Infinite Monkeys App Builder – AppNation 2011
December 1, 2011 - San Francisco, CA, - At the AppNation conference in San Francisco, Infinite Monkeys was showing their free to create app builder platform. The product is complete “wizard” based workflow that allows someone to create an HTML5 or Android App for smartphones & tablets free and with no programming knowledge. The site also can create an iPhone application, but there is a listing fee and acceptance criteria process for having the app appear on iTunes. The primary goal is to allow small businesses and organization to get an app that will track their social network and web based activities as a supplement to their existing web presence.
The free version of the app is supported by Google Ads, there is a paid version with no ads that is also available. As most SMBs and social organizations (youth sports teams, school groups, starting musical groups, etc) basically need a one-up app that will link to their currently maintained site, the Infinite Monkey workflow can create this product in minutes.
The drag and drop flow support user generated background graphics for personalization and has a large variety of built-in forms for inclusion of links for items such as RSS feeds for news and blogs, social network and shopping links, and other content modules. The next step after the content links that are bound to the predefined icons, is the selection of a skinnable GUI for the app. The flow works by having the forms based front end fill an SQL database. The database is then queried by the tool to autobuild the app and make it a completed wrapped code block.
At this time the tool is designed for entry level and SMB app developers who are not coding as thier primary job function. The flow however can be used by advanced users to incorporate CSS, HTML code and plug-ins. In the future, the code builder will have aspects that will allow integration into traditional revision control and code release flows for the advanced user. This interface will be in the form of an API.
In a test flow for the tool, we were able to create an Android and HTML5 app in under 10 minutes including the upload times for custom graphics and testing the code block. For both the Google and iTunes app marketplace, the ability to post the app for general searchability is up to the discretion and selection from those groups that the content of the app and its function meets the standards and guidelines for their download portal. This has more to do with the content and subject of the site and blogs being linked with the app than the technical compatibility of the code itself.
The apps created are located at an Infinite Monkey’s site which are easily found with a directed QR code for the free apps. This is a good option for schools and youth sports programs with limited funds. For a one time $49 fee, the app can be placed on external sites (such as iTunes) which increases the discoverablity of the code. For a one time $499 fee, the app is both highly discoverable, has no ads, and are published under your name. The free version is for open communites only, where the two paid options support closed communities with password access. The tool is available now and works in the cloud, so the only tool needed is a browser.