02 September 2016

MacAnagram - 29 years in the making!

A new take on an old Word Game has finally been published after 29 years in the making!

MacAnagram, the anagram Word Game for Mac and PC doesn’t just confound you with some cryptic clues, it’s also slightly rude if you get it wrong! It started life in 1987 on my original Macintosh Plus which ran Apple's amazing scripting language, HyperCard! Sadly, Apple abandoned development of HyperCard. The functionality of HyperCard was picked up and extended with a different product and company called RunRev. That as then transformed into LiveCode which is now based in Scotland.

After a major re-design to comply with this modern programming language and to make it Internet compatible, MacAnagram has taken on a new lease of life and is available for you to enjoy!

The screenshot shows how the game provides a random scrambled word based on categories selected! A free hint is provided and all other help is 'purchased'. Clues are mostly cryptic to increase the challenge and it provides a randomized 'slightly rude retort' should you get anything wrong! The dictionaries can either be web-based (most current) or on-board which is updated with each new release of the App. From an Educational point of view, once the answer is revealed, an option to check it out on Wiki pops up in its built-in browser.

You can get it here and read more about it here.

01 April 2016

Capture Those Precious Memories

Alan Stenhouse used LiveCode to quickly build an app that allowed him to capture some precious memories with his father. I'll let Alan tell the story.

"One day when I was going through some old photos with my father, I was getting him to tell me something about them - who was there, where it was, when etc. I realised that I needed to record this easily and store it with the photo. Initially I just thought I wanted to take notes about each photo, but realised it would be great to record his voice recollections as well. Anyway, that afternoon + evening I made the first cut of an app which worked out quite well and I used it the next day successfully with my Dad."

In the screenshot you can see the the main palette window showing the image list with various controls at the top and a text area for taking notes at the bottom. Beside it is the image viewing window. 

The app also allows you to play back the images in a slideshow, automatically playing the spoken memories and displaying any written notes. 

Alan has created an iPad version of the app. He's called it Re-Collections

28 March 2016

Co-ordinating Timezones

Pat M, known as 7Leven, is an intern at a company called ThoughtSTEM LLC in California. ThoughtSTEM is a company that for a while taught kids to program in the San Francisco area. They would use innovative and fun methods to teach the kids like helping them Mod in Minecraft. Currently, they are developing a video game by the name of CodeSpells. In the game the user, a wizard, uses code to make all their spells.
Pat helps run the forums, run contests for the forum users, and relays information to and from the users. There is also a monthly update where the users can talk to the developers over a live streaming service. 

There are many users from many different locations around the US and other countries. So keeping up with the time zones is difficult. As a result, he made an application with LiveCode that always has the correct timezone that correlates to the developers location. This application also counts down to the the time for the update livestream the application and opens the livestream in the user's default browser. 

The app connects to a MySQL database and gets the time of the update each month from that database. Pat created a second application that updates the database to which the users' applications connect. 

12 October 2015

Dissect an Animal Without Harming It

Over 20 years ago, Stu of Duncan Software, wrote Dry Labs Plus. It provides a highly realistic simulation of the dissection of a number of animals including a fetal pig, a frog, a rat, a perch, a crayfish, and an earthworm. It has been used to educate many students and saved the lives of countless small animals.

Dry Lab Plus in action

Stu has continually refreshed Dry Lab Plus over those 20 years and authored various versions of it in different tools including Toolbox, Authorware, Director and Flash.

The latest version has been, to quote Stu, 'happily' re-written using LiveCode. It runs on OS X and Windows.

You can find out much more about it at Duncan Software.

13 January 2015

Program Your Watch

Roger Eller didn't want a smart watch set just to sync with his phone, he also wanted the opportunity to explore programming one with LiveCode. After thorough research, he bought a "SmartQ Z Watch" which runs Android 4.4 kitkat.  The watch had an almost immediate effect, "Having the full Android OS on your wrist, makes you feel like you're from the future."

When the watch is connected to a computer, it is seen as a generic Android Tablet. So programming it from LiveCode really was a case of "Plug & Play". I'll let Roger tell the rest of his story:

"Since the device is primarily worn as a watch, I wanted to put together an analog watch face. So I grabbed a LiveCode script off the Rev Online user contributions site.  I simply scaled the stack to fit a 240 x 240 pixel screen, and built an apk.  WOW!  It worked!"

