Tag Archives: chemistry

Inorganic Acids v. 1.1 – an Update with Localizations

Today the Apple review team decided to eliminate the backlog of apps awaiting for the review and they approved my 3 apps and this update of Inorganic Acids and Polyatomic Ions. I submitted it just 14 hours before its status became “In Review”.

There are two major things:

1) Localization into Italian, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Swedish languages. It’s probably the hardest of my apps to localize because the database is vast, strings are messy, and many compounds are quite obscure, so it’s impossible to find everything quickly in Wikipedia. But I designed the first version keeping only English and Russian in mind, and I don’t want to remove any compounds now.

As for the Italian translation, I am obliged to Sandro Soldano who did a great job on translating a lot of compounds’ names and fixing my lame Italian translations that I had done before. Thanks!

2) In v. 1.0, only the simplest acids and ions (“Acids 101”) were available without buying the in-app-purchase. This is less than one third of all compounds and since the purchasing activity was quite low, I decided to make the next level (“Acids 201” – 30 more acids and 30 more ions/salts) free. However, it is required to give 100 correct answers in the first level to get a free access to this second level. The IAP opens both the 2nd and 3rd levels immediately as it did before.

When I downloaded the app today, I noticed that I forgot to add one picture (more precisely, I added it but it has a wrong name: a little hyphen is missing). So it’s likely that I will soon submit Inorganic Acids v. 1.2 with “minor bugs fixed” in the What’s New section.

About three other apps that have been approved today, I’ll write in my blog later.

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Chemical Elements of the Periodic Table – Name Quiz and Flashcards

The most popular chemistry-related topics are Chemical Elements and Periodic Table. There are more than 150 app about the latter on the App Store. I’m adding one more. But it’s not just a periodic table or a multiple choice quiz. It’s a cooler “spell the name of the element” quiz + flashcards + Mendeleev. Let’s see how competitive my app will be.

The English description of the game is the following:

You’ll learn the names of all 118 chemical elements with this app. Please choose the way of studying that suits you the best:

* Basic Elements Quiz
* Flashcards
* Periodic Table
* Advanced Elements Quiz

Please check the short bio of Dmitri Mendeleev, the discoverer of the Periodic Law.


*****

– The game is available in 8 languages. It’s very easy to find translation of elements’ names.
– The buttons in the main menu look like “element cards”. For the first time, I added a link to my another app (Hydrocarbons) in the main menu.
– Periodic Table is very neat. One can find all 118 elements, their atomic numbers and masses.

Acknowledgements:
icons for buttons were downloaded from iconmonstr or were created with Font Awesome.

For the app icon a fragment of Ilya Repin’s Portrait of Dmitry Ivanovich Mendeleev wearing the Edinburgh University professor robe (1885; The State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow) is used.

Thanks!

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Inorganic Acids, Polyatomic Ions and Potassium Nitrate

My new app is called Inorganic Acids, Polyatomic Ions and Potassium Nitrate. Hopefully, it will be useful for everyone who studies inorganic chemistry.

The English description:

Learn names and formulas of all important inorganic acids, polyatomic ions and their salts. An app is suitable for everyone: from high school students to chemistry professors.
Take a quiz or use the table as a reference.

* 70+ inorganic acids: from Sulfuric H2SO4 to Hydrazoic HN3
* 50+ anions and cations: from Chloride Cl to Hydrazinium N2H5+
* 50+ salts: from Potassium nitrate KNO3 to Ammonium hexachloroplatinate (NH4)2PtCl6

*****

New features:
– Table prepared with iOS standard elements
– Rate App button
– New smaller Open / Remove Letters buttons
– The app icon resembles a safety diamond (shows how dangerous a particular chemical compound is)
– Entering chemical formulas as answers. I even didn’t use subscripts, because in the Georgia fonts, digits are already smaller than letters.
– “Acidic” colors are used in design
– Only first 2 modes and a table are available for free. Six others modes can be purchased just for $0.99 together with removing the ads banner.

3. Acknowledgements:
icons for buttons were downloaded from iconmonstr or were created with Font Awesome.

Thanks!

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Heterocyclic Compounds

My third chemical app – Heterocyclic Compounds.

