PocketSwatch Returns!

Few updates on the PocketSwatch app front:

  • For the past year or so my PocketSwatch app had been removed from the App Store because it had become outdated and incompatible with the latest version of iOS (the iPhone software).
  • Over the past couple weekends I finally finished getting an updated version of the app up and running and uploaded to the Apple App Store.
  • I’m probably not going to bother updating the Android build because I don’t have that kind of time and from what I can tell no one even found the app on the Google Play app store anyway.
  • I didn’t make any huge changes for this release but I did clean up the UI and addressed a few bugs.
  • I believe the layout may get a tad wonky for huge “phablet” phones but the app should work and run fine on most iPhone devices.



This was made for the previous version of PocketSwatch but basically covers all the basics.

ResumeTube Returns!

So following-up on my previous post here (and on Facebook) about my app “ResumeTube” …

A few weeks ago, after quite a bit of back and forth, Apple finally reconsidered their position on my app and officially approved it to return to the App Store! I’m not sure if I just annoyed them to death or if they truly saw the error of their initial review but either way … the app is finally free to stay on the App Store and get updates in the future.

Anyhow with the red tape out of the way I spent my free time the past couple weeks making a few changes to the app – the most notable things being:

  • iPhone Support (Finally!)
  • New fancy icon
  • Vimeo Support removed (never used it)

I hope to add cross-device sync in future but will see how bad I want/need that before attempting it (TBD).

As always, I’m very aware I may be the only guy who wants/uses an app like this but if anyone else tries it out let me know what you think.


Trump iPhone Wallpapers

Here’s yet another Trump artwork post. Really it’s just something that accumulated over time from my own desire to get some cool Trump backgrounds on my iPhone. Half of these are using altered or stylized Trump photos we’ve all seen floating around the web and the rest are existing artwork of mine. The photo of him sitting down and pointing I could only find in black and white so the color versions are my attempt at colorization (I think the colors look right?). Also these wallpapers are all best used on the iPhone “lockscreen” – not really for the “homescreen” (behind the icons). Maybe if I get time/ideas I’ll add some homescreen ones in the future.

By the way I just realized my iPhone below has the word “Carrier” in it … that is a super very weird/coincidence after today’s Trump’s statements at the “Carrier Air Conditioning” plant on keeping 1,100+ jobs in the US!!

Anyhow – enjoy and feel free to use if you like any of them.

Trump iPhone Wallpapers

Click/tap the thumbnails to preview a wallpaper and click/tap the phone itself to download the full-size version of the selected wallpaper.

I don’t know if there is some huge collection of Trump iPhone wallpapers on the internet already but if anyone has or finds some other cool ones please let me know and I’ll add it above (if it’s high quality enough of course!) – I’m sure there are some good ones out there somewhere!  

Feel free to leave a comment if you like or use any of these! Click here if you don’t know how to change your iPhone background.

PocketSwatch 2.0 Update

I’m excited to announce that the 2.0 update to my color swatch app “PocketSwatch” is finally finished and released!

What’s New?

  • Apple 64bit Requirement:  First of all – the main reason I decided to update the app in the first place was because PocketSwatch would have been taken off the App Store if I didn’t update it to meet Apple’s new 64-bit requirements before June or July this year … so I was forced to let that happen or at the very least republish it w/the updated 64-bit stuff.
  • Photo Mode!: While I was dusting things off I got the idea to re-research the notion of adding a “Photo” mode to the app that allowed users to pull colors from the camera or photos since I wasn’t able to do it for the initial release. After a helpful boost in the right direction from a helpful article written by my pal Raymond Camden* I was able to get this functionality built out and working. So … as seen in the banner graphic above there is now a full-fledged “Photo” mode to the app that let’s users select photos or take new photos w/the camera and create color swatch sets from them! So if you’ve ever wanted to know what the RGB color value of a yellow Skittle is … now you can find out!
    The functionality isn’t perfect yet by any means but it definitely does the job and I think it’s a fine starting point at a minimum.
    *Raymond has no idea who I am – I just pretend that he and I are pals
  • UI Update: Naturally I couldn’t resist cleaning up the look and feel of things to keep up with the times so the app icon and overall look of the app both got a mini face lift.
  • Other Misc Stuff: There are a handful of other updates (additional background textures, bit better Pantone® color handling and a few other things.

