Crescent Moon Games Will Release ‘Reed’, Android-Exclusive Platformer, on iPhone and iPad

Crescent Moon Games is going to publish the Android-exclusive platformer Reed by PXLink on iOS later this year, and it’s going to have iOS gamers wondering what else on Android they’re missing out on. The game’s a bit similar in theme to Cat Bird [Free], though I only bring this title up as a reference, since Reed pre-dates the game. In each level, you have to collect a large floating cube in order to unlock the exit, while trying to survive spikes, dart shooters, breakaway platforms, and wandering enemies. The game does promise some tricky platforming sections, and your only real tool is a double jump, but the game boasts quick restarts so you can get right back in the action after you die.

Reed‘s pixel art is quite impressive. The game has somewhat of a low-resolution, blocky look with thick outlines, but the art still appears incredibly detailed. The game does look like it’s behind an Instagram filter the entire time with the color usage, but it gives the game a different look from the similar Cat Bird. The animation in particular is impressive. The developer put a lot of time and work into making the cube that players have to collect in each level the most impressive object in the game. The cube looks and feels important, and satisfying to collect.

Reed is a fun and challenging platformer, great for pick-up-and-play sessions, or for sitting down and trying to tackle a bunch of platforming challenges for a couple hours. And it comes in at the criminally low price of $ 0.99. Reed should garner attention from Apple and the iOS gaming community, so why wasn’t it on iOS already? Well, apparently the developer only had Android and PC, which made it difficult to release for iOS, since that requires a Mac specifically. And if a developer is making games primarily for the love and not necessarily as a business, well, maybe buying a Mac to release on iOS isn’t the highest priority. Also consider that a game might easily not make its costs for porting and hardware back if it doesn’t gain any traction!

What this means is that Android has plenty of hidden gems to find, as the sheer number of developers that might not have Macs and just want to release a mobile game for fun is incredibly high. Reed shows that some of these titles have the kind of quality that makes them well worth your time and money. If you have an Android device, you can play the game right now for only $ 0.99. If you don’t have an Android, keep an eye out for the Crescent Moon-published iOS release later this year, and check out the thread in the TouchArcade Upcoming Games forum for more details.


Industry Innovators: Meet Tara Reed, the woman changing the way we think about developing software

You’ve had a brilliant idea for an app, you’re really excited to get it off the ground, one catch, you’ve never coded in your life and the one time you thought you’d give it a go – it felt like a glitch in the Matrix.

Don’t worry, help is at hand – Tara Reed is the founder of Apps Without Code. Tara has a formidable tech background (Google, FourSquare, Microsoft) and has developed her own apps but never learnt to code herself, as we discovered that hasn’t held her back.

Tell us about Apps Without Code.

Apps Without Code is a global education company teaching entrepreneurs how to build profitable apps with limited resources. Our programs are kind of like business school for your start-up idea. We have students in 14 countries. And graduates of our programs have built really awesome apps and licensed them to companies like Coca-Cola or entire school districts in Florida.

How did you get started?

As a business, Apps Without Code sort of happened by accident. I built my first app, Kollecto (Netflix for affordable art), as a non-technical entrepreneur, stringing together a bunch of existing technologies, without writing a single line of code. We had some really great success — we raised $ 300,000 in investment, made $ 150,000 in revenue, and got into the 500 Startups accelerator, in less than a year. But as time went on, it was amazing how many aspiring entrepreneurs came to me asking, “How’d you do that?” There were all kinds of “non-technical” people who wanted to learn how to build apps without code and launch startups on a budget. So a couple years in, I launched a second company called Apps Without Code. Today we run a startup school for entrepreneurs and also partner with nonprofits, universities, and corporations on entrepreneurship training programs.

What are the main benefits of creating an App without code?

There’s nothing wrong with coding, but it doesn’t make sense for everyone. It takes most people a long time (a few years) to get proficient enough in a coding language to build their full app idea. But the tech industry moves really fast. So 1-2 years is a long time to wait before you launch your business idea. Also, outsourcing the work to professional developers can be super expensive and if you’re not technical, it is super difficult to translate your creative vision to an affordable developer.

Building your own app without code means you can bring your product to market in a few weeks. It also means you can be really scrappy and efficient, and develop your app at a fraction of the cost. So it’s really an attractive option for bootstrapping entrepreneurs who aren’t backed by investors.

You’ve previously said concentrating on code can be a disadvantage to the consumer, is the customer journey your primary motivation?

