When building a new house, people face literally hundreds of decisions. From the number of rooms, right down to the tap styles and location of power points. With so many decisions required, it’s difficult to keep track of all the choices made. NewHouse is a Windows 8 app that helps you store that information.
After developing the techAU app, I turned my development skills to this app, which was actually born out of self interest. Weird things happen when you turn 30. In around 12 months time I plan on building a house and foreseen the volume of decisions required when researching and forming my must-have list. While some people I spoke to used an excel spreadsheet to maintain their list, there is now a much, much better way.
The app makes use of a number of Windows 8’s new features, being a Share Target being a key one. This means while you’re browsing the web for items to go in your dream home, NewHouse is there to capture each choice. Just add a title and allocate the item to a room and the items gets added.
There’s also provisions to add new rooms to match your plans, this means if you want a 4th bedroom you can add it. If you don’t have an Ensuite, you can delete it. We’ll start you off with some sample data items to give you some suggestions, but these can all be removed by using the Settings menu and selecting Reset.
Behind scenes the app uses a SQLite database to hold you data so it doesn’t disappear when you close the app. While storing this data in your local app storage worked, there was something better. NewHouse stores it’s database in your roaming folder, this means if you use the app on another machine, you’re items sync across to that app. The synchronisation takes around 5 minutes and requires your to be logged in under your same Microsoft account but is seriously cool when you see it happen.
The app also features a couple of additional views which include Gallery which shows you all of your items from all rooms in one visual grid. Clicking on that item will take you into the parent room. The other, potentially more interesting view is the Summary view. This presents a single list of items complete with sort controls. If you’ve spent the time to add prices to your items, you’ll also get a total price for your NewHouse items in the top-right.
For more information, head to http://techau.tv/apps/newhouse/ or go direct to the app preview with the link below. NewHouse is available in the Windows 8 Store now and costs A$1.99. Currently the app only supports x86 and x64 processors due to an issue with the ARM build, expect this and many other new features in future updates.