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Jose Tomas Gonzalez
Jose Tomas Gonzalez

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Mr. Dalton, the story of an impossible App

After about two months of reading articles from i finally registered and gathered motivation for writing my own article.

Prepare yourself because the following lines will be the Hello World of Hello Worlds, the always-true-condition in your while function, the correct indentation in your python script. So hold on to your standing desk and prepare to be amazed.

OK, maybe the hype was too much but i'm committed to share a fun and long story that just got on the road again this past Friday.

How Mr. Dalton was born...

As about the 10% of the male people in this world i am colorblind, that means that technically i have trouble with red and green colors. In reality, that color confusion applies to almost every color. What does this relate to a developer community? you will see...

Almost every day when dressing up during high school my outfit colors didn't match according to the fashion police (Ak. my mom) so i had to go back and change clothes. As being a student and with all the boom of mobile apps ('08 - '09) i hoped that the saying "there is an app for that" applied to my situation. Spoiler alert: it did not. Taking the matter on my own hands, made a mockup of my ideal app and stored on a folder in my room for long time because at that time, i had never touched a single line of code.

Then... fate kicked in!

After 3 years my young-me was at university studying to become a Software Developer (here in Chile, you start studying Civil Engineering and after 2 years you start on a specialty). I thought that i could now create my long-dreamed iOS app to avoid changing clothes twice every day for life. Took my computer and just after creating the new X-Code project BAM! protocols, API, http requests, async threads, scalable design, core data, databases, and a loooong list of things that i never heard of. I've got so frustrated because i thought that i would never be able to learn that much. So Mr. Dalton went again back to the same folder it was stored since '08.

Courses passed by, knowledge came to me and a Facebook Hackathon was the trigger for the final result. Facebook as you know, made a hackathon on april in Chile. With a team of four we made an iOS app with an API backend and a WebApp to shop with a tinder-like card system. We did not win (sadly) but in 48 hours i learnt more of iOS components than in 2 years.

The final countdown

That same semester i was taking an Artificial Vision course. Talking with my teacher Mr. Dalton came to my mind and asked him if the course would give me the knowledge to identify correctly colors of clothes. He said yes and i felt a little closer to my own app. A week later, my teacher said in class that we had to choose a project for the rest of the course. As i was looking though the options Mr. Dalton figured on it with my name assigned at one side. I've was (thankfully) forced to develop Mr. Dalton if i wanted to pass my AV course.

Long story short, Mr. Dalton was developed at July of 2017. Fully capable of matching clothes and ready for publishing. As a normal student, USD99 is not a small amount of money to pay, specially for a developer account. After 3 months of neglecting my duty to share Mr. Dalton with that 10% of colorblind people in this world, i was finally publishing it and for my surprise was accepted at the first try this Friday!

Looking back

As a Software Developer Student i have learnt some valuable lessons with Mr. Dalton that i would like to share with you.

  • A new project in a new platform will look hard or impossible to accomplish if it's your first time doing it.
  • Motivation is key. At the Facebook Hackathon i was so motivated to deliver a good project that those limitations like "is impossible" went away and delivered an "impossible" app.
  • Even if Mr. Dalton is not perfect, it's the result of your passions, that's the idea of a side project. You can always use time to fix or upgrade something of it.

If someone is interested in Mr. Dalton i will be happy to have a conversation.

Finally i would like to ask you, do you have an "impossible" project that you are proud of sharing?

Top comments (3)

tiso profile image

I have few little tools, that i finished to some state and then lot of middle-size projects, that i started, but never finished. That is good when i learn something that way, but bad when there are project for my needs.

clsource profile image

Congrats on publishing your first App!.
Wena loco :D

gonzalezanguita profile image
Jose Tomas Gonzalez


Weena! (jeje