Custom Windows Applications

What is a custom application you ask? A custom application is one that is made to solve a particular problem.

Here is one example of a task that can be solved with a custom application.

You purchased your first computer several years ago. Wow, was it fast and you could do so many things with it. You could write letters keep track of your finances, figure out your taxes... Okay, I know, that is what you said when you convinced yourself to buy it but you really wanted it to play the latest games, chat with your friends, save all of those pictures from you new digital camera. Over the next few years you did just that, you saved everything, pictures, emails, articles, recipes, animated pictures of a cat doing something very, cat like. You may have even saved copies of your taxes. Eventually your computer grew old and slow. It took minutes to do anything, and there was not any room left to store those receipts and other important documents. We won't even mention how many of the new games you could not play on it. What were you to do? Well that was easy, buy a new one. The new one was three times as fast as the old one and had tons of storage, not to mention a great video card so you could play some really cool games.

Here is where you start to develop a problem that only gets worse every few years when you repeat this cycle. What did you do with all of those files from the first one? Of course, you spent weeks and weeks sorting through them, put them in very organized folders within folders, and deleted the ones you would never need again, right? No, of course not, who wants to spend all that time working with the old clunker when you could be enjoying the super fast new one? If you are like many of us, you just copied them all to a folder on your new computer and every now and again you move a few files that you need to a new folder. Now you have a computer which is 50 or 100 times as fast and has hundreds, if not thousands of files scattered in a variety of folders. Your favorite cousin calls and asks for a copy of that fantastic cookie recipe that your great grandmother gave you and you say, sure, no problem, I should have it in my computer. After 3 hours of searching you finally find it. What could you have been thinking when you filed it in a folder called Archives2a and called it Great Glob?

You have now decided to bite the bullet and spend some time organizing all of these things. Yes, the salesman from many years ago did stretch the truth when he told you that the computer would organize everything for you. True, you can locate a file in seconds if you can remember the name, or part of the name, or even a few words if the file contains text. In your case, you had no clue about the name, and the file was a scanned image pasted as a picture inside a word document. Let’s get started, first you set up some nice neat folder names with a few well thought out subfolders. Then you open the old folders and start to drag and drop them into their new homes. Wait, why do you have 15 pictures with the helpful name of photo1? Oh, that’s right, your old camera used names like that so you just need to open them and give them good names. After the fourth one you notice that they are all the same picture, taken on the same day, at the same time. Great, you can just throw the extra ones away! Not so fast, what if some of them have the same name but have different dates, are they really the same picture?

Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a program to help? Imagine, you click a few buttons and all of your files appear in a nice list with the true duplicates clearly marked so you can decide to keep them or toss them. How about if the program also sorted the documents by type and date and gave you the option to add your own categories to them. Perhaps you would like a place to add a few notes to keep track of who you sent copies to? Remember when you started looking for a new job and you sent out multiple versions of your resume customized for each position? Which version did you send to which employer? Or, how about the dating service, which picture did you use?

This may sound a little exaggerated, but it is written from a conversation at a developers group where someone said that she now had six terabytes of old files on her computer and was adding a new drive because she was afraid to throw away something she might need and it would take forever to sort through it all.

Do you have a problem that you think might be solved by a custom application?

Send me an email and we can talk about it.