Knockout

If there is one thing I’ve learned recently it’s that keeping it simple is almost always the best course of action. Instead of spending months or even years perfecting something, launch it and figure out if anyone even wants it. That’s not to say you can cut corners, but you don’t need every bell and whistle in order to release.

That said, as much as I wanted to add support for a dozen video sites in my latest project, it’s launching with just one. Knockout will open any YouTube video link in a popup, solving one of the greatest problems facing our generation… needing to multitask at all times.

You can grab it in the Chrome Web Store today.

Louder

My quest to release several new projects this year continues with the release of Louder into the Chrome Web Store.

Louder is a Chrome App that allows users to quickly access several popular music sites in a frameless webview (similar to an iframe). The frameless webview allows you to use each website like a native desktop application removing tabs and other browser functionality. It might seem like a step backwards, but having a standalone app dedicated to audio can be convenient.  Louder also has some additional functionality you wouldn’t get in the browser, such as now playing notifications with quick actions and keyboard shortcuts to control playback.

I’ve also integrated Louder with Google Cloud Messaging. The reasoning for integrating Google Cloud Messaging (besides wanting to try out push notifications) was to allow for targeted messaging to reengage users, and as a way to on-board users quickly based on usage. Push notifications can be tricky, and on-boarding is a beast unto itself which is why I plan to heavily rely on A/B testing to get things just right.