Google Play / Android!

One last thing … the other idea I had while working on updating the app was to attempt to take another stab at getting PocketSwatch compiled and working on Android devices. I tried this during the previous/initial version of the app but I had very little experience with Android dev at that point, plus the framework I use (PhoneGap) was a bit more rough around the edges then. Anyhow – thanks to having a bit of a better starting point on both of those fronts this time I was able to do it … so PocketSwatch is now available on the Google Play app store as well!
On a related note – since the Google device situation is so insane (i.e. way too many types of phones and even worse variety of operating system versions across devices) I wasn’t able to go overboard testing Android much. I think most modern phones will do fine w/it but older ones with older operating system versions may/may not perform great. If anyone actually downloads it on an Android device and reports trouble I will look into it of course … as time permits yadda yadda.

Until next time! …

PocketSwatch App Store Links:


Oh yeah – here’s the preview video of the new version in action!

PocketSwatch 2 from Chris Emerson on Vimeo.

Strong and SETS

1461529_523644671076609_2032885128_nI recently found a workout logging iPhone app named Strong from Endangered Apps and had to post about it (for my millions of readers of course). It doesn’t have any bloat – just the basic features you need – workout logging, custom exercise and routine management, history/stats and import/export abilities. On top of everything, the UI is very clean and easy to use. If I was being picky I’d say I wish the workout controls were more “fat finger friendly” (I have large hands!) but that’s a nitpick really.

Aside from it being a great app the reason I’m posting about it is because once I found the app I was able to abandon an app I had been (slowly) working on for the past year or so. The app I was building, tentatively named “SETS”, was going to basically do most of what the Strong app does – but it just doesn’t make sense for me to finish mine since Strong does everything so well.

Since I’m mothballing my app I figured I should post a couple images of it for historical/reference – so click the images below to see the “SETS” app icon and some screenshots of what it was going to look like.

Anyhow – thanks @strongapp! Love the app! Now to think of a new app I can start building … hmm.

MARWAV (alpha)

The multiple aspect ratio web app viewer (MARWAV).

Here’s a mobile/web app testing tool I threw together (out of necessity) over the past week to help with getting an app at work working in many different device screen sizes … without having to ALT-TAB a million times a day between different Chrome windows.  Please chime in if anyone has seen something else like this out there that is more formal/polished – I’d gladly abandon this and use something else if it exists.




App Update: PocketSwatch 1.4

Just a quick post to announce that an updated version of my PocketSwatch app is now available in the App Store. The main things in this update are:

  • New (lowered) price of $1.99.
  • Support for the larger iPhone 5 screen! (The app is lightning fast on the 5 and looks great!)
  • Some streamlining for iPhone 4 and older
  • Various bug fixes
  • New blue icon just for fun

Check it out here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pocketswatch/id509958461?ls=1&mt=8


New App: Kana Cards HD!

I’m excited to announce that my new app “Kana Cards HD” is finally finished and is now available on the App Store!

So what in the world does this app do? Well as some of you know I am a big fan of the Japanese language and culture – or at least the parts of it I’ve heard of or learned about over the years. I’ve made multiple attempts to learn to speak the language but I’ve sadly never gotten very far. Anyhow – a year or two ago I got the idea to make an app that would help me learn the japanese language – or at least their phonetic syllabaries (kana, or “alphabets”). I kicked around many different ideas for the app – ranging from ninjas, to bunnies to basic flash cards – but after a while I realized I wanted to make an app that was functional but also a tribute of sorts to the japanese language – something that would hopefully reflect my fondness for it.  Whether I achieved that last part or not is a subjective question – but I feel good about the final product as I think it does include something very functional, but also very polished and “shiny”.

