DOT Placards App and ERG: Quick Lookup Ebook Discontinued

DOT Placards App to Be Discontinued

With the release of the Emergency Response Guidebook 2016, the National Institutes of Health has released a free ERG 2016 app for Android and iOS. We have reviewed the new NIH app and found the app comprehensive, well-made, and fully featured.

With previous versions of the NIH app, based on the ERG 2012 content, we felt there were some presentation and search features that our app did better. But the new 2016 NIH app exceeds our own in both features and content. For example, the NIH app now includes the ability to map isolation distances from your current location using street or satellite views.

In light of this, DOT Placards and DOT Placards Plus will be discontinued and removed from Google Play around the end of 2016.

We greatly appreciate all our users and their support that has made DOT Placards our most popular app with over 50,000 installs. Thank you!

Please direct any inquiries to, however do note that regular support services for these products are also discontinued and you are encouraged to download the NIH app for up-to-date data.

We encourage you to contact us if you are interested in the technologies behind adapting complex publications such as the ERG into app and ebook forms. “Appraised” for $2,350, Sells for $6 [ A Domaining Update]

Sherprog Goes Domaining…

This winter, we’ve leapt into “domaining.” Domaining is the hobby or business of participating in the domain name aftermarket. 

Last week our first domain name auction on closed. Anne decided this winter to thin out her domain coffers, and the first auction to go live was a lot of two related domains: ($60, Estibot) and ($55, Estibot).

They were both English-language exact-keyword-match .com domains. It looked good to me. Continue Reading →

Publishing Apps on Google Play Versus Apple App Store

A Rage Comics Infographic

This is why, when you’re crossing the great platform divide and producing both iOS and Android versions of your app, you should trial run on Google Play first. Then, when all the kinks are worked out, you can submit it to the time-consuming Apple process. We find that if you need to make revisions to the app after publishing, the time involved in the Apple process adds up.

{Click image to embiggen}

publishing apps on google play versus apple itunes - a rage comics infographicPublishing an App on Google Play Versus the Apple App Store: a Rage Cartoon Infographic by your friends at Sherprog




WorkLight Flashlight App for Android

A Free Flashlight App for Android

That doesn’t collect or share your data

Get WorkLight at Google Play

Does the world need another free flashlight app?

We didn’t particularly think so either. But then you find out many flashlight apps are designed not as flashlights but as user information gathering devices so that your data can be resold to marketers. You also find a bunch of apps named dumb things like “World’s Brightest Ever Flashlight App!*”–as if the brightness didn’t depend on the phone’s hardware, but on the software…Gee…”marketing,” I guess…We were starting to think maybe the world did need a flashlight app.

So please join us in welcoming our latest app-bundle of joy into the world: WorkLight, a free flashlight app for Android. Continue Reading →

Android app development cross pollination

SnapToMe Plus iconToday I had the pleasure of pushing the new generation of our SnapTo apps to the Google Play Store. Our three apps, SnapToMe, SnapToMe Plus, and MyDumbBoard are all variations on a theme: give the new or very busy phone user the simplest possible way to snap a picture straight to his or her email inbox. The new Version 2.0 editions are a great demonstration of how the retail products of an Android app developer can benefit from custom app development projects and vice versa.

Frankly, it doesn’t take a lot of key strokes to email yourself a picture from your Android photo gallery. But if you are a novice user, that process is just one-more-thing-to-master. Or, if you are a busy retailer or seminar leader or real estate agent and you routinely need to send yourself pictures to document a problem or record a whiteboard or take note of an opportunity, any extra steps can turn should-be-easy into never-quite-got-it-done. Especially if you don’t always have connectivity and need to remember to do the mailing later when you get back in cell range.

The SnapTo apps all make taking one picture straight to your email inbox a two-click operation. And all but the free app make that work even if you don’t have connectivity when you take the picture.

The new versions of our three apps were inspired by contract Android app development we did this spring for CaptureBites, a Belgian company. Continue Reading →

SnapToMail App by CaptureBites: Automated Image Forwarding for Android

Sheridan Programmers Guild recently collaborated with CaptureBites of Belgium to produce their SnapToMail app for Android, now a free download on Google Play Apps.


SnapToMail App for AndroidThe core of CaptureBites’ SnapToMail, much like Sherprog’s own SnapTo product line, is the ability to take photos with a mobile device directly to an email address of your choice without using the device’s preloaded camera and email apps. It reduces the process to as few as two steps: 1) snap picture, 2) hit send.

This creates the opportunity for a streamlined, automated document flow for transport/shipping, warehouses, real estate, insurance claim adjustment, home inspection reporting, construction auditing, and crime scene investigation among other applications. SnapToMail can be a solution for any Android user who needs to email photos regularly, repeatedly, or in bulk.

