Here's a little known fact: There are actually 77 days in June. Seriously, who are you going to believe, me or some nursery rhyme? Is "hath" even a real word? Earlier in the year, I said that the source code for the field guide project would be released by the end of June. Well, today the source code for the field guide project is available to download. Welcome to the 77th of June.
The project is being hosted on Google Code, and has been released under an MIT license. This is a pretty broad license, allowing you to use the code as is, or mix and mash it to your hearts content. You can sell your app, or give it away for free.
We’d just ask you to do a couple of things. First up, if you build an app using the source code let us know! If it’s published in the app store, send us a link. If it’s only an internal app, send us a description of how you’re using it and some screen shots. Releasing the source code is an experiment, and we want to build up a picture of how the source code is being used.
Secondly, we’d appreciate it if you mention that your app is built on the field guide project source in your app’s about page. Include a link to either the field guide home page at MV, or to the field guide project home page on Google Code and you’ll have our thanks. We’ve helpfully included an example in the default about page for the project.
Thirdly, let us know if there are bugs or if there’s better ways to do things in the code. This is my first Objective-C app, and no doubt there’s plenty of room for improvement in the construction of the code. Releasing the code like this feels a little like performing on the trapeze without a net, scary and exciting. Everyone who's watching can see if you make a mistake. On the other hand, the more people that are watching, the more likely it is that someone will catch you if you fall.
So what happens next? Well, you may notice that we’ve called this version 0.9. That’s just to give us room to tweak the code and fix any issues based on your feedback. We won’t be adding any new features before we call it 1.0 though.
We’ve still got a couple of blog posts to come on how to customise design elements within the app, and no doubt there will be a couple of posts based on questions and feedback about the code. There’s also a post coming up for those of you who’d like to produce a field guide that’s not about animals.
So grab the code, make cool stuff and enjoy this last day of June. :-)