Unlike my previous app, PocketSwatch, I decided a few months back to make Kana Cards HD a “universal” app – which means it is specifically designed to run on both the iPhone and the iPad. Achieving this added quite a bit of complexity/time to my already super-scarce development time (sometimes only couple hours a week) – but in the end I’m glad I did it as it gave me some good experience dealing with two completely different user interfaces that shared the (basic) same functionality/code base.

Some additional behind the scenes trivia:

  • All Hiragana and Katakana letters were hand-painted by me on the iPad
  • All the “male” pronunciation audio was recorded by yours truly – but I shifted the pitch up a bit because I couldn’t stand listening to myself over and over during development! 🙂
  • Paintings used for the card textures were pulled from the public domain
  • It took over 8 hours for the app to actually go live once it was approved by Apple … that wait was excruciating!!

As with many other apps out there, the concept and general goals of this app aren’t super unique. There are quite a few apps out there to help people learn the Japanese language. Some of them are really great (example) and quite robust – but far too many are pretty lame and a bit ugly.  I don’t claim that my app is THE best app out there for learning the Japanese language but I will, humbly, say that I believe Kana Cards HD’s core game mechanic and level of polish are one of a kind!

In the end my hopes for this app are that 1.) it helps some folks learn or enjoy some of the Japanese kana (alphabets) and 2.) I don’t offend any Japanese people by any mistakes or inconsistencies in the app!

See below for videos, links etc and let me know what you all think if you grab it.

Kana Cards HD: Screenshots




Kana Cards HD: Links

Kana Cards HD: Demonstration Videos:

Here are a couple demonstration videos of the app in action. As always, make sure to click the HD and fullscreen icon to view the videos properly!

iPad Version:

iPhone Version:

FYI to my friends and family

Please don’t buy the app unless you are truly wanting to learn the Japanese language! I have promo codes I can send you  to download it free if you want to check it out.


[slickr-flickr set=”72157630853262024″ type=”gallery” size=”large”]

Kana Cards HD: Teaser Icon!

Here’s a teaser graphic for my new upcoming mobile app: KanaCards HD. While I’m really excited about the app the project itself has dragged on for months and months at an excruciatingly slow pace of a couple hours a week at best (!!) … so needless to say I’m flat-out exhausted with it. My hope is that my throwing out this teaser icon will get me the spurt of energy I need to get to the finish line!

PS: A quick Google search of this app name will bring up a fair amount of apps by other people … I’ll explain my logic around non-unique name and rationale for the app in general in my next post.

iPhone 5: Painting 1

After seeing how fast the iPhone 5 is, I couldn’t resist doing a quick painting with Sketchbook mobile today while watching Tangled with Corgan. The iPad still wins out with biggest/best screen to paint on – but the speed and fluidity of painting on the iPhone 5 is definitely a more enjoyable experience.

As always please pardon my sad attempt at human and animal figure drawing!

PocketSwatch Full Version Now Available!

Just a quick FYI – I’m excited to announce that the full version of PocketSwatch is now available on the App Store (official link)!

As I mentioned in the previous post, the full version will cost a few bucks and is only intended for people who will actually use it in the real world – everyone else can try the free version to get the jist. That said, if any of my friends/family want to try the full version, please send me an email and I’ll send you a promo code to get it free.

It’s probably no shock to most of you that I’m already working an updated version with some neat new features so it looks like I won’t be getting a break from this app just yet. I hope to push the new version out ASAP – I’ll post details about that here when it’s ready.

PocketSwatch for iPhone!

I’m super excited to announce that my new iPhone app “PocketSwatch” has just been released to the app store!!

As I cryptically mentioned the other day, this project completely devoured every free minute I had for the past 4-5(?) week but it was a blast. It even had me getting up at 4:30 on weekend mornings (even on my sleep-in morning) to get it done faster! I was starting to think the app would never be finished because it seemed like for every 5 punchlist items I completed, 10 more would get added to the list! But eventually I came to a “finishing” point – well, really I just started moving all new ideas to a “Version 2.0/Maybe” project.

What is PocketSwatch?

