ArcTouch
We help companies forge meaningful connections with their customers and employees through lovable apps and digital products. Learn more at arctouch.com.
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ArcTouch DevOps tool box

Building a DevOps infrastructure for apps and web sites starts with having the right DevOps engineering tools. In this post, we’ll cover the essential software our DevOps engineering teams depend on. Let’s start by putting our heads in the clouds.

Cloud platforms

There are many benefits to leveraging cloud services for your server infrastructure. Most important is the ability to add computing power and storage with just a few clicks, and the flexibility to scale up on-demand as your product grows. Developing in the cloud also means applications aren’t dependent on your on-premise resources or subject to data loss if your internal systems fail. The three leading cloud providers are Amazon’s AWS, Microsoft’s Azure, and Google Cloud. …


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ArcTouch’s app design team collaborates with Figma

I recently posted a question on our app design team’s Slack channel asking about the advantages of using Figma vs. Sketch. The thread went on for a while — our team members were pretty passionate in their support of Figma’s increasingly popular app UI design tool. As the thread was growing, I was thinking it might be great source material for a useful blog post. Initially, I imagined the title of the post could be something like, “12 reasons we use Figma over Sketch.”

But as I looked more closely at our design team members’ responses, there was really one constant theme: Collaboration. …


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some of the app design tools we use to create lovable apps

Like any craft, the quality of app design is dependent upon the tools that designers wield. At ArcTouch, our app designers are constantly evaluating the latest technology and tools to see which might fit into our app design stack.

Our go-to app design tools evolve over time, just as the entire app ecosystem continues to mature. When ArcTouch started building apps more than a decade ago, there was no Sketch or Figma. Designers mostly used Adobe’s Creative Suite (before Creative Cloud existed) in combination with built-in user interface tools on iOS and Android. …


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We’ve seen it many times: Designers and developers become so completely focused on a new software user experience that they neglect the infrastructure to power it. To grow it. To be secure. To be agile enough to adapt to the many unknowns in the future. Without this infrastructure, new apps and websites start to feel old almost as soon as they are released — especially in dynamic industries.

And that’s a big reason why we’re proud to share the story of our recent (and ongoing) work with The Draft Network (TDN). …


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The question of Kubernetes vs. Docker is often raised when discussing cloud computing and containers. However, it’s not really a valid question. Kubernetes and Docker don’t compete. In fact, they are fundamentally different technologies that work well together for building, delivering, and scaling containerized apps.

Understanding how Kubernetes and Docker containerization fits into your app and web infrastructure is an important part of DevOps engineering.

First things first. What are containers?

When developers need to use a new application on a new computer, there are multiple steps to take first. Install the application. Configure it. Add a framework. Maybe even update the operating system.

What if there was a single package that had everything you needed? All the dependencies, settings, frameworks, and even security configurations already embedded in one nice, tidy, all-inclusive package. Or “container.” You just need to download it and run it. …


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iOS 14 Widgets on the home screen

Some of the biggest news from Apple’s recent Developer’s Conference was how the iPhone home screen is now easier for users to experience “glanceable” information. The most important change: a completely redesigned iOS Widgets user experience that gives developers prime placement for their apps on this valuable first screen.

In this post, we explain the redesigned iOS 14 Widgets experience, and why businesses should take advantage of them to increase app user engagement.

What is a Widget?

A Widget is a component that can be used to display a small amount of timely, relevant information, so people can see it at a glance. …


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Today’s app experiences run the gamut — from fully immersive, highly interactive sessions to a snippet of information at the very moment you need it. Apple recently introduced App Clips for iOS, which offers users a micro-experience without downloading an app — and gives businesses the chance to acquire new users outside of the crowded App Store.

How App Clips work

An App Clip is a valuable “clip” of an application available when it’s most relevant and valuable to users. In some ways, it’s like the classic try-before-you-buy experience. Users have a chance to have an engagement with a business before they fully commit to downloading their app. …


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DevOps has become a buzz word in recent years — for good reason. In today’s world of software, being “code complete” is a temporary state. Good software is a “living” thing. It’s never really done. The technology ecosystem is constantly evolving, and DevOps is the recognition that software needs continuous iterations and improvements over the course of its lifecycle.

This is especially true today in mobile and the web — forward-thinking companies are building collections of apps and digital (software) products to forge meaningful connections with their customers and employees across the IoT. To be successful in digital, companies need infrastructure, tools, and processes that scale. They need an approach that is consistent, even as team members may come and go. They need standards that ensure security and compliance. They need their development and operations teams to work as a single and cohesive unit. …


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Safe Distancing app uses wearable Bluetooth devices to encourage social distancing in the workplace.

Undeniably, COVID-19 has changed our world — including how we work. And there’s no going back. The remote workforce will grow and periodic shelter-in-place mandates that temporarily closed offices are likely to become part of our new normal. However, there will always be a need for doing in-person business. So, how, exactly do we do that safely?

We’re not medical experts. However, by all accounts, there are three key elements to our collective health and safety: testing, contact tracing, and continued social distancing.

Technology, and specifically Bluetooth proximity technology used in mobile phones, can help. Today, we announced our COVID app development services to help government entities build contact tracing apps using Apple and Google’s Exposure Notification system. And we’ve also introduced our Safe Distancing App Kit to help businesses reopen offices and factories while encouraging team members to maintain safe distances from one another. …


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Feedback is crucial for any creative professional. That’s especially true when it comes to design. We know that not every idea nor every design execution will be interpreted as we expected. So we need to put our work in front of team members — early and often — to get honest feedback before we spend too much time on a single idea.

Our app design team has created ArcTouch’s Design Critique Best Practices — a document that guides our design critique meetings. …

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