ComicBookLover for iPhone joins Weight Watchers

One of the fun aspects of iPhone programming is that it challenges and encourages programmers to think about multi-threading and resource constraints. Thus you might notice that apart from improved performance, ComicBookLover 0.4 for iPhone downloads and installs much faster than before. This is because it’s been on a diet!

The original Alpha release made use of FaceBook’s Three20 framework, which was useful to bootstrap rapid development of an app, but eventually I would have to write my own code especially as I was only using some of Three20’s image viewing classes, which were rather generic, and trying to subclass unfamiliar code can be a painful exercise. If you look around, you might notice that one or two other iPhone comic readers make use of Three20…

It was also easy to reduce the overall app bundle size by simply removing two free comics from the distribution. Instead, the app now includes one free comic at a decent resolution, which looks great on both iPhone and iPad.

The result is an app which no longer weighs in at over 20MB (the limit for installing apps over 3G), but instead at around 10MB, meaning the app can be installed over 3G as well as WiFi. This limit is worth remembering as AT&T and O2 have announced that they will be removing unlimited downloads from their iPhone data plans once the iPhone 4 ships.

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6 Responses to ComicBookLover for iPhone joins Weight Watchers

  1. Anonymous says:

    The only bad thing is that pages now actually take time to load when paging through a comic, whereas in 0.3 (and prior) page turns were seamlessmand instant. Reading on my iPad went from a pleasure to an annoyance. Any chance that this is fixed in the iPad version that Apple hasn't approved yet?

  2. Simon says:

    Two things to note here.Firstly, if you are paging through the comic quickly rather than reading pages, you might see loading. If you were to read the page at a normal pace you wouldn't notice the background loading when moving between pages. I'll be adding a proper pager/navigator to the app so you don't have to page through the comic page by page.Secondly, the iPad version reads the comics *without* conversion. So the images are as intended and adding a comic is almost instant. I could add pre-processing in future, which would slow down adding a comic as each page would need to be converted first – this is what happens on the iPhone. The loading indicator you might see, if reading and moving to a new page (not paging as above), could be due to the images in your comic being extremely large e.g. over 2000 pixels in one dimension or the other. You'll see this if you have landscape / double-facing spreads.I'm constantly looking to improve the performance of the app and the image handling, so thanks for your feedback.

  3. Unteins says:

    Hey Simon,If what you are saying is true, then there is either something wrong with my iPad or CBL. I am getting the spinning wheel on most page turns when reading comics on iPad. Not every single time, but enough to make the experience less than comic book like.Does the 2000 pixel issue come into play if ANY pages are over 2000 pixels or does it just affect the one page? If it is supposed to only affect one page, then still an issue here.I do like CBL for iPad so far. I also have a number of suggestions, but before I make them I want to play a little bit more.

  4. Simon says:

    Unteins, send me the comic at support@comicbooklover.com. Might be the image format, etc. Will take a look.

  5. filipe says:

    PLEASE add some brightness control on comiclover. I use to read comics at night on ibook. The only reason i didn't migrate to Comiclover is the brightness! PLEASE

  6. jackob says:

    hello, I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed your blog and this post. You make some very informative points. Keep up the great work!Thank YouiPhone programmer

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