First Day at the Start-Up (and what you might experience beginning a commercial mobile app)

There it was, the first (funded) day at our start-up. I spent the first day planning and mitigating risks with the chosen technologies and target platforms. In summary:

  1. Wore the project manager hat for the first couple of hours, organizing the Kanban cards in, adding information to them, doing necessary research, estimating effort using Fibonacci series numbers
  2. Found that I would need a Mac computer to develop for iOS without any legal issues. So I bought a Mac Mini, chosen based on cost-work balance: I will not be doing my main development on it; only building, testing, and writing the small bit of platform-specific code. I decided on one with an i5 1.4GHz (2.7 max turbo), 4GB RAM, 500GB HD, for $450. I paid the extra $6 to make it arrive tomorrow.
  3. In order to developer for iOS, and test on iOS and OS X, I started registering our corporation with an Apple Developer account, which I found out requires a D-U-N-S number. So after learning what that was, I experienced the long and difficult submission process.
    • At the end, they want to charge you $50 to get it in an only halfway-reasonable 5 business days; don't pay and you get to wait 30 business days, which is about 6 weeks!
    • Being stubborn, and in a hurry to test the technology combination on iOS, instead of paying $50 to wait 5 days to start the (what one source said was a) 5-day commercial Apple Developer application process, for a wait total of 2 weeks, I decided it would be better to go with the free path for the D-U-N-S number and pay for a personal Apple Developer account for $99 to be able to start testing on iOS right away (as soon as the Mac arrives tomorrow, that is), since after all we don't need the commercial account until we're actually publishing to the app store. That's $50 more, but $50 less to an annoying pricing model and archaic website. ...And $50 isn't much of a concern for a start-up trying to sprint to the market; it just got us closer faster.
    • The lesson from that, and what I should have remembered from past experience: Consider which tasks depend on response from third parties, and start those early. Ideally I would have started the process a few weeks ago. Nevertheless it worked out in this case.
  4. Created a test JavaFX application project with builds for all 4 main target platforms -- Windows, OS X, Android, iOS
    • Successfully built and ran on Windows and on an Android device
  5. Started to add Scala to the project to setup and test the complete Scala+JavaFX technology combination, but got a little sidetracked on researching which hardware we would want to support for interfacing mobile devices with MIDI pianos (and thus which I needed to buy and wait for)

...and that concluded the first day.