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Foster Parent Appointment Assistant Not Quite Ready

Posted by Philip Foster on September 10, 2013 at 6:00 AM Comments comments (0)

We were hoping to have Foster Parent Appointment Assistant ready for release some time ago. However, our efforts to relese the best possible add on for Foster Parent Assistant have delayed the release of the latest add on for Foster Parent Assistant. We are still hoping to be able to announce a release date within the next week. Once the release is announced it will only be about two weeks before the add on is released. In addition, once we announce a release date, we will also post a number of screen shots for Appointment Assistant.

So, what is the cause for the latest delay? We wanted to provide foster parents with the ability to synchronize data in the appointment add on with the calendar app already on their device. This will allow parents to access appointments added through the assistant on their regular device calendar. That seemed like an important feature to include. So, we are working on making that a reality. Unfortunately, this will not be available to all of our users. Foster parents using a version of Android earlier than Ice Cream Sandwich will not be able to synchronize the two calendars. Android simply did not make this possible before ICS. However, we do not want to leave our parents with an earlier version of Android out. Therefore, there will be two separate versions of Appointment Assistant. One will be for users with a pre-ICS version of Android and one will be for parents with ICS or later. The add on for the earlier versions of Android will run on Ice Cream Sandwich (and Jelly Bean), so users who really don't want the calendar synchronization will still be able to use the older version.

Anyway, that is the reason for the delay. We hope our users will be understanding. Most importantly, we hope that once it is released, foster parents will appreciate the time and effort that went into releasing the best possible appointment scheduling solution to meet their needs as foster parents.

We will be updating the website as release day approaches, so check back often.

Foster Parent Assistant Version 1.2 Released In Response To Customer Request

Posted by Philip Foster on July 23, 2013 at 6:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Yesterday we released Foster Parent Assistant version 1.2.  This version made a couple of changes/additions.  First, we have added the ability to delete pictures from a child's photo album from right inside Foster Parent Assistant.  This will allow parents to delete those pictures from three years ago that they no longer want in the child's album.

In addition, we made a small change to the look of most of the screens in Foster Parent Assistant (again we are talking about the main application, not any add-ons).  We had a user review our app (thank you for your input).  He pointed out that smart phone users do not need the reminder to swipe the screen to navigate within the application.  That was a point well taken.  We have removed that reminder from all screens where it previously appeared.  We hope that this will better meet users' expectations.  We did leave a small "reminder" at the bottom of the screens however.  This was done for a very good reason.  The screens in Foster Parent Assitant scroll.  That is, the screens are often larger than the screen of the device (especially on phones), so the user has the ability to scroll up and down to see the portion of the screen that is hidden from view.  This scrolling works top to bottom and left right.  Now, scrolling is very similar to swiping in Android.  This presented us with a small problem.  How were we going to make certain that the application differentiated between a swipe and a scroll.  We did this by adding a special navigation section at the bottom of each screen.  This section does not scroll.  It is always visible at the bottom of the screen.  When a parent swipes on this section, the application navigates between foster children.  When a user swipes on any other part of the screen, the application will not navigate between records.  Therefore, we felt like some kind of notification to the user was necessary in order for users to understand this detail.  This is also why we have not completely removed the text from the bottom of the screen.  We have simply made the text a little less obvious in nature.

We hope that this makes sense.  We also hope that this will serve as a reminder to our customers to let us know what they think of Foster Parent Assistant.  We are listening and we will do our best to accomodate parents' ideas.  Enjoy the application.


Foster Parent Assistant Appointments Add On In Development

Posted by Philip Foster on June 11, 2013 at 6:00 AM Comments comments (0)

We are hard at work on the next add on for Foster Parent Assistant.  This add on will be an appointment scheduling add on.  Foster Parents are asked to meet with attorneys, child's social woker, their own social worker, etc.  And this doesn't include the basics such as doctor's appointments.  Our latest add on will integrate appointment scheduling into Foster Parent Assistant.  Parents will be able to add appointments for their foster child(ren).  These appointments will be automatically associated with the current foster child.  Parents will also be able to cancel appointments.

In addition to these basic appointment scheduling features, the appointment scheduling add on will allow parents to post information from the appointment back to the main Foster Parent Assistant application.  For example, suppose that the parent has a meeting with the child's social worker.  They discuss a lot of important issues regarding the foster child.  Once the appointment is over, the parent can enter summary information for the appointment.  Then the parent will have the option to post this information back to the main application.  This information can be saved in the main application in one of two places.  It can be saved as a new conversation or it can be saved as a new note for the selected child.  Once this is done, the parent will be able to pull up this information directlry from the Foster Parent Assistant main application.