In case the screenshot and app name don’t make it obvious, PocketSwatch is a color swatch creation and reference utility app – primarily geared towards computer-based artists, designers and developers – though non-computer folks might find it useful as well. In short PocketSwatch offers the user four things:

  1. Color Mixer/Swatch Set Creation
  2. Swatch Set Library/Reference
  3. RGB, HEX and CMYK color conversion
    (Note: The FULL version even has Pantone support!).
  4. Emails swatches and download “ASE” Adobe Swatch Exchange files as well!

The actual idea for the app came to me while I was working on another secret app (that has since been mothballed). The reason I dropped the app I had been working on previously to start this was because this idea, unlike 9 out of 10 of my typical app ideas, had an element of real world usefulness.

The other thing I found interesting about building this app was that it had some very logical ways to make a FREE version and a PAID version.

Unlike the Wooden Clock app, which was purely for entertainment and the fulfillment of a new year’s resolution, I see PocketSwatch as a serious tool, for some, so the “FULL” version actually deserves to carry a small price tag.

It’s a simple idea I know and while there are plenty of other “color” apps out there, I believe PocketSwatch is a cut above a fair amount of them both in simplicity/focus and the level of polish. But … I’m obviously wearing “parental” googles here so you all judge for yourselves!

One more thing – the app actually got released to the App Store earlier than I wanted – the current (pending release) versions of both the FREE and FULL app  are a bit nicer (plus I think there is a bug or two in the current FREE version). But – the base functionality is in the public/available one so folks can get the jist at least.

Demo Video

Here’s the official demo video showing the app in action for anyone out there w/out an iPhone. Make *SURE*  the HD button is “ON” before you start so you can see it in it’s full high-res glory! 🙂

App Store Stuff:

As mentioned above, there will be two versions of this app – a free/limited version and the paid/full version. The full version is still waiting to go through App Store review so that’s not available yet – but the free version is now available so folks can try it out and see what they think. By the way, if I was in this to make every possible penny I could I suppose I’d wait until the “pay” version was released before announcing the app. But while I will find it cool if some folks do find it useful enough to pay for, I did this for myself, for fun and to learn – everything else is icing.
Here’s the app store link to the FREE version.

Here’s the app store link (Posted on 2012/04/01):


Here’s the “official” facebook page that will serve as the support “portal” for the app:

Ok that’s all…

PS: Special thanks to Holly here for having extra patience when I was/am in full “obsession” mode on things like this.  Without her patience (and some good ideas) I wouldn’t get to make stuff like this. <3


Epic Portrait Fail! (365 2011.03.20)

Why the @#$! did I decide to try portraits!” was last week’s theme.

Man I was regretting going down this path on day 2!… but I figured I may as well try to stay outside my comfort zone sometimes – so I stuck with it. Though I’m not sure hiding eyes behind glasses counts as actually trying very hard. Plus I obviously blurred the lines on a few days since I don’t think Mario and Batman count as actual portraits… but whatever! In any case – I hope Marc and Holly aren’t too incredibly offended by my butchery! Just remember I stuck to 30 minutes or less on all of these (including my own which I am horrified by!).

I do want to spend a week practicing eyes, noses, etc since CLEARLY that is one of my weak (epic failure) areas! Here’s hoping next week is easier and more inside my comfort zone!

ZOMG ROBOTS! (365 2011.03.13)

Last week’s theme: “ZOMG ROBOTS!“.

I definitely had fun doing these guys – plus I don’t think I broke an hour on any of these – so that’s progress on the duration front too. Naturally I wish I could have spent much more time on each one – they all deserved better backgrounds and light bulbs but alas… the clock ticketh. BTW – I know none of these are in the same arena as Pixar’s WALL•E – but if anyone at Pixar wants to chat let me know 🙂 (hey – a guy can dream right?).

Scenes of Boats (365 2011.03.06)

“Scenes of Boats” I guess would be this past week’s theme – the topic idea contributed, once again, by Donnie :). For the record some of these were actually done in ~20 minutes because my week was so hectic/busy! Also – one other note, I semi-cheated on the one from 03/03. I took ~6 colors from an actual sunrise photo I’d taken earlier in the week to avoid having to fish out the colors myself from scratch… I’m a lazy loser – I know!