20 February 2013
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Solar Explorer: Black screen of doom

Occasionally, despite the best of intentions, things can go wrong.

I released an update to Solar Explorer for all markets on the weekend, both paid and free versions.

As a special bonus, it came free with a limited edition bug that that basically caused the app to start up with a black screen and do nothing, except burn CPU cycles.

It was a really simple error – a file the app expected to exist, had accidentally been dragged and dropped into a sub-folder between the test builds and the final release.

To top it off, my mail server had crashed from a spam overload the day before the release, so although people were sending me a big “WTF?”, I wasn’t receiving any messages.

It was 24 hours before I realised there was a problem, and I released a quick fix, but it took me a further three days to notice that I wasn’t getting any email from my apps account.

I’ve now reactivated my email, so thanks to anyone who posted a query here, or sent me an email.

I’ll have to have a stern chat with the quality control department!

Blackberry Apps

Meanwhile, I’m still waiting for Blackberry to get around to testing the apps I submitted to the final port-a-thon, so long ago.

I’ve been busy submitting updates for all of them, and they’ve just been piling up – one app has actually got three versions waiting for release.


Unfortunately, Blackberry don’t provide a way for me to delete the obsolete versions, so I hope they notice the higher release numbers and don’t waste time on them. It could explain why they are so slow, if they have to slowly make their way through obsolete versions, while even more are piling up.

Because of this, I have bothered to submit the latest Solar Explorer update yet, because it’ll just slow them further. I’ll release it once they’ve cleared the backlog.

At this point, I’ve technically had only one app accepted or the $100 port-a-thon payout. I hope they don’t just ignore the other four apps because they haven’t had time to test them. Admittedly, they were rejected the first time because of screen orientation issues on the new BB phones, but that was beyond my control because hardware for testing wasn’t available at the time.