"So now I'm hooked, and being a Star Trek nerd, my first watch app obviously had to be a LCARS watch."


"Now that my watch brain has started ticking, I'll be making more tiny, tiny apps. It would be nice to support the official Android Wear devices in the Google Play Store, but we need Runtime Revolution to add support for their new API.  That said, the SmartQ Z Watch is still a wonderful device, and best of all, it works with LiveCode - out of the box."

02 December 2014

Rewrite a Multimedia Game

Tom Bodine of the eponymously named Bodine Training Games LLC used LiveCode for a complete rewrite of the company's multimedia game show template, Game Show Presenter. The quiz software is used by teachers and trainers to add interactive fun to reviews and learning.

According to Tom, "The rewrite of Game Show Presenter in LiveCode only took about a quarter of the time needed to originally develop the product."

19 November 2014

14 November 2014

Report Personal Accidents

Have you ever had a personal accident at a company site (workplace, shop, training unit), not completed an accident record before your left the premises and wish you had when you got home? David Morgan used LiveCode to build an app that let's you make the report once you get home. It's called Accident Book.

You enter the details, sign the report and it then gets emailed to the company.

David said "133 workers and 70 members of the public were killed in UK workplace-related accidents last year. There is talk of fining companies in the UK £20m per workplace death. Yet even some of the largest companies fail to train staff in Health & Safety or use up-to-date data-protection compliant accident books. I thought a free Android app accident book following the latest HSE guidance would be useful to society."

"So I built a very quick, free accident book for business using LiveCode. I found a lot of the code solutions on the LiveCode Forum and Websites. I simply joined the ideas together."

"It's not perfect but it took about 2 weeks altogether. Most of the time was spent re-working ideas and trying to work with a scrolling app on Windows at 0.25 scale."

You can find it in Google Play Store.

09 November 2014

Team Organisation and Time Tracking

Roberto Trevisan of TD Software used LiveCode to help his small business customers organise and track how their employees time was spent in a cost effective manner. He built TCal, a time tracking calendar, that records events, deadlines and working hours on companies' own management databases. It works with a company's existing database which could be running in FileMaker Pro, Microsoft Access or MySQL.

The Tcal client allows employees to manage their events and times through a graphical calendar interface.

The TcalServer manages company shared calendars and interfaces to the company's own management database.

Tcal not only runs on both Microsoft Windows and Mac OSX, it is also available in both Italian and English. It is a testimony to both Roberto's development skills and the breadth and flexibility of LiveCode.

09 February 2014

Exercise Your Right Brain

Andrew Walters wants to help everyone be a genius at maths. Just as you need to train your body to run faster become an Olympic sprint champion, you need to train your mind to think faster to become a maths genius. Andrew developed Maths Trainer in LiveCode to do just that.
Maths Trainer tests and helps you improve your mental ability by letting you play fun games to keep your mind fit. The games become progressively more difficult to improve your brain performance.

Andrew originally developed the app on his desktop and said "I was blown away by how easily and quickly it went over to mobile. With a little bit of work I was able to get a fun and full functioning app running on my phone."

Sadly, it is no longer available in the play store.

28 September 2013

Give the Power to Arrest

This electronic version of the training course "Power to Arrest" from the Department of Consumer Affairs of the Bureau of Security and Investigative Services of the State of California was created using LiveCode by Alejandro Tejada Capellan for Franco Security Consulting Group.

This training course provides the minimum standards of instruction for security personnel. It is a self-instructional course designed to educate the trainee to carry out his or her duties with caution and within the confines of law.

Completing successfully this course is necessary to obtain the Security Guard's Registration Card, required for a person to serve the functions of a security guard or patrol person. This course is intended to be a learning experience as well as a guide to understanding.

24 August 2013

Help people learn French

Alain Vézina set up a small language learning centre for adults more than 20 years ago. At that time, he looked for activities on computer to help students and didn't find much. So he started computing to create the kind of apps of which he dreamt. He started with HyperCard, continued with SuperCard and for several years used LiveCode.

