Hey everyone, I interviewed John Goering a while ago but I never got around to posting it on the community, so here it is:
Today we asked John (@epaga, the legendary developer of IF-A and IF-I) some questions about him and his apps.
What inspired you to create IFA?
I saw there was an API (a way for other apps to connect to IF) and thought that was one of the coolest ideas ever - a mobile app offering mod-ability like a PC game! So, being a developer, I started keeping my eyes open for some little app I could do, purely for fun.
I realized I kept accidentally getting overspeed violations without noticing, so one afternoon I read how to connect to the API, figured out how to access the current speed, and then played a sound when you exceeded the speed. It worked! The “trick” was figuring out how to keep the app running in the background, which was simply to play a silent track - when an app is playing audio, iOS doesn’t shut it down.
That first “proof of concept” took me only a few hours. So I made a short recording of it and posted it to the forum (right here). There was such huge positive response to it I ended up making a full app out of it.
Which app do you prefer? IFA or IFI?
I’d probably say IF-A at this point since when I fly, it tends to be just a short flight before bed, so I don’t feel like setting up an extra device.
Do you see yourself making more of these 3rd party apps?
Very likely, yes. It’s a blast, the community is great and positive, and… (see next question)
Did you expect the amount of downloads that you got from your apps?
Not by a long shot. Not even close.
I did IF-A for my own fun. I thought maybe I’ll get a little bit of side cash. I did virtually no “market research” since I wasn’t taking it all that seriously.
I only later realized that the crowd I was going to be selling the app to was not just a few hundred geeks like me, but that there were - potentially - many tens of thousands of us - and that the community was growing at an impressive speed. I was waking up to the fact that this was not only going to be fun but could be a very profitable thing to do, as well!
Are you a real world pilot or have done any pilot training?
Nope! Flight simming since I was a kid, but no real world stuff at all.
Do you really think we are “intelligent and beautiful human beings”?
I got that line (which you too can hear if you purchase an in-app in one of the apps - just sayin’) from a fellow software developer called Matt Gemmell. I cracked up when I saw it and so have put it into my apps ever since.
If you want a serious answer - yep, I think we are all made in the image of God, which is what gives us all value, worth, and makes us beautiful creatures. 😁
How many lines of code (approximately) have you written into your apps?
IF-A is somewhere around 8-10k lines of code, IF-I maybe roughly half that.
What do you do for a living? Is it making these apps, or something else as well?
I work as a full-time Java and iOS software developer at i-net software in Berlin. That’s my day job, and I love working there.
On the side I do freelance work (hire me! 😁) and make my own apps like the In-Flight apps and Mindscope (into which I put an order of magnitude more coding work than IF-A but which is making me an order of magnitude less revenue than IF-A 😁).
Thanks for the questions! 🙂
If you haven’t already, go download (or at least take a look at his amazing apps).