The customer journey is definitely part of it. Building an app without code means you can respond to user feedback almost immediately, without the cost and time associated with traditional software development, which ultimately means a better product and experience for your customers.

You previously worked at Google, Foursquare and Microsoft – what inspired you to set out on your own?

I’d been kicking around my own app ideas while I was working at Microsoft, but I never thought of myself as an entrepreneur, and it was difficult to see how I would ever get something off the ground. Then one day a close friend and mentor said to me, “Tara, you are way too smart to not be taking more risks.” I cried when he told me that. And the next month I was on a plane to New York City to start a Bootcamp program for people wanting to start a side business. Kollecto was born from that process, and I left Microsoft shortly thereafter.

You are helping a host of entrepreneurs to create their own tech empires, any we should keep an eye out for?

There are so many amazing ideas that our Bootcamp students and alumni are working on. Many of our most successful students are actually “tech outsiders” — they don’t have much if any experience working in the tech world, but they have a ton of experience and expertise in other areas, like health care, or manufacturing, or education. One of our alumni saw a problem in the manufacturing industry and developed an app to streamline processes. A few months later, he was able to quit his job, and he’s already landed a contract with Coca-Cola for his app. This is life-changing stuff and it’s happening every single day.

What advice would you give to aspiring app developers who would be keen to follow your example?

I attribute a lot of our success to a willingness to fail. I’m always pushing my team to experiment. Most of the time, it doesn’t work out, but we learn from it and do better the next time. So I always tell other aspiring entrepreneurs and app builders, just go for it. Don’t wait. Just get something in front of people and see what happens.

How important has mobile technology been to spread your message?

It’s huge. Not only are we helping entrepreneurs develop mobile apps, but we’re also actively connecting with people that way. Instagram, for instance, is one of our most effective marketing channels. And in February we’re hosting an online conference that entrepreneurs can attend from literally anywhere.

Where can we find out more about Apps Without Code?

You can learn more about the Bootcamp program at We also run a free online workshop for people interested in building apps without code, and you can sign up for that at as well.

Follow @TaraReed_on Twitter

The post Industry Innovators: Meet Tara Reed, the woman changing the way we think about developing software appeared first on Sony Xperia Blog.

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Yes, that’s Netflix CEO Reed Hastings wearing an ugly Christmas sweater on his earnings call

Guess why?

Netflix added more than 5.5 million subscribers last quarter. It will spend as much as $ 8 billion on content next year.

But we’re not writing about that now. We’re writing about Reed Hastings. And his sweater.

Which is what the Netflix CEO wants us to write about. Since he and the rest of his executive team donned “Stranger Things”-themed light up sweaters at the end of their Q3 earnings call today.

Scroll ahead to the 40-minute mark if you want to see for yourself:

Why? Theoretically, because the second season of “Stranger Things” starts October 27, and he wanted to remind us about that. And the fact that we can buy “Stranger Things” light up sweaters from Target for $ 33 a pop. (Note: No affiliate links were used in the production of this blog post.)

But Netflix doesn’t need to remind anyone about “Stranger Things” — it’s a giant hit for the streaming service, and one it is already promoting extensively.

Let’s just chalk this one up to the fact that Hastings is partial to goofy sweaters — he wore one in a 2015 call, to promote “Bojack Horseman”, which did need a push — and that Netflix stock is at an all-time high.

And yes, it’s fun to write about goofy sweaters.

And no, we’re not buying one.

Recode – All

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings told Peter Thiel that his support of Trump made Facebook look bad

It always comes back to emails.

Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix, told venture capitalist Peter Thiel in an email during the 2016 presidential election that Thiel had displayed “catastrophically bad judgment” for his support of Donald Trump. The two Facebook board members’ previously unreported spat shows just how isolated Thiel’s politics have made him in Silicon Valley.

That’s via the New York Times, which reported Tuesday that Hastings, the chair of Facebook’s Board of Directors committee that evaluates other board members, told Thiel that he could suffer professionally for his politics.

“I see our board being about great judgment, particularly in unlikely disaster where we have to pick new leaders,” Hastings wrote in an email dated August 14 obtained by the Times. “I’m so mystified by your endorsement of Trump for our President, that for me it moves from ‘different judgment’ to ‘bad judgment.’ Some diversity in views is healthy, but catastrophically bad judgment (in my view) is not what anyone wants in a fellow board member.”

Thiel, a proudly contrarian investor, gave millions to super PACs that supported Trump and spoke on his behalf at the Republican National Convention just a few weeks before Hastings sent his note. The email seems to complicate what Thiel said in