One of those apps he developed in LiveCode is named A-mots-couverts. It is a new type of language game, a kind of crisscross puzzle in varied, interesting texts. The user consolidates and enhances their knowledge and abilities in all aspects of French. There are numerous skills, abilities and knowledge put to the test: listening ability, memorising, reading, text analysis (main idea, secondary ideas), usual spelling, grammatical spelling, syntax, vocabulary, synonyms, antonyms, words of the same family, conjugation, tense conformance, phrases and expressions. It stirs up the user’s interest in learning French in all its forms: oral, read and written. There are three difficulty levels and at the highest difficulty level, challenges are issued to the strongest students.

"It is extremely educational. It's very addictive. I love it" according to Delia Dyer, one of Alain's students.

A-mots-couvert is available for Mac, Windows and iPad. Learn more about A-mots-couvert

It's in both the iOS AppStore and the Mac AppStore.

08 July 2013

Develop an interactive electronic textbook

Devin Asay has been teaching introductory programming to college students using LiveCode for over ten years. There was no textbook available, and he felt that static web pages were ineffective, so he created an interactive "electronic textbook", in LiveCode of course, for his students that teaches the fundamentals of programming and the LiveCode environment. It features interactive examples in each lesson, self-scoring quizzes to check comprehension, downloadable example stacks, an assignment download and upload feature, user progress tracking, and more. Students love this innovative learning tool, and teachers love the way it helps them give feedback and track students' progress.

05 July 2013

Convert MediaWiki XML to HTML

Pascal Lehner wrote an App to convert MediaWiki XML to HTML. It translates the XML exported from MediaWiki to single externally available HTML pages. These HTML pages can then be easily displayed on a website.

Pascal modestly told me "Even though I am a new developer, it took me just a few days to write and debug it."

Note: Whilst the UI is in German, the code is commented in English.

26 June 2013

Help People Keep Safe at Sea

Adam Hyde is a volunteer member of Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue (RCM-SAR), a non-profit organisation providing marine search and rescue off the coasts of British Columbia, Canada. He had the idea for an App that would help distressed amateur sailors to know what to do in most emergency situations. He didn't have any programming experience and couldn't afford to get somebody else to write the App.

He couldn't realise his dream until he came across LiveCode. I'll let Adam tell the rest of the story:

"The App was approved first time by Apple thanks to LiveCode. Even more amazing was that I essentially had a working first version in less than two months, working part-time with no prior programming experience. I spent the next three months dealing with legal and content issues which held up the release. During that time I just kept improving things."

"We truly believe that our App will help save lives.  All the information is there for a distressed boater to know what to do in most emergency situations and have that information right on the phone they have in their pocket."

Take a look at Adam's App.

02 June 2013

Code an App store accepted game in a week

Dave Probert wrote a complete iPad game (from idea to App store submission) in just a week using Livecode.  The actual approval process took longer than the time it took to write the code!

The game is HexThello - a 2 player boardgame based on the 'Reversi/Othello' type of rules, but using a hexagonal grid instead of the usual squares.  This gives it an added extra two directions of action and requires a little more thought during play.  The game has three modes: two player, one player, and even no player - the program plays itself.

Dave explained "LiveCode provides a medium that was quick to produce a prototype of the game, and then to enhance and develop the final working product in just a few days.  The cleaning up and testing was another couple of days.  For the most part it was quite a painless process.  For anyone out there who is looking at creating a 2D game and wants a lot of control over the precise action, then Livecode is a good solution."

It's in the AppStore.

17 May 2013

Help people express their feelings.

Phil Jimmieson wrote In My Shoes in LiveCode. It is a computer package for Macintosh and Windows computers that helps professionals communicate with children and learning disabled adults about their experiences, views, wishes and feelings, including potentially distressing experiences such as illness and abuse in home, educational and other settings. The interviewer sits alongside the child and assists, guides and interacts with them through a structured interview process. Trainees learn how to use the In My Shoes computer-package and structured interview approach, as well as building on their skills in communicating with children. In My Shoes has a sound research base and has been sponsored by the Department of Health/DfES and others. It is useful for psychologists, social workers, child psychiatrists, other mental health staff, health workers, educational workers and specialists in forensic services.

24 April 2013

23 April 2013

Spend time with your patients not entering data

Peter M Brigham, a psychiatrist, used LiveCode to reduce the time he spent entering data into a web-based system and, as a result, spend more time concentrating on his patients.