Android devices generally include a calendar application.  It is our goal for apointments entered in the add on to automatically be posted to the device's calendar applicaiton.  This will allow parents to view their foster parent related appointments alongside their other appointments.  We have not yet started coding this feature, so there is a chance that it will not make it into the first release of the add on.  As we begin to work on this feature, we will keep our users updated with a new blog.

We are hoping to release the appointment add on before the end of July.  As of right now, we are in the early stages of development, so this could change as we move further along in the development process.  So, stay tuned.

Foster Parent Assistant Update And Add On Released!

Posted by Philip Foster on June 3, 2013 at 7:00 AM Comments comments (0)

We have released an update to Foster Parent Assistant. We have also released the first add-on for Foster Parent Assistant. The add-on is a financial add-on.

The update to the main application fixed a few small bugs. It also adds a new feature. Parents can now take pictures from inside Foster Parent Assistant and those pictures will automatically be associated with the currently selected child. There is no limit (other than space on the user's SD card) to the number of pictures which may be associated with a child. Once the pictures have been taken they can be viewed one at a time within the application.

We have also released our first add on for Foster Parent Assistant. This is the financial add on. This add on allows parents to keep track of financial records on each of their foster children. Parents can enter information on income and expenses. In addition, the add on allows parents to designate an expense as reimbursable. Once an expense has been designated as reimbursable it can be updated once it has been reimbursed.

For more information on the update and the add on please visit our products page.

The Foster Parent Assistant main application is required to run the add on. As before, the main application is FREE. The financial add on sells for $.99. Both are available on Google Play.



Foster Parent Assistant Update and Financial Assistant To Be Released on June 3, 2013

Posted by Philip Foster on May 17, 2013 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

June 3, 2013 will be the release date for Foster Parent Assistant version 1.1.  The new version will fix a couple of small bugs.  In addition, it will have two new features:

  • Take picture inside Foster Parent Assistant.  Parents will be able to take pictures of their foster child(ren) inside Foster Parent Assistant.  These pictures will be associated with a particular child and will be viewable inside the application when the parent is viewing the associated foster child.  There is no limit (other than space on the SD card) to how many pictures may be associated with a child.
  • Foster Parent Assistant Help.  The application will now provide access to a help website from directly inside the application.  Because it is a website, we will be able to update the documentation without any need to update Foster Parent Assistant.  In addition, we will provide a link on our support page to the help website for users who may need information at a time when they do not have access to Foster Parent Assistant.

In addition to version 1.1 of Foster Parent Assistant, June 3 will also be the release date for Financial Assistant.  This is the first add-on for Foster Parent Assistant.  Parents must already have Foster Parent Assistant installed in order to access Financial Assistant.  The add-on interfaces with Foster Parent Assistant by accessing information for the current child.  Financial Assistant functions operate on the currently selected child from Foster Parent Assistant.  Financial Assistant will have the following features:

  • Enter income and expense categories.  This will allow parents to track information by these categories.
  • Enter income and expense information (e.g. transaction date, category, amount, a brief description)
  • Edit existing transactions (income and expense)
  • Post expenses to be reimbursed
  • Post reimbursements for particular expenses once they are received.  The application allows users to post the actual amount of the reimbursement, so it is possible to track partial reimbursements.

Financial Assistant will sell on Google Play (like all of our apps) for $.99.

Stay tuned for information on additional add-ons in the near future!

Take Pictures Inside Foster Parent Assistant

Posted by Philip Foster on May 2, 2013 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

We are working on a new version of Foster Parent Assistant.  It will be released at the same time as the financial add-on.  This new version will fix a few bugs.  It will also include one exciting new feature.  We are adding the ability to save pictures with each foster child's record.  THe user will be able to save as many pictures as they wish (and as the space on their device will allow) for each foster child.  Then they will be able to navigate through these pictures when they have the appropriate child selected.  We feel that this adds a more personal level to Foster Parent Assistant and simply makes it a more complete application.  We hope that our users are as excited about this new feature as we are.  As always, stay tuned for more information as we are still working on both the finincial add-on and the update for the Foster Parent Assistant main application.

