*UPDATE - 04/09/2013
As the project goes forward I have added a couple of things, such as multiple profiles (if you want to proce as a photographer your hourly will be different as if you quote as a web developer) for users with different sets of skills. Also I have taken a deeper dive into the Project section of the app. Here are some screenshots:
*UPDATE - 02/16/2013
This is a more in depth demo of what Abacus will achieve. I still have a long way to go in terms of designing the UI, implementing gestures and mocking up other sections that didn't make it into the demo. The idea is that the app is always progressing anyway, but I am extremely happy that it's gotten this far and that I was able to put it together with what I've learned in class.
The new features include:
This app will be a lot more complex that what a human being can achieve learning and working on it only at night, but I have to say that I am really happy of how it is progressing. I was telling the guys at work that the most important thing that I learned in the class is to dive in and try. I have been developing sites and designing user interfaces for mobile apps for years, but was always intimidated to get into the code. Now I feel that Paul has given us enough insight into where to look for information and enough knowledge to start implementing and learning from the mistakes along the way. Also I am happy to see this concept taking shape and am sure that it'll hit the app store soon!
Thanks for all the support and the positive comments and I hope we can all stay in touch to work in future projects.
*UPDATE - 02/06/2013
I was being pessimistic as to what I could accomplish and doubting that any of the material was going into my brain. Today at work I had an "eureka!" moment and I couldn't wait to get home to implement what I figured out all of a sudden.
Of course the last class was of great help because I referred to it directly to create my functionality. I can't wait to implement the rest and I am pretty sure I will have a better time understanding from here on out.
Abacus is a tool that helps creative professionals establish their prices when contracting independently. With Abacus freelancers can focus in being creative while the app calculates, suggests a quoting price and sets them up for success.
One of the key features of the app is educating creative professionals into establishing their prices. Furthermore its calculator uses an algorithm that adds up the price based on the amount of hours per project, then dividing those amounts into 3 separate buckets:
Calculations are based on a sole number that is established by the professional on his/her profile. This number can change and the educational documentation needed in order to find that perfect number is provided through the app.
Projects are added on a separate tab once quoted and approved by the prospect. Once completed, the user can mark the project as completed and is asked the amount of hours the project took. Based on that against the initial price suggested, the project is categorized as Profitable or Unprofitable. When Unprofitable the user can place a note about what went wrong as part of that project. The app keeps a log of these sub-categorized projects so that the freelancer can backtrack and learn important information about how projects are being managed in general.
Further improvements are planned in the future, but as of right now this would be the base idea. The app would be free but only giving access to the calculator. If the user wants access to the project log section they would have to do an in-app purchase of 99¢ to make it available.
This app was imagined after many years of struggle to establish my prices and not being confident about quotes proposed. More importantly I was inspired after reading the Creative Professional's Guide to Money book by the Marketing Mentor creator Ilise Benun. I highly recommend that book to anybody contracting work independently or solopreneurs.
If you want to take in this project please help me by filling out this Creative Professional Survey and passing it around. It provides me with very important information needed in order to make the right choices when developing this.