It’s barely been two years since the HTC Desire/Nexus One made a splash as the world’s first phone with a 1GHz CPU… and now we’ve got quad core 1.4GHz 1080P tablets on the way.
When I first started developing Solar Explorer, late in 2010, it was an absolute struggle to get it to run at an acceptable pace. Since then, both my development tools and portable devices have improved to the point where it’s no longer critical to optimise every little thing my apps.
Of course, it’s hard to break the habit of trying to constantly minimise resource usage.
With this in mind, I decided to do one more quick update of both Solar Explorer and Exoplanet Explorer, completely re-creating the background galaxy texture used in HD mode. The new version features more detail, has stars scattered through the sky and it’s also 50% larger than the previous one so it should look better on big screen devices.
While working on the background graphics, I decided to re-size the splash screens for both to 1280×768. I also increased the colour saturation and replaced the dull galaxy image in Exoplanet Explorer with something more colourful, a Hubble shot of the Andromeda Galaxy.
Thanks again to NASA for providing so many great public domain images from Hubble.
In terms of app functionality, there’s been some minor bug fixes and I’ve modified the options menu in all versions to save changes immediately after applying them, rather than when the app quits.
I also performed an exoplanet update this morning, merging in changes that were made to the Encyclopaedia yesterday, and it all went nice and smooth.
With all that out of the way, I think both apps have reached a point where I can leave them alone for a little while and stop bombarding you with new updates.
Time to focus on something new!