The English description:

Heterocycles are parts of:
* Biomolecules (nucleic bases in your DNA and RNA; amino acids Histidine and Tryptophan)
* Important drugs (80% of top-selling drugs contain heterocycles: benzodiazepines, quinine, penicillin, etc.)
* and even Food (sugar has heterocyclic rings too!)

That’s why it’s so useful to know the structures of major heterocyclic compounds for molecular biologists, pharmacists, organic chemists and for general public interested in what the stuff is made from.

This app is the unique place to learn the structures and names of 80+ heterocycles.

* Entertaining letter quiz ‘Structure – Name’
* Nitrogen, oxygen, and sulfur heterocycles
* Everything from Purine to Pyridine

*****

1. This app has a bit aggressive “watermelon” design and its goal is not only to teach millions of iOS users about heterocyclic structures but also test the simplest possible “letter quiz” model. There is one linear mode. No flashcards, no tables. The IAP just removes the ad banner.

The review time now is slightly longer than 1 week.

2. Features:
– One linear mode of 81 heterocycles with random questions after finishing the whole sequence
– English and Russian localizations
– Games – Educational / Word category

3. Acknowledgements:
icons for buttons were downloaded from iconmonstr or were created with Font Awesome.

Thanks!

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Amino Acids Structures and Names

My second chemical app Amino Acids Structures and Names was approved less than in one week after the first one about Hydrocarbons. This time there have been no problems during the submission / review process at all.

The English description of the app:

Do you know the chemical formula of glycine?
Btw, the knowledge of structures and names of amino acids – building blocks of proteins and peptides – are important not only for chemists, but also for biologists, pharmacists, and just for everyone studying science and/or medicine. This app is the easiest and the most efficient way to learn the structures, codes, and properties of 20 standard amino acids and 14 related compounds.

*****

* ‘Structure – Name’ Quiz
* Flashcards – Rate each card to adjust to your level of knowledge
* All 22 proteinogenic Amino Acids (20 standard + Selenocysteine and Pyrrolysine)
* Colorful structural formulas
* Three- and One-letter codes (abbreviations)
* Isoelectric points (pI)
* Essential Amino Acids
* Polar and Hydrophobic Amino Acids
* Unnatural Amino Acids such as D-Alanine
* Dipeptides such as Aspartame*

*****

It is a perfect app for everyone studying:

* Biochemistry
* Organic Chemistry
* Molecular Biology


*****

New features:
– It can be also called my first biochemical app.
– Flashcards mode – the player sees a formula or a name of an amino acid, tries to remember what’s the missing info is, checks “Show an Answer” and finally rates how well he/she knows this particular amino acid (from 1 – not at all – to 5 – very well). The probability of this card to be shown again depends on this rating.
– The IAP is associated with flashcards. There are 34 compounds in the app and only 10 cards are available for free. To get them all, one has to buy “All flashcards & Remove Ads”.
– “Promo buttons”:
a) instead of the “More Games” list in Settings, I have a direct link to Hydrocarbons and other apps from the game. The button shows up after answers to certain questions.
b) The button “Watch Ads” was moved from Settings to the game as well. It shows an AdMob interstitial, gives hints for this, and disappears.
– So far it was localized only to English and Russian but I do have plans to add at least German, Spanish, and Italian in future updates.
– I may called it “a game” but it’s my first app in the Education category.

3. Acknowledgements:
icons for buttons were downloaded from iconmonstr or were created with Font Awesome.

Thanks!

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Hydrocarbon Chemical Formula

Word World

My first chemistry app Hydrocarbon Formula has been approved and is on the App Store. I plan this to be a start of a series of apps based on the model “Letter Quiz” where the player sees a picture or a formula and has to build its name from the given letters. There will be both chemical and non-chemical quizzes.

The English description of the game is the following:

This application is essential for students learning the basics of organic chemistry, for teachers, graduate students and professionals checking their knowledge of the subject. There are more than 175 structural formulas: fun to guess – easy to remember. Hydrocarbons are the most fundamental class of organic compounds, so it is very important to know their chemical names.

Questions are logically divided into 6 topics covering all possible hydrocarbons. Begin with crucial structures such as methane CH4, benzene C6H6, and octane C8H18 and then proceed to advance topics learning about benzopyrene C20H12 and cubane C8H8. In each question, guess the name of the hydrocarbon or use the hints.

