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New android (possibly apple) app, help needed

18 posts in this topic

I am thinking/musing about getting an app written or whatever its called in the app world, but I am confused (no change there from normal :D )

 

I have seen some open source ones that do part of what I want, but not quite all of it, so I would like to have someone change the code slightly(?) to take out the parts that are not needed, and add a few bits that I want it to do. Now to me that sounds relatively simple, but my main questions are

1, how legal is it to do this?

2. can these be done for both android and apple phones, or are they totally different so need separate apps?

3, I have seen sites like freelancer and truelancer, how safe are they to use, as in would the person doing the work put a virus in it or something?

 

Its a sort of fall alert type thing that would phone 1 or more numbers if the phone goes from portrait to landscape if that helps

 

I am going to get a throwaway phone at the weekend and a sim to try out a version of the app I am looking at to see how it may work in reality, and I am not looking at it being a huge business or anything like that, but thought it would be good to ask here as there is guaranteed to be someone who will know something :) 

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I will look later, but have a feeling it will be beyond my capability to even start on that one!!

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Not really possible to answer your question from the information you give Susie. You can make derivative works from existing works if and only if the license conditions attached to those existing works allow it.

There are MANY MANY open source licenses, some of which allow derivative works, some don't.

If this app was just for your personal use then it might have been easier with the licensing, but if you are doing this as a business then you really must get the legal side of this sorted out.

If you have a program that does most of what you want and is open source, then you might just want to get in touch with whoever wrote it and ask them. They might well be able to make the mods for you for a suitable fee, AND give you an appropriate license. 

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11 hours ago, SusieT said:

...

1, how legal is it to do this?

2. can these be done for both android and apple phones, or are they totally different so need separate apps?

3, I have seen sites like freelancer and truelancer, how safe are they to use, as in would the person doing the work put a virus in it or something?

...

 

 

1)    If it is truly open source then you are free to download the code and do whatever you want legally, as long as you respect the original licence agreements (which is not probably an issue for what you want as they allow changes.).

 

2)   This depends on the technology used to develop the app.  Some techs are specific to a specific platform such as Android, some are cross platform so will work on multiple.

 

3)  They are trustworthy and I seriously doubt you would have this sort of problem.  These people make money from these sites and rely on their reputation to get more work, as the better the work the higher the reputation, and the higher the reputation the more likely they are to get more work.  If they done this then they would probably be banned from such sites and not be able to make money!

 

 

 

11 hours ago, SusieT said:

...

I have seen some open source ones that do part of what I want, but not quite all of it, so I would like to have someone change the code slightly(?) to take out the parts that are not needed, and add a few bits that I want it to do. Now to me that sounds relatively simple, but my main questions are

...

 

Let me put this into context for you

 

Customer:   I like the car, I just want a few changes.

Seller:   Of course, I'm sure I can help, want do you want?

 

Answer 1:

Customer:  Could you give me new wheels and seats covers?

 

Answer 2:

Customer:   Could you just take the engine out, remove some bits, add new bits?  It seems simple to me as it is just a small engine and the car is second hand.

 

 

So as you can see, it might be simple and cheap, or it might be very complex.

 

 

As there are a lot of tech people on here, why don't you be more specific.  Send a link to the App's open source code and give an indication of the changes you want to have.  Then you can get a more specific answer to how complex it might be.

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, pappnase said:

Not really possible to answer your question from the information you give Susie. You can make derivative works from existing works if and only if the license conditions attached to those existing works allow it.

There are MANY MANY open source licenses, some of which allow derivative works, some don't.

If this app was just for your personal use then it might have been easier with the licensing, but if you are doing this as a business then you really must get the legal side of this sorted out.

If you have a program that does most of what you want and is open source, then you might just want to get in touch with whoever wrote it and ask them. They might well be able to make the mods for you for a suitable fee, AND give you an appropriate license. 

Thank you, while I am not looking to make a business of it, I think there could be other people interested IF it works, IF it is possible to make it so that it cannot simply be transfered to other phones without buying it etc. I am just trying to think in advance about what may happen in the next few years and do not want to be caught out by something like that. 

3 hours ago, dj_jay_smith said:

 

 

1)    If it is truly open source then you are free to download the code and do whatever you want legally, as long as you respect the original licence agreements (which is not probably an issue for what you want as they allow changes.).

 

2)   This depends on the technology used to develop the app.  Some techs are specific to a specific platform such as Android, some are cross platform so will work on multiple.

 

3)  They are trustworthy and I seriously doubt you would have this sort of problem.  These people make money from these sites and rely on their reputation to get more work, as the better the work the higher the reputation, and the higher the reputation the more likely they are to get more work.  If they done this then they would probably be banned from such sites and not be able to make money!

