Weekly Indie Log #33

Weekly Indie Log #33

Topics: Context Menu, Dashboard Layout, Shipping Consistency

Check out my apps: HabitKit, Liftbear and WinDiary

Another week, another update: This week I released something new for my habit tracking app HabitKit. Version 1.7.2 introduces a quicker way to check off yesterday's habits and reorder your dashboard: I implemented a context menu which opens on long-press and offers two actions: "Complete Yesterday" and "Reorder Habits".

These are two user flows which have cause a lot of confusion in the past. Previously, you had to open the habit detail page and then the calendar view to check off a past date. But this is such a common use case that many people requested an easier way to do this. Happy that I finally got around to release this. Same reason for the reordering feature: In an earlier version you had to open the settings menu to reorder your habits on the dashboard. Many users never discovered this sub menu and asked whether reordering is even possible or not.

I used the awesome super_context_menu package (made by the cool people at Superlist which is - by the way - the coolest Flutter desktop app out there). If you're looking for a way to implement a similar menu, I can highly recommend it! I love the API and that it even adapts the look & feel to different platforms. I can also imagine adding more functionality to the context menu in HabitKit, for example directly opening the edit or calendar view from the dashboard.

Another task I knocked off this week: I created an in-app event for the iOS App Store to promote the big widget update. I usually do this for all major updates but this time I forgot to set it up for the release. Glad that I got this one out now! In terms of viability: I have no idea whether this will boost your ranking or have other perks! But it looks nice and I like to imagine that it has some benefits...

Shipping Consistency

It feels really really great to get back into the habit of shipping consistently. After developing version 1.7 (the big widget revamp) for so long, it's awesome to be back at releasing regularly. As an independent indie hacker, it's super easy to get lost in a huge update and lose motivation after a while. Especially when it's such a technically challenging task like the big rewrite of the widget section of the app. I basically had to dive into multiple new native programming languages and UI frameworks at the same time.

From now on, I will aim for a small release at least every two weeks to keep the shipping muscle active and constantly improve the app with smaller features. Work on big new things will happen more in the background and not slow down the smaller things like bug fixes and quality-of-life improvements.

Dashboard Layout

I also started working on another cool feature for HabitKit: Many people requested that they would like to customize the look of their dashboard, especially when they have a large amount of habits and just want to check off a specific one. In this use case it's a little bit cumbersome to scroll through the (very long) list of habits including the consistency grid.

First step: I added a bottom (navigation?) bar to the dashboard of the app. It hides when the user starts scrolling and re-appears when he/she stops. By clicking on the different icons you can toggle between the different view modes of the app. The first one is the classic mode, keeping the good-old look that made HabitKit popular. The second one is a more compact view, offering a great way to check off your habits more easily. The third one (I call it the "split"-view), displays your habit in a 2xN grid and is a great compromise between the first two options.

I will play around with this new feature on my own phone (I use HabitKit every day and would call myself HabitKit's biggest powerusers) and see how that's working out for me. Still looking for a way to make the "Compact"-view more exciting (it looks so dull, but maybe that's exactly what it should be?). Anyway, developing new small features like these is super fun and have a lot of fun right now!

That's it for this week, see you in the next one 👋

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