About and FAQ
Developing interactive product is multidisciplinary task. It's related to industrial design, programming, user experience and sometimes graphic design skills. Arduino is easy hardware prototyping platform but things get complicated when software is involved in project even if there are many great tools and frameworks for app prototyping. Sometimes it's a huge obstacle that blocks many concepts from making it to the real world. Involt is a framework to help you on early stages without advanced programming.
The key to Involt is to "make it simple" to prototype, iterate and quickly show results to your users. Involt can be a huge boost in your design process, especially during RITE method (Rapid Iterative Testing and Evaluation) and while making Proof of Concept prototype.
Why it's better than other solutions?
Quick research on the web shows that there are many great but not simple solutions. Before Involt you could choose between writing native (or hybrid) app or completly giving up flexibility by using IOT services.
Involt took a step forward toward simplicity of prototyping. The communication and HTML UI elements works "out of the box". With CSS it's easy to work on both layout and hardware interactions without going deep into programming. Practically you are a few steps forward. Imagine how helpful Involt can be in your design process whether it's personal or startup early iteration of MVP (or Proof of Concept). Instead of focusing on how to make things work you can focus on the project itself.
Who is it for?
Everyone for whom it's important to have a handy tool that doesn't require too much effort when there is no need to. Having any experience with HTML and know how to blink LED in Arduino is halfway to learn the rest of features. Involt is used mostly by students, makers and designers.
What's the future of Involt?
The primary goal was to deliver a tool "for designers by designers". It's still at the heart of Involt and defines its directions. Developing more complex programming environment would make the simplicity fade away. People who need that would stick to native apps anyway.
In future, while Involt gains its identity as more people use it, its considered to be something associated with UX/product design workflows. Why shouldn't we have good prototyping tool for interactive products when there are so many app prototyping tools and now they are successfully used everywhere?
Adding Involt to existing layout. What should I do?
Injecting interactions will not change the existing layout and there is no need of rewriting your project (except some complex JS interactions). While moving the project to mobile you don't need to recreate everything.
With hardware, you need to adapt your project to Involt sketch and its functions. It's easy but requires some planning.
- All limitations related to node-webkit and cordova (on mobile).
- Project is based on web technologies but keep in mind that Involt does not support online communication so you can't develop working IoT solution(maybe in future).
- IOS and Bluetooth LE are not supported.
- Arduino basic boards and derivatives from other companies works fine, I can't be sure for bluetooth devices if they work fine on particular system or smartphone... Please inform me if something is wrong with hardware you tested the project.
- Only one device can be connected to app at once.