This is how CaptureBites describes the app: Continue Reading →

Apps by the dozen: TimerRN is published

TimeRN screenshotYesterday, we published our 12th Android app: TimerRN. This app has been a long time coming, primarily due to my getting distracted by other projects.  Hokan worked on the first version; Matt did some major re-work after I tested it and figured out what worked and didn’t in the original design.

The original idea for this product actually came from a conversation I had with Mark Burke of Voalte in July, 2010.  Voalte describes itself as providing “compelling software solutions for healthcare institutions that solve communication problems at the point-of-care.”  They concentrate on iPhone- and iPad-based solutions but Mark was kind enough to spend a bunch of time on the phone with me, talking about Android apps for nurses, and, among other nuggets, threw out a suggestion that we implement a ‘drip timer’ app.  TimerRN is a bit more general than that first idea. Nurses can set multiple timers and alarms for IV drips, medicines that have to be dispensed outside the standard schedule, getting patients ready for transport, or even to when to take their next break.

It’s been a busy month but Matt helped me make the effort to get TimerRN published.  We’ve made it as good as we can internally; it needs users working with it to get better.  And it’s great fun to have an even dozen Android apps in the Android Marketplace.

Our apps are sticky! (And that’s a good thing.)

My friend Mark Thoney of Wyolution added a smile to my workweek when he emailed me a link to a USA Today story on how fleeting glory is for most phone apps.   The main point of the piece was no surprise to me.  I’ve long heard that many apps, especially games, get used only for a few hours or a few days after they are downloaded.  Frankly, as a developer, I’ve always found that one of the most discouraging of factoids.  Think of all the passion and labor that goes into even a simple app.

But one quote caught my eye.  Anindya Datta, founder of Mobilewalla, an ‘app analytics firm’ says that while “80% to 90% of apps are eventually deleted,” he considers any app that’s retained by 30% of downloaders to be “sticky.”

Guess what? By that measure, almost all of our apps are sticky!  I’d been feeling a bit down about the fact that ‘only’ half of the DOT Placards downloaders still have the app on their phone.  Guess I’m going to have to revise that emotion upward, eh?

I tossed our current download and install numbers into a spreadsheet: Continue Reading →

Updated: SnapToMe email delays and failures

Update:  22 Jan 2012

I’ve been using STM+ off and on over the holidays and it was always working well.  I took several big photos this morning and they appeared in my inbox very quickly.  And I never did get any support emails or negative comments in the Android Marketplace.

So whatever problem we were having for a while in December seems to have gone away.  Of course, the wise old tech support saying is:  Problems that go away by themselves come back by themselves.  So we’ll be monitoring the STM products’ performance carefully.

I use our two photo sending apps, SnapToMe and SnapToMe Plus, all the time in my own work.  I’m always scribbling something on a whiteboard and needing to save it or show it to someone.  Snap!  And just the other day, Matt and I put together a low-fidelity mockup of a new user interface with sticky notes and needed to send it to a customer for review.  Snap!

In the past week, I’ve had a couple of days where emails from SnapToMe Plus were delayed for up to 24 hours and emailing from SnapToMe simply failed outright.  We’ve narrowed this down to being pretty certainly an issue with our email hosting service and have begun researching alternatives.  But, frankly, it’s Christmas time and we’re also trying to take some dedicated time off to be with our families.

So, please, if you are experiencing problems with one of the SnapTo’s let us know at  We’d like to take our time, understand the problem more thoroughly, and be deliberate in our choice of what service to try next.  But if the products are working badly for a lot of users, we’ll do what we can to accelerate a solution.  Meantime, keep your eye out for an update to your app and, when you see one, please accept it.

Thanks for your patience and support.


DOT Placards celebrates 10,000 downloads

Transportation Placards

Version 1.0 of our DOT Placards product was released on 3 September, 2010. Today I checked in Android Developers Console and saw it has crossed the 10,000 download threshold. Huzzah!

The Android Marketplace doesn’t publish exact download numbers for consumers to see. Rather, it reports downloads as being within ranges such as < 10, 50-100, 1,000-5,000 and so on. But the bands get bigger as the counts go up. It gets to be a bigger and bigger deal to cross each threshold.

We’ve been in 5,000-10,000 band for a long time and, for a time, were stalling out a bit on attracting new users. Then we removed the ads feature. Showing ads had never done anything for revenue, had probably annoyed some users, and required extra permissions at app install time. Taking them out was a great decision.

Many thanks to Mark, whose brainchild the product was, and to Hokan, who built it.