How I Made the Official Cure CMD App
Updated: Feb 18
Find the Cure CMD app in both the App Store and Google Play by searching “Cure CMD”
It feels like several lifetimes ago at this point when I was sitting in the Introduction to iOS Application Development course at Temple University. It was towards the end of my junior year of college and I was finally starting to find an interesting branch of the computer science major. I was not sure how I was going to pursue this new discovery further, but I knew I was into it. My resume was feeling pretty empty and I knew I would have to start pursuing an internship for the upcoming summer sooner or later, something I had kind of been dreading. Adulthood was looming.
While I was sitting in class I decided to do one of the bravest things one can do as an adult: I opened my email. As fate would have it, there was an email from Cure CMD, asking me to come and develop their mobile app as I was sitting in class learning how to do that very thing! How convenient.
Once I started developing, some of the hardest lessons I learned involved the planning of the app in the beginning stages. At the time, I thought I was doing the right things and planning the best I could, but I learned as I went along that there were several things I had missed initially. Ultimately, I was able to correct issues as I went along, but at moments in the developing process it slowed me down and forced me to double back on parts of the app that were already developed in order to make it work. I really gained an appreciation for how important planning is when it comes to developing software. As a wise man once said, everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth (or find a bug in their code!).
Eighteen months and several versions later, the app is live on both the Google Play and App Store for Android and iOS respectively! It has been fantastic to be able to work on this project and I am excited for where it goes next. We’ve been able to lay the foundations of a great app with some really cool features and will be updating it as time goes on.
The goal of the app is to bring important CMD information to people on widely-used platforms to ensure easy access and sharing. With that idea at the core of the app, we’ve developed a place for users to read and distribute information such as the full Cure CMD Pulmonary Guide, the Hypoglycemia Protocol, descriptions of common subtypes and relevant terms, and information on how to deal with the potential of COVID-19 as someone with CMD Since the main focus of the app is to present the guide information distributed by Cure CMD, the home screen is dedicated to displaying the guides and their outlines in a dropdown format. Each guide is separated by their sections for organization and easy access. I tried to make the presentation of the guides as familiar as possible and so I took inspiration from apps like the Apple Books app and the Kindle app to accomplish that. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?
I also thought it would be a cool idea to create a highlighting or bookmarking feature for the guide, so I tried my best to do so. Unfortunately, I was only able to do it for iOS devices for the time being, but I’m hoping to have this feature for Android devices soon! If you have an iPhone or an iPad and you hold your finger down to select some text in one of the guides, you can choose to highlight or make a note on the selected text. All of your bookmarks can be found by tapping on the book button at the top left of the home screen, where all your bookmarks are saved locally. This way, if you find some important information, you don’t have to scroll through the app each time in order to find it.
The app also has a new and improved search feature that allows the user to search for any keyword in any of the guides on the app. The first iteration released last fall was a bit rudimentary, but the new version allows users to refine their search by guide. The guides can be extensive and sometimes you just need to find that one brief section, so hopefully the search feature can help with that!
The final major feature is actually a new one, and that is the inclusion of all the blog posts that can also be found on the website. Cure CMD shares some great content through their News and Stories section on the website and now you can find those posts in the app! The rest of the app lets you access the CMDIR, links to scientific publications, and ways in which to get in touch with the Cure CMD team.
Developing this app was such a cool experience and I feel like I’ve learned so much. Going into it, I had a very basic understanding of how to develop apps and how to write code. There were certain things I learned in my classes but there is only so much of an understanding you can have until you’ve actually done the work. I am a very hands-on learner and so I had trouble absorbing ideas when I was in lectures at college. I have found that I learn better when I’m just doing it instead of thinking about it. Since I had a foundation of understanding at the beginning of this process but by no means was I proficient, a lot of my learning was done online. Lots of Google searches, YouTube lessons, and self-teaching. I’ve discovered this is the best way for me to learn. In addition to creating a great app for you all to use, I’m grateful and excited that I now have a much deeper understanding of software development!
This is just the beginning for the Cure CMD app. If you have any feedback or suggestions, please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org because I’m excited to improve now that it’s live!