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Friday
Dec282012

Attendance2 News (Contacts importing and other new features)

I was able to find some time after my fall semester completed to work on the app and submitted version 2.0 today (Friday 12/28/12). I've added basic ability to import from your Contacts/AddressBook. It's not as customizable as the CSV import as far as matching fields to be imported, but I think it should make the handful of people that wanted this functionality happy. If there's enough interest, I'll try to add more features to make the import more customizable. I also added URL support so Attendance2 can be used with the Launch Center Pro app. With one action from the Launch Center Pro app, you'll be able to open Attendance2 for a given course, add the next date and begin taking attendance for the date. Other improvements include the ability to view reports within the app in table form, totals for each person on the spreadsheet report, and the ability to swipe left/right on the take attendance screen to move to a later/earlier date.

Here is how the URL support works in version 2.0 and higher.

attendance2:// (launches attendance2)

attendance2://course-name  (opens course-name)

attendance2://course-name?take=yes  (open course-name and selects default date to take attendance)

attendance2://course-name?add=yes   (open course-name and add next date)

attendance2://course-name?add=yes&take=yes  (open course-name, add next date, and take attendance for default date)

Here is an update about the bug that 1-2% of people encountered back in September. Version 1.2.1 appears to have fixed it as I have no reports of the problem from anyone running version 1.2.1 or later. It is clear Apple definitely had some bugs for the new features they added to Core Data in iOS 5 (which Attendance2 was using). For those with some programming background and interested in the details, here is a blog post by someone listing some of the issues. Unfortunately, I did not find that until October (and never ran into the problems during my 6 months of testing the app), but the workarounds I used in version 1.2.1 match some of the workarounds listed there. I have also heard other developers confirm the problems in various podcasts this fall. So at this point, I feel fairly confident the problem is solved, but I still recommend people backup their data every day as you never know if your device will break, get lost, or stolen.

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