The Unfollow AppFeb 12, 2014
I recently released The Unfollow App for Android. This app has a long history with me. I started it over a year ago, and then abandoned it. I hate to leave things unfinished, and I wanted a project where I could learn about things like push notifications and in-app purchases, so I decided to finally buckle down and push this app through the door. Needless to say, it’s with great relief that I can finally post this blog entry!
The Unfollow App is fairly simple. It finds out who’s not following you back on twitter and notifies you when someone unfollows you. I plan on adding features in the future, but I wanted to get a first version out quickly. I like dealing with data, especially seeing what insights can be obtained from social data. The future possibilities of what can be done with this data reminds me of some of the research that I was exposed to when doing my graduate school work.
It may seem strange that I would release an app using the twitter api, a notoriously unreliable and non-developer friendly service, but keep in mind that I’m trying to create a lifestyle business not the next big thing. I’m also crazy enough to build something that relies on another companies api. Part of my goal for this app was to create a general framework with which I can easily build an app that interfaces with any third-party api in order to aggregate data and provide insights. I plan on writing a more technical blog post about this later.
I’m hoping that 2014 will be the year of shipping products for me. Over the next few months I plan on releasing a series of apps. I spent a lot of 2013 learning. I learned Android programming, web development using Backbone.js, and gained more experience with backend programming using python and Flask. Now I get to apply what I learned to my own products.
Having recently read rudedogg’s blog post about creating 12 products in 12 months and feeling very inspired, I plan on doing something similar. I’m doing a “12 for 12” but with Android apps. Some of them will be similar since I’ll be reusing the framework I created for The Unfollow App. I’m also hoping that releasing a series of apps for managing your social media accounts will provide opportunities for cross-promotion.