I'll let Peter tell his story. "Our group practice recently had to change to an electronic medical record and I had to stop using the LiveCode-based practice management tool I had been developing and using for 20 years. The new software is web-based, and extremely cumbersome and frustrating. I put together a little utility to facilitate writing notes that is being used especially by the other psychiatrists and prescribers in the practice. It allows storage and easy access to snippets of text, and provides a shortcut for writing certain prescriptions. It took me under 2 hours in LiveCode to get the basic functionality written, and then another few hours to clean up the interface, handle details like text fonts and opening and closing routines, and write a help text. It then took 5 minutes to turn it into a standalone for Windows and post it for others to use. I had it done before the end of the first week the new software was rolled out."

"This illustrates one of the unmatchable virtues of LiveCode — a 'non-programmer' can rapidly create a custom piece of software tailored to the exact needs of the user, since the non-programmer is the user."

21 April 2013

Teach the fundamentals of electronics

Basic Electronics Stage 1 was written by Geoff and Dave Probert in LiveCode for both iPads and Androids. 

It aims to teach the fundamentals of electricity and electronics to anyone starting on the exciting path to Technology. It is just the first in a series of apps to be written over the next couple of years.  In fact Stage 2 is currently in preparation, targeted for release in June.

The texts are written in English and in Thai, with simple switching between the two languages.

Find out more.

20 April 2013

Teaching Law

David Johnson has been using LiveCode to develop legal learning games for use by law students at New York Law School.

19 April 2013

Make an art app for kids

When John Lally, a professional 3D animator, wanted to try his hand at app development, he found himself searching for a development environment that would be simultaneously intuitive, flexible, and robust. Although he had some scripting experience from building animation rigs, he did not have experience with Apple's Xcode. He found LiveCode to be the perfect blend of easy to use drag-and-drop UI elements and expansive scripting environment that could accommodate the complex hybrid solutions that his app required. The result was "Macaroni Art", recently released on Amazon for the Kindle Tablet Series, and on iTunes as a Universal iOS app.

You can get it from the AppStore and Amazon.

17 April 2013

Develop a web aggregator

Scott McDonald developed the LiveCode Super Site to simplify finding the latest questions and answers about LiveCode. He was able to quickly write a simple "screen scraping" stack on his Windows 7 laptop that gets information from the web from Stack Overflow, Use-LiveCode mailing list and the RunRev Forums. He then turned it into a standalone application, built for OS X, and runs it on his Mac Mini media server. After processing the data every hour (which is straightforward with the string processing capabilities built into LiveCode), his app uploads the refreshed html pages via ftp to the server hosting the site. Scott enters the blog entries by hand, but said "if the number of LiveCode related blogs increases I will automate that part too!"

16 April 2013

Learn the Cyrillic alphabet

Devin Asay used LiveCode to build his first iOS app. Drawing on his academic background in Russian, Devon created a Cyrillic alphabet tutor for iPad. It includes letter cards for each letter, knowledge checks and games to help the user test visual recognition of the letters.

15 April 2013

Create icons

Jan Schenkel developed IconBadger using LiveCode is an in-house utility for his colleague user experience designers. The company had purchased a large set of icons, but they were still missing some for their flagship application. Thanks to Jan's tool, they can now quickly create additional icons by combining database 'table' icons and function 'badge' symbols.

14 April 2013

Simulate intra-galatic radio waves

Roger Quay developed SETIsyncProb in LiveCode for the iPad. It is an accurate visual simulation of the synchronicity problem that exists when intelligent civilisations try to detect one another. Roger donated his app to the SETI Institute so that all proceeds go to them.

13 April 2013

Build a complete chat system

ChatRev is a server/client chat system, similar to IRC (but much simpler), developed in LiveCode. It was made almost ten years ago by Björnke von Gierke as a proof of concept. Since then he updated it regularly and it is still used daily by him and a few other people to chat about LiveCode and the world.

11 April 2013

Graph production data straight from a database

Roger Eller uses LiveCode and Charts Engine* to produce production graphs such as this directly from a database:

* Charts Engine is a LiveCode Library from Björnke von Gierke. It is currently available from the RunRev Marketplace

10 April 2013

Create QR Codes

John Craig uses LiveCode to directly generate QR codes.

More information.

Note: The displayed image includes the text "1001 things to do with LiveCode".