Foster Parent Assistant Financial Add-On Coming Soon

Posted by Philip Foster on April 26, 2013 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

We are working hard on finishing up the Financial Add On for Foster Parent Assistant.  This will be the first add on for the new application.  The add-on will provide foster parents with the ability to keep track of financial records for each of their foster children.  As with the main application, all information in the financial add-on is for the selected child.  The child is selected in the main application and then their information can be accessed and updated in the financial add-on.  Here is a preliminary list of features for the financial add-on:

  • Enter income/expense categories to be used for transactions (e.g.  food, clothing, etc.).
  • View income/expense totals and balances on the startup screen
  • Enter income/expense transactions
  • Edit income/expense transactions
  • Expenses can be entered as reimbursable
  • Update expense transactions once they have been reimbursed

This is the preliminary list of features.  Once the application is ready for release we may have some additional features to report.  Stay tuned.  We are hoping to release the application sometime during the second half of May.  We are hoping to announce a release date sometime in the next couple of weeks.


Foster Parent Assistant Available on Google Play

Posted by Philip Foster on April 16, 2013 at 5:40 AM Comments comments (0)

Foster Parent Assistant has been released on Google Play.  As promised the application is free.  In the near future we will be releasing add-ons for the application.  Our current plan is to charge $.99 for each of these add-ons.  Below is a list of features included with Foster Parent Assistant.

  • Enter information on foster children (name, DOB, biological parent name, the date they arrived in your home).
  • Once a child is adopted (or leaves your home) enter the date that this happened.  A child who is no longer a "foster" child will no longer appear in the software.  They are still saved in the database.  A future add-on may provide access to these former foster children.
  • Enter information on attorneys and social workers for the children.
  • Call a child's social worker (or attorney) from right inside the application.
  • Maintain information on important conersations regarding your foster child (who you talked to, when you talked, how long, what you discussed, etc.).  That way the foster parent has a record if anyone comes back and questions something or if you simply need to jog your memory.
  • Maintain general notes on each foster child.  If you need to simply make yourself a note (maybe a reminder about something) there is a screen for writing notes about the selected child.

And this is just the start.  Once we start releasing add-ons, the application's capabilities will expand greatly.  So, stay tuned!

Foster Parent Assistant To Be Released On April 15, 2013

Posted by Philip Foster on March 25, 2013 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

We are putting the finishing touches on Foster Parent Assistant (that will be the final name for our foster parent tracking application).  Nearly all features have been added to the application and we are on target for an April 15, 2013 release date.  We are currently working on putting the final polish on the application.  Shortly we will begin working on the first add-on for the application.  The first add-on will be a financial add-on.  The add-on will allow foster parents to keep track of expenses (by foster child).  It will also allow users to keep track of income for their foster children (e.g. from a stipend).  The add-on will then keep track of balances and expense reimbursements.  We felt like this would be a fairly sought after addition to Foster Parent Assistant.  That is why we chose to make that the first add-on released.

We also want to explain how Foster Parent Assistant will be sold.  As with all of our apps, it will be sold exclusively on Google Play.  The main application will be FREE.  This will allow users to track basic information without any expense to them.  This will also allow users to customize the application to suit their particular needs.  Users will be able to download the add-ons as needed.  The add-ons will sell for $.99.  Note that the add-ons require the main application to run.  However, no add-on is dependent on any other add-on.  That means that if you know exactly which feature(s) you wish to add to the application, these features can be added by downloading the appropriate add-on without having to worry about download (and paying for) another add-on first.

We have set up our forums in anticipation of the release.  There are forums for technical support as well as forums for requesting new features.

Very soon we will be announcing the release date for Foster Parent Assistant.  At that time, we will also provide a list of features and several screen shots.  Stay tuned!

Foster Parent Tracker Application Release Delayed

Posted by Philip Foster on March 1, 2013 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

We are still working on the Foster Parent Tracker application.  We had hoped to have it ready for release in early March.  However, early March has arrived and we are not yet ready to release the application.  We have been fixing some bugs in recent weeks.  They are not major issues, but we want to be sure to release the best, most stable application possible.  Pushing back the release date will also allow us to add some additional features to the application for its initial release rather than waiting for an update.  As of right now, we are confident that we will be ready for an early April release.  The application should be complete well ahead of that time, but due to scheduling issues, the release date will need to be pushed back to early April.  We are hoping to announce an official release date by the middle of March.  We hope that our users are as excited about this application as we are here at Pine Point Mobile Solutions.  Stay tuned for more information.