 

 

 

 

Let me put this into context for you

 

Customer:   I like the car, I just want a few changes.

Seller:   Of course, I'm sure I can help, want do you want?

 

Answer 1:

Customer:  Could you give me new wheels and seats covers?

 

Answer 2:

Customer:   Could you just take the engine out, remove some bits, add new bits?  It seems simple to me as it is just a small engine and the car is second hand.

 

 

So as you can see, it might be simple and cheap, or it might be very complex.

 

 

As there are a lot of tech people on here, why don't you be more specific.  Send a link to the App's open source code and give an indication of the changes you want to have.  Then you can get a more specific answer to how complex it might be.

 

 

 

Thank you very much, that makes total sense. I know it sounds stupid, but I was probably going to contact an app developer who charges very little, as it seems they are very poor, (most are from India, and I know a lot of others are poor as well but some are obviously desperate for some work), so I could probably feed a family for a few days with it.

 

I am guessing I would want fiddly bits of  the engine out, and plain parts in to replace them, and a new exhaust fitting :D:D Probably best for me to zoom to town quickly for a sim card, then buy an old smartphone  and use an app that is like what I want and ask someone to do it from scratch, as I suspect things that send my head round in circles would be ABC to someone who knows what they are doing, at least I now know what an accererometer is! 

Link to the sort of source code I was looking at  https://github.com/mitchdoran92/falldetection What I am looking at is for the phone to ring (or send sms) when it is at 30 degrees tilt for more than x seconds, and at 85-90 degrees tilt for more than x seconds. Possibly to more than one phone if there is no answer. No option to stop it sending, and no noise or light from the sending phone. If it comes back to upright then it resets itself and automatically calls again if it gets to whatever angle is set.

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If I get it right: You want to place a mobile phone on the bathroom floor and the app is supposed to call some numbers when somebody has a fall in that bathroom?

 

Based on the analysis of the data of the accelerometer in the smartphone?

 

And it is supposed to work reliable in different types of buildings/Bathrooms?

 

Knowing a tiny smidge of the Technology behind knocking detection in modern combustion engines I must say that this is an impossible task: You have to carefully tune the algorithm to every new object to be monitored! In my case different types of engine blocks and in your case different bathrooms.

 

Do you know something about Digital Signal Processing? What's a low-pass, a Fourier analysis, a convolution based filter, a trimmed mean filter, how to handle floating numbers on a binary based system?

 

And you want to give this to people to rely on the App to correctly detect a fall of a loved one in the bathroom? 

 

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Not on the bathroom floor, and not for a fall of a loved one, no way would I do that to anyone!   I only mentioned the fall alert app as an example because it is closest to what I want, understandable, and it is the app I will buy to try out later to see how practical it would be.. 

I have no idea of any of those things, hence me thinking that doing it myself would be beyond me, and so asking about a freelancer to do it who needs work, and for advice on here first before I go merrily leaping into something that is not possible :)

 

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Noboy on this forum can tell you if it is possible or not when your so vague about it.

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41 minutes ago, franklan said:

Noboy on this forum can tell you if it is possible or not when your so vague about it.

Thanks, I think from the answers above I am best to try the fall app tonight to see if it would theoretically work, and then write exactly how I want it to work and adjust that over a week or so in case I have missed something obvious, then contact someone on the freelancer sites, and get it done for me to play with and if I need any tweaks they can add them later :) 

In my head it is "simple" as I wrote above, but as seems normal for me I was probably not clear enough

 

(imagine you are holding the phone facing you to take a portrait selfie)

Phone upright or tilted backwards or forwards nothing happens, then 1 of 2 options can be chosen

1, it tilts 30 degrees or more left or righ for more than x seconds - it rings the set phone number (possibly also sends a text), if no anser it rings phone number 2

or

2. If it tilts 85-90 degrees left or right for more than x seconds - it rings the set phone number (possibly also sends a text), if no anser it rings phone number 2

x being changeable

 

BUT the fall apps have a light or beep in case its a false alarm, so has button the person can push to say they are ok, I do not want this at all, no noise or lights from the sending phone. 

As I say, in my head it is simple, but obviously from your reply I am better to talk to someone who knows what they are doing.

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18 minutes ago, dj_jay_smith said:

 

 

Sorry, but I don't actually see any code in the repository!  Only a readme file.

 

Also, nothing has been done for 4 years, which is never a good sign for any project anyway!

Thank you, thats a very good point about the length of time it been since it was looked at.

