Version 1.1 of Jaded Art is now available to download for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. Version 1.1 adds albums to organize your favorite images, an improved view of your favorites (for iOS 6 or greater... sorry iOS 5.1.1 users), and a slideshow mode (of your favorites or of random images). Download now!
Version 1.1 of Jaded Art is ready for testing. I just need some beta testers! Version 1.1 is mostly improvements for storing, managing, and viewing your favorite images. You will be able to arrange favorites by albums, import and export individual albums (or all of your favorites), and view favorites in slideshows. The screen with the favorites has also been greatly improved (at least if you are running with iOS 6 or above... sorry iOS 5 users).
Becoming a beta tester won't require much work on your part. You'll need to install Apple's TestFlight app, click on a link in an email, and then TestFlight will help you install the beta. Just report back any problems you have (you can do this from within TestFlight) including major bugs (e.g. something isn't working, or the app crashed) and things that just don't look or work right (e.g. it isn't obvious how to use something or the layout just looks wrong somewhere, etc.).
Once testing is underway for version 1.1, I have big plans for version 2.0 (which include Apple Watch compatibility and better social integration).
If you are interested in becoming a beta tester, please email us at email@example.com. Please mention the iOS device type you'd be using to do the testing (e.g. 4th gen iPad, iPhone 4s, etc.) and your preferred email address for contact. Only iOS 8 devices can do beta testing (though the update, once released, will work all the way back to iOS 5.1.1).
It was perhaps very presumptuous of me to create an app named Jaded Art. After all, I'm not an artist (at least not in any sense that I would consider someone an artist). So, why did I name it that? I think that this is an app that can be used to create an art by someone who is an artist. Heck, even someone who isn't an artist could use this app to create art. However most people, like myself, will still be able to use this app to create pretty or interesting pictures. Personally, I feel that the world could use more interesting and pretty pictures.
So what is art then? These ramblings are my own opinions of course... I hope I don't offend anyone too much... I feel that art is something created by an artist. In other words, I feel that it's the creator that determines whether or not something is art more than the actual result. Of course an artist that puts no effort into something might come up with something that isn't art, and a non-artist that puts a lot of effort into something can create art (at which point, perhaps that individual has become an artist?). An artist could take something like a chewed piece of gum and wrapper and turn it into a piece of art (or part of a larger artwork). An inspired non-artist could turn that chewed gum and wrapper into trash (hopefully disposed of properly).
At this point, I don't think I'm ready to even try to define what distinguishes an artist from a non-artist. I most certainly fall into the latter category, though. So what do you think? Do you consider yourself to be an artist? Do you feel you can judge what is and isn't art?
Apple approved version 1.0 of Jaded Art today. I'm going to wait a couple of days to release it though so I can maybe have a web site or two review it. It went from 'In Review' to 'Pending Developer Release' (e.g. approved) in about 3 hours. I thought it would take a lot longer than that, but this was a nice surprise.
Version 1.1 is coming along nicely. 1.1 has albums to arrange your favorites, you can do a slideshow of favorites, and you can import / export an album of favorites (instead of importing / exporting individual images). I'm going to try to make the favorites screen look a little nicer though. Right now, I use a simple table format with a small version of the image and the date it was added (one of each per line in the table). I'm going to change it to be a grid of images instead (I don't know why I thought the date added was interesting in the first place, but I was wrong and I'm going to remove it). I'll be soliciting beta testers soon (maybe the end of this week or sometime next week).
I submitted Jaded App to Apple for review this morning. Hopefully there won't be too many issues and the app will be available for download in about 2 - 3 weeks.
I've started working on the next big update. In the next version, you'll be able to group your favorites into categories. You'll be able to import and export whole categories (instead of one picture at a time like in the initial release) and you'll be able to export all of your favorite images. This should be a good way of sharing groups of images with friends. I'll also try to add a slideshow feature that will let you view all of your images from a category (or all your favorites) one at a time (either manually advancing the images or cycling through them on a timer).
The idea behind this app is pretty simple. You are shown a selection of computer generated images and you choose one of them. The chosen image is then altered to produce a new selection of images which you can once again choose. The new images are generated with genetic algorithms (see http://www.karlsims.com/papers/siggraph91.html if you want details and to see the original inspiration for this app). If you choose images with a certain goal in mind, then theoretically you can get closer and closer to your goal with each choice. Your goal may be to produce something artistic, make a cool background image, or if you're like my brother-in-law, you just want to see if you can get it generate something that's orange.
Back in 1994 at Carnegie Mellon, I worked on implementing something like this with another student (Eugene Gan, now Dr. Eugene Gan). In addition to just have the user pick images, we also added a little bit of artificial intelligence (AI) to attempt to have the computer choose the most artistic image out of the nine that we displayed. Back then, we were running the program on some fairly serious hardware (high end workstations, not PCs) and it was very slow.
For over a decade now, I've been wanting to redo this on modern hardware to see how fast it would go on low end hardware. That's one of the main reason I started Jaded Bucket, LLC., so that I could write this for iOS devices (including older devices like 1st gen iPad, 4th gen iPod touch, and iPhone 3gs). Jaded Art doesn't have the AI that the original did (though it may in a future update), but it does a bit more than our original version did. In addition to purely mathematically generated images, you can include a photo as part of the math. What you can do with the photo isn't as sophisticated as what you can do with those apps that make you look bald or older (okay, sophisticated may not be the right word for those apps :), but you can get some interesting effects on images. Jaded Art also allows you to share the image (though email, tweet, Facebook post, airdrop, etc.) and keep a list of favorites, so you can share the results (or save it somewhere if you plan on using it for a logo, etc.).
I currently have two beta testers for this app. Once I get more feedback, I'll be submitting the app to the store. The only problem that I'm aware of at the moment is that the app is very memory hungry (it takes a lot of memory to generate these images!) so it occasionally dies because it doesn't free up memory fast enough. After it's submitted to Apple for final testing and release, I plan on adding some more social features to the app (like sharing your favorites as a collection and seeing your favorites or someone else's favorites in a slideshow format). I'd also like to make an Apple Watch version of it that can do a little bit of the image evolution process, but would mainly focus on slideshow presentation (which seems to be the best way to deal with the tiny size of the watch screen).
The app is going to be free, supported by ads (I'm going to use iAds), so anyone with an iOS device made in the last four years can try it out.
What would you use an app like this for? Would you try to generate art? Design a logo? Make silly pictures? Something completely different?
In case you're wondering about the name Jaded Bucket, I didn't choose the name because I'm actually jaded, nor do I have a bucket that is actually jaded (though I have one bucket that looks a little sad, but that's another story). I picked the company name based on my initials (JB). I chose about 20 or so words that started with the letter J and about 30 or so words that started with the letter B and ran through them all, looking for a name that was short, memorable, easy to spell, and a little bit whimsical. My first choice was Jam Bridge, but that was already taken, so the next best name I could come up with was Jaded Bucket.
I also decided to use Jaded in product names (at least initially) and in the name of this blog. Like the company name, this isn't an attempt to make the apps seem jaded, and it's not an attempt to be deep. It's just easier to remember the product names if you remember the company name and vice versa.
So, if you came here searching for deep meaning in the name (or in the blog), then sorry. Although I do occasionally have deep thoughts, I'm rarely able to articulate them.
I plan to use this section for blog primarily to write about the apps I'll be working on in addition to writing a bit about related topics. Of course I'll be putting announcements here as well about app availability, etc.
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