The compound database is prepared by a PhD chemist. 178 structures and names of:

* Alkanes
* Cycloalkanes
* Alkenes / Alkynes
* Dienes, and Polyenes
* Aromatic Hydrocarbons (Arenes)
* Polyaromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs)

***

1. This app was twice rejected because of too-long name (the reviewer asked to move all those “dienes, polyenes” to keywords) and because of failed (?) in-app-purchase. According to the attached screenshot, the IAP did work. So I wrote a letter to the Resolution Center and the app was quickly approved without any additional comments on their side or actions on my side.

2. New features are:
– “Watch Ads” button showing an AdMob interstitial and giving the player 20 hints
– Send an email to the author (asmolgam@gmail.com) button in the app
– 40 hints are given for sharing the info about the app on Twitter or Facebook
– Localization to 5 languages besides English and Russian: German, French, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese.

3. Acknowledgements: icons for buttons were downloaded from iconmonstr or were created with Font Awesome.

Thanks!

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ChemTemplate – fruHarvest is almost ready

I don’t write to the blog, because I work on new apps and old apps are doing just fine without my reminds about their existence. After all, their download number is at least 2 orders of magnitude higher than the number of visits of this website. So what are major news?

fruHarvest is almost ready and I’ll be surprised if it’s not submitted for the revision this week (though I still have to update my OS X and Xcode). Today I plan to test it on an iPad and complete all levels. I’m in the 28th (of totally 46) now.

– A lot of work has been done on creating a template for future apps. It’s called ChemTemplate for now, because chemistry-related applications is the major direction I’m going to take in the next couple of weeks. The template is the first necessary step to my idea of “a thousand apps”. It incorporates the code for ads, IAPs, game center, and many other useful features.

– I had some doubts about the potential of chemistry apps on the App Store. But now I have a lot of doubts about any of my app. Let’s see how fruHarvest will start. If it’s on the par with Greek Letters, then I’ll focus on small and simple apps rather than on big games. Keeping this in mind, I started to revise the outline of asmolgam.com. Some pages can be still under construction. For example, I combined my CV with the contact form and changed the “Forgotten Games” page to “Chemistry Apps” page.

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Useful Links Update

Today I updated my Useful Links post. Please check it now. There are 12 links now.

Today I’m working on sounds, music and fonts for fruHarvest. I’m also thinking about abandoning the idea of Forgotten Games page and change it to a page devoted to chemistry and chemical apps. I’ll wait until my first chemistry quiz is published and then I’ll make a decision.

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More Fruits – Amino Acid Structures – Sales Increase

I’m busy with both real-life tasks and with reading about creation of apps. Today I’ll be very brief.
– I got an inspiration to draw more fruits and vegetables. Essentially I want to draw every thing that comes to my mind. Though some objects (cabbage!) are difficult to draw realistically, while others are a pice of cake (bell pepper!).
– I drew the structure of 23 amino acids (20 classical + selenocysteine + pyrrolysine + β-alanine). I refused to use Elementals and switched to a different editor. But it’s merely a beginning. I need much more chemical graphics, not saying about the implementation of the functional app.
– Thus, I found that it’s too early to read books and Wiki for “amino acid tips” that I want to introduce after every correct answer. I can write dozens of them, but it’s hard to choose which level of the user I’m targeting. Should I teach them that proteins consist of amino acid residues? Or must it be a trivial stuff for those who want to learn AA structures with the help of my app?
What Color is This Monster? was a paid app for 5 days. There is a significant increase in downloads today when it’s free again. 18 first days of July will be definitely more profitable than 18 days the game was on the App Store in June.

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Color Fruits – Chemistry Apps – First iOS App

First, I wrote a post every day. Then every other day. This time I’ve skipped two days without posts. It’s sad. Perhaps, I’m very busy with doing apps? I wish it was true. Here is a brief list of my recent accomplishments.

1) I scanned and colored all fruits and vegetables that I drew for fruColor game. I’m not sure that realistically looking fruits are the best choice for simple games but I’m satisfied with the result. Some of my fruits look very much alike the real things.
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