Breadcrumbs, Of Design
Breadcrumbs is an app I originally created for a 20 hour Hackathon put on at Michigan Tech (TechHacks). It came in second overall among the plethora of hardware and software projects put together in the time limit. That was a feat I was quite happy with, but I can do better. As such, I’ve been sitting down for the past two months revising and reworking much of the app attempting to identify what would make it shine and how best to implement those features. Below is my goal statement for Breadcrumbs which will hopefully outline what I want the app to be able to accomplish and also hopefully demonstrate some of its intended uses. Breadcrumbs will be coming to your Windows Phone’s running Windows Phone 8 or higher this summer. A more specific date will be specified later and has perhaps been hinted at on another website.
Context is key. Everything we do, everyone we meet, every event that occurs they all happen in a place and every place has a specific meaning to it. Whether you need to remember a location for your job or you just want to remember that epic vacation where you were is an important part of that. As such Breadcrumbs main goal is to provide a place for you to visually see people, pictures and events in relation to their location. Since none of these events occur in a vacuum it must also be necessary for people to share these locations with their friends and coworkers. As such Breadcrumbs serves as the loaf of bread with which to lead people back to important places so they never get lost.
Breadcrumbs was originally designed as a business to business app. That is, it was initially purpose built for a business to use the location based services it provides to improve their own business. That has expanded now with the target audience being twofold including both enterprise and casual users.
In order to satisfy business requirements, Breadcrumbs does not collect any personal or data related information from the app. It does not require an internet connection to use and will never send your data back to any server unless you explicitly share that data with your coworkers. This was designed specifically to allow businesses to be able to use Breadcrumbs without having to be concerned about privacy or potential leaks of information from external sources. Furthermore, Breadcrumbs is designed to allow users to export and backup their data or even export, edit and re-import their data. This feature was designed to prevent the loss of data that might have resulted from damaged or lost devices. It also adds a level of security allowing you to ensure that a dropped device does not wipe months of records from memory permanently. To compound these business features Breadcrumbs also integrates tightly with office using spreadsheets as the format of exported data making opening the data on your phone in Excel or on your PC with any number of Office softwares exceptionally easy.
In order to expand and add additional depth to Breadcrumbs I’ve chosen to also target casual users as well. This includes a number of additional features that, while they have business applications, are focused more on casual users. These features include the abilities to associate images and people with events as well as the addition of sharing to Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites beyond Email and SMS (text messaging). These features are designed to make it much easier for users to plot out their vacations, share some cool information with friends and more.
That’s about it for the goals for Version 1 of Breadcrumbs but there are a number of other features planned for future releases that might find their way into the initial release if they’re lucky. If their is some specific feature you think I should include in Breadcrumbs make sure you let me know in the comments below (I do read them, I promise).