in. Infinity has extensive experience in the mobile app arena and can
help you identify the best approach for your app and target audience.
Today, companies are not just restricted to developing a native mobile
app. They can also build mobile web apps, progressive web apps, and
cross-platform apps. This post will cover the pros and cons of each
with the hope of giving a clear path for taking an app idea into app
At Infinity, we’ve been a fully remote, on-shore tech consultancy and
custom software development company since 2005 (founded in 1998), so a
lot of our friends and contacts have been asking us for advice on
effectively managing remote co-working. We thought it would be helpful
to share some of our tips and tricks from both the leadership and
Even on mobile, sometimes you need to show people a PDF. In your Xamarin Android app, for most situations, having the user download the document to view it outside of the app using Android's native document viewer is probably fine. But what if the design specifies displaying the document in the app? And what if that document is 100+ pages long? We recently ran into this here at Infinity Interactive and needless to say, displaying a PDF in your Xamarin Android app is not as straightforward as one might expect.
In the beginning, there were iOS, Android, and the Web. Entirely separate
platforms that had to be developed as such.
Then, along came Xamarin. Developers could write iOS and Android apps
using a single codebase, but we were still on our own for Web development.
Now, Uno has emerged. Building on top of Xamarin, it gives us the
power to write iOS, Android, Web, and even UWP applications using
shared logic and UI!
Cloud functions are a great way to run small programmatic services in the
cloud. They are easy to create and use, are very secure, and need little
maintenance. They even scale on-demand in a way that is very difficult to
achieve using regular servers.
About seven months ago, I started practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, a grappling
art founded in Brazil. Immediately after, I began comparing everything to it.
My kids started making fun of me: “Everything is Jiu-Jitsu for you, Dada.” And,
they were right. If I was reading, I’d say, “I’m grappling with the book.” If I
was cooking, I’d say, “I’m Jiu-Jitsuing food.” If my five-year-old daughter
asked me to help her cut her food during dinner, I’d say, “Just Jiu-Jitsu it.
Pin it down with your fork so it won’t move. Then, cut it.”
Here at Infinity Interactive, we are an entirely remote team. As such,
high availability of our communication tools is paramount to our
success. Our daily methods of communication include JIRA, email,
commit messages, and even, gasp, telephones. While these are
effective at doing their job, they are not a replacement for that
“human” feel you get when you go into an office and have the ability
to have group and individual conversations with your co-workers. For
that piece of the puzzle, we use Slack.
System monitoring. A pretty vital part of any network management.
That is, unless you're one of the few who live for the visceral thrill
of flying blind. For the rest of us partial to our lack of heart condition,
an ounce of prevention is worth ten thousand gallons of Saturday morning
In this blog entry, I'll go through the exercise of putting
together a simple but working and easily
extensible system monitoring setup leveraging common pieces of technology.