As the year draws to a close, its time again to look back at what we built in 2018! It was an interesting year for Glowdot to be sure. This year we took on fewer projects, and instead focused on projects with more medium- to long-term potential.
But before we got into those larger projects, to start the year off, we released an app called Scrawl (available on iOS). Scrawl was a project we developed over the course of a single month, with the intent of demonstrating what could be achieved in a single month of development, from concept, through back- and front-end development, and design, all the way through launch on the Apple app store. In the end, we released a fully featured, albeit simple, social media app in very short order.
But for the longer term, Scrawl was intended as a showcase of everything we’ve learned from developing social networks over the past 15 years. Indeed, Glowdot launched it’s first large scale social network — the now defunct photo sharing site Glowfoto — back in 2004! Since then we’ve developed dozens of applications with social features, and we’ve learned a ton about the best ways to develop fully-featured, scalable, extendable, multi-platform applications. When we developed Glowfoto 15 years ago, we built it on the then-popular LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP). These days we tend to build our backends on Node.js powered by MongoDB. These two core platforms could not be more different, and the means by which we develop ubiquitous features like media sharing, likes, follows, messaging, etc is completely different from the old relational database method. We’ve truly mastered our craft in this area — for the second time!
And Scrawl is our simple, humble demonstration of that knowledge.
Accenture Sky Journey
Shortly after the release of Scrawl, LinkedIn released their list of 2018’s Top Companies to Work For. On that list was one of our early clients: Accenture. And what was one of the reasons LinkedIn chose Accenture? Their first ever game, Accenture Sky Journey — a game developed here at Glowdot in 2012-2013. It was amazing to see one of our biggest projects featured so prominently — especially a full six years after its release! In today’s mobile world, six years is an eternity, so we couldn’t be more proud of that recognition.
One of a very select few client projects we took on this year was the chat app GlobeChat. GlobeChat is a messaging app that translates messages into each user’s language in real-time, as the conversation progresses. It is an amazingly useful product, and a very complex one. Glowdot built up a scalable infrastructure and data warehousing system to handle this complicated chat system, and then built the iOS and Android client apps. GlobeChat is still in development while in public beta, and the road map for this product is exciting and impressive. Keep an eye on this one!
Which brings us to the largest project we took on this year: Graphite Comics. Graphite is a free-to-read, subscription based comic book platform with two principle goals: to bring the entire world’s library of graphical content to a top-tier platform, and to modernize the way people consume comic books and other graphical content.
Graphite is one of those products I personally love to work on. On the surface, its a fairly simple application: browse comics, open them, and read them. But under the hood is a wildly complex system capable of serving million of readers, delivering billions of pages of content and managing subscriptions coming from a variety of sources.
We premiered Graphite at the 2018 San Diego Comic Con where we met with the biggest names in the industry, and we’ve already amassed an intimidating library of content from some of the most incredible, prestigious names in comics.
Graphite is still in public beta, so you can download it now and take it for a spin, but we anticipate our official launch to happen sometime around March of 2019. Stay tuned!
More to come….
Although we are going into 2019 with a fairly full plate, we still have bandwidth to take on a few projects next year. As always, we want to focus our efforts on helping early stage startups get their mobile products to market in this ever-increasingly competitive market. If you want to discuss your project with us, reach out now and schedule a meeting with us as soon as possible. We’d love to discuss your project with you and help you get your idea out to market in 2019!