Intel’s Ultimate Coder Challenge is a unique competition where 6 developers go head to head to develop the ultimate Ultrabook app. The challenge will continue to take place over the next 5 weeks, as six developers work to develop apps that take full advantage of the performance advances, graphic prowess, and touch and sensor technologies that are available in the latest generation of Ultrabooks. The developer with the best app will win a cash prize, and the title of “Intel Ultimate Coder.” I am participating as a judge in the competition, and over the next couple of weeks, I will be following the progress of these developers as they work to complete the ultimate Ultrabook app. Last week I focused on introducing the developers and their app concepts. Now it’s time to check in on their progress.
It’s amazing that even though it’s just week 2 of the competition, the developers are already rethinking their app concepts and especially their strategy for utilizing the Ultrabook’s unique features. For example, Lee has said that he has decided to forgo a pick-up and shake function for the app. Speaking of Lee, he has finally revealed his app concept. The Love Hearts will let you create media messages on your Ultrabook and send them to your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Email and App-To-App. The app will also take advantage of an Ultrabook’s Always On Notifications while running low-power mode, so that you can receive a message even if the Ultrabook is closed. He is also working to make the app run independently of a keyboard, and totally touchscreen based.
I have been wondering if most of the developers have an advantage since they are “simply” porting over a pre-existing app concept to the Ultrabook. However this week George & Suresh are talking about how they are busy building MoneyBag 2.0 in a fluid layout that will fit all screen sizes. They’re also throwing in 40 new and enhanced features. Interestingly enough, they are estimating that the design and development time for MoneyBag 2.0 will be 6 times more than the time taken for MoneyBag 1.0 to be developed from scratch, so perhaps they don’t have such an advantage after all.
There is no question about it, the Metro user interface of Windows 8 makes apps look more sophisticated and clean looking, but it also seems to take longer to design. Fortunately, Andreas has made some nice progress designing his vocabulary trainer with the Metro U.I.. Shailesh has also been talking about how he is designing the BioIQ app in a Metro version, complete with an App bar, drag and drop actions and full touchscreen support. On the other hand, Sagar has been running into some hiccups designing with the Metro U.I.’s Live Tiles and push notification system with his Shufflr app.
Finally, John has a first build available for their Wind Up Football app, and it takes advantage of the Ultrabooks’ touchscreen. He even has a video up that shows it off.
Check in next week as I continue to follow the developers and their progress. And at the rate that they are all coding, each week is likely to bring a lot of new developments.