6: Flash of Genius: SAT Vocab in Objective-C

Paint QR Code 2d barcode in Objective-C 6: Flash of Genius: SAT Vocab

CHAPTER 6: Flash of Genius: SAT Vocab
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Even if I could accept a uniform font style, the problem of varying sentence length would still have been an issue. Leaving room for three lines of text looks silly when only one is being used (see Figure 7-8). In theory, I could have varied the height of a UITextView according to the length of the text to go inside, and varied the placement based on the heights of the other UITextViews above it, but why bother if the font style was still going to be a problem
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Figure 7-8. This is how Flash of Genius may have looked had I gone with UITextViews instead of UIWebView and just generally not cared about user interface design at all.
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In the end, I decided to go with UIWebView for the markup of all the text. Besides giving me the ability to carefully manage the style and placement of the text on the flashcard, this approach had another benefit. By relegating the markup to a UIWebView instance, I would have the option of working with web design and HTML people to design and implement the flashcards. As it turned out, that s exactly what happened.
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Designing the Buttons
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In theory, I could have just used UIWebView and forgone the UIButton class altogether. If you hack hard enough, you can actually get the click of a hyperlink in a UIWebView to prompt a method call in the UIViewController class. Using such a technique, I could have had my buttons displayed as images embedded in the web view. But that comes with a downside too: lack of visual feedback.
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CHAPTER 6: Flash of Genius: SAT Vocab
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Apple takes visual feedback very seriously when making their own software, and it shows in all the built-in applications for the iPhone. Consider the way the keys on the number pad turn bright blue as soon as they re touched (not to mention the tone they produce if the sound is on). Or consider the way any application icon darkens slightly when you tap it. These features all let the user know that the phone has registered the intended touch. One of the great things about the UIButton class is the ability to supply different images for different states of the button. For example, if a button has a checkmark as its image for UIControlStateNormal, then image for UIControlStateHighlighted for that same button could be a slightly darker checkmark, or a checkmark with some shading around it, or whatever else I wanted. There would have been no comparable freedom had I used images within the UIWebView instead of instances of UIButton. I went with shading around the checkmark, instead of just a darker checkmark, because thumbs are big. That is, the buttons were placed to coax the user to hold the device with two hands and use thumbs for pressing buttons. But when a thumb touches the checkmark button, it typically completely obscures the checkmark image. With shading for the highlighted state, a user can get the visual feedback that the button is being pressed from the area right around the thumb. I experimented with just making the checkmark bigger than the average thumb, and then using a darker checkmark for the highlighted state, but that just looked goofy, so I went with shading instead.
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Figure 7-9. These are the images for the default and highligted control states of the check button, respectively.
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As for the design of the actual checkmark and X, here are Jan s thoughts in her own words: I was going for buttons that were clean but still friendly and with a human, almost hand-written touch to them. The final product was sort of Web2.0y, which I think still resonates with the intended audience of high school kids, at least for now. A couple of issues remained regarding the little omnipresent Info button on the top-right of the screen. First of all, I knew I wanted it to be a lowercase i because iPhone users already know that touching a lowercase i generally takes them to a settings page. But I also wanted it to look like it was part of the sleek flashcard design. The white glow that often accompanies the Info button when it is pressed (in the built-in Weather and Stocks applications, for example) is also really cool but only comes in white, which, of course, is no good on the white background of Flash of Genius. So I asked Jan to make an i specifically for Flash of Genius and to make another one with a dark glow of some sort for UIControlStateHighlighted. I liked how they came out, so I went with this instead of the dark version of the Info button that comes in the API.
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Figure 7-10. These are the images for the default and highlighted control states of the Info button, respectively.
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