 I think I will go down the route of having someone to do it from scratch, as that way it should be clean and exactly what I want rather than trying to adapt something written for a different purpose :) 

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All I can think about are the number of times a day that would go off. When I change something from portrait to landscape, when I go and lie on the sofa after getting in from work, maybe if it’s in my pocket and I take off my trousers etc

 

Maybe it’s just because I don’t know what the app is really about, but it seems you would get a lot of false alarms.

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21 hours ago, SusieT said:

I do not want this at all, no noise or lights from the sending phone. 

 

I can think of reasons someone might want features like this (an emergency alert in case someone is attacked maybe, or some kind of home security system that starts recording video when a device is moved), but I can also see no end of problems with it. 

 

Think of the privacy issues with a device calling a number without alerting the user possibly allowing someone to listen in without them realising. Imagine a paranoid husband instals this on his wifes phone and then listens in on her having an affair. Or an employer installs it on work phones issued to staff - would you be happy to find that each time you threw your bag in the corner it dialled your boss and he listend in?

Think also of a device that calls or sends a text to a premium rate number without telling the user - these things have existed in the past and Id expect "invisible calls" are probably against terms and conditions for this reason.

Also think of the false alerts, how many times will someone put their phone down at an angle and cause a false alert? There is a reason the existing apps tell you about them.

 

On 31/05/2019, 19:41:44, SusieT said:

I have seen sites like freelancer and truelancer, how safe are they to use, as in would the person doing the work put a virus in it or something?

 

People are people, some are good some are bad, most are a mix. Asking someone to write an app for me that will start calls and send texts without telling me sounds like something I would need a high level of trust for. 

 

How do you know that at the end of the month you wont have thousands of euros of calls placed to an international premium rate number, or even just to an indian number the guy used for testing and forgot to take out?

 

On 01/06/2019, 11:07:19, SusieT said:

I could probably feed a family for a few days with it.

 

Are you making a charitable donation, or asking for work?  You need to think clearly what you are doing, what you expect and why.  Helping someone who is starving is a great thing to do, but dont kid yourself.  Good developers are not starving, not even in india.

 

On 01/06/2019, 11:07:19, SusieT said:

I am not looking to make a business of it, I think there could be other people interested IF it works, IF it is possible to make it so that it cannot simply be transfered to other phones without buying it etc. I am just trying to think in advance about what may happen in the next few years and do not want to be caught out by something like that. 

 

Who will own the app, if the dev adds advertising to it, does he get the revenue or do you? Who is going to support it, make new versions, fix it when you find problems...?  

 

If its a toy for you, then spending a few hundred euros is harmless, if you are thinking of releasing it to others then you need to think it out in more detail.

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52 minutes ago, evildudette said:

All I can think about are the number of times a day that would go off. When I change something from portrait to landscape, when I go and lie on the sofa after getting in from work, maybe if it’s in my pocket and I take off my trousers etc

 

Maybe it’s just because I don’t know what the app is really about, but it seems you would get a lot of false alarms.

 

Yes, definitely.  A company where I was working wasn't supposed to have someone in the shop working alone but it still sometimes worked out that way so to cover their butts, they got a "dead man" cell phone.  It was supposed to text certain numbers if the guy stopped moving for while or some other conditions and its number could be called and listened in on without anyone answering.  So when the dept. manager complained that the guy was not supposed to work alone, the safety manager told him, look, we bought the "dead man" phone so make him use it, we've covered our butts and if something happens and he's not using it, it's his own fault.  So the dept. manager set up the phone to notify the general manager and safety manager, gave it to the guy on the late shift and went home.  Only a couple of hrs. later the safety manager called him at home and told him to go and turn that !"##$%&&/ phone off because it kept flooding him with texts and the general manager had contacted him and complained about it too and told him to get that effing thing shut off.  So it got shut off and never used again.

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Thanks all for your thoughts, as I said above, the fall alert is the closest to what I want, I did not want it for any person to carry, simply to know when something tipped to or beyond a certain point, so no data problems at all, and it is now only for my use - false alarms are absolutely no problem!! 

I was simply trying to get an idea of what would happen if at some point in the future it was something that would be marketable, I have spoken to a few people today, and have decided that for a couple of reasons it is not going to be something marketable, but I will go ahead with it for my own use :)

I had not even considered adding any advertising to it, and had doodled on my list of t hings to think about and discuss with the person writing it :)

 

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So if it's not going to become a product, can you tell us what it actually is going to be? I think we are all very curious to know :).

 

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It is very simply so I can gaffer tape a phone in position to make sure something does not lean over too far for a few weeks, and if it does I get a call so I can check it is not going to be in a dangerous position instead of relying on someone being there, or most likely nont bothering to look. 

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