Mat Border Calculator

Mat Border Calculator - student project

Project Video




I frame photos and artwork as a hobby. It's a lot of work/math to cut the large 40x32" mat boards to fit in a frame. I think it could be easier and that's where the iPhone enters the picture.

I have been looking for that perfect iPhone app, but I haven't found it. To fix this gap, I'm going to design an app to help me measure and visualize different sizes, colors, and layouts.

A Mat Border app will help...

  • Simplify the math
  • Create a visual preview
  • Remember previous layouts

Milestone 6 - 5/25/13

  • Updated the UI
  • Added new artwork and reconfigured the layout
  • Working on a new crop screen

Mat Border Calculator - image 1 - student project

Mat Border Calculator - image 2 - student project

Milestone 5 - 2/15/13

I've added gestures to control the size of the mat board and the image. It scales the image preview as you slide left/right or up/down on the numbers.

Notes: Now that I can do everything through touch I don't need the "Calculate" button. I have it always calculate and then there is no need for an additional button!



Mat Border Calculator - image 3 - student project

Mat Border Calculator - image 4 - student project

Milestone 4 - 2/7/13

Added more functionality to calculate the "live preview" Now you can see how changing the values changes the proportions of the image to the mat board size.

I also integrated with the photo library, to allow users to customize the "default image."

Mat Border Calculator - image 5 - student project

Milestone 3 - 2/5/13

Fleshed out the basic functionality in Xcode.

Mat Border Calculator - image 6 - student project

Milestone 2 - 1/28/13

I've started sketching my ideal app controls using gestures. I'm a big advocate for gestures because they can make apps more modern and usable (Look at Clear).

Lots of apps have tons of text fields, which is ok for beginners, but I want something more modern. I hate typing in numbers and want a special user interface (UI) widget that users finger taps and swipes. I want to drag left/right or up/down to change numbers without any popups.

Mat Border Calculator - image 7 - student project

Old Style UI - Mat Layout

Most apps suffer from poor UI design. Lets look at an example app that has all the fields, but it's hard to use. Why?

  1. It's tedious to type sizes on an iPhone/iPad. (less taps is better)
  2. The app should prevent bad input. (make it smart!)
  3. Use modern interface language and interaction to control. (gestures)
  4. Dynamic drawing - show a live preview! I want visual feedback as a user

Mat Border Calculator - image 8 - student project

Milestone 1 - 12/9/12

I've sketched out what the math looks like when I'm framing. It's never this organized in my scrap paper, but I need to think about all these things. An app would simplfiy the math, so I only have to measure and then adjust layout.

Mat Border Calculator - image 9 - student project


Let me know if you've ever framed artwork or have any feedback.

Paul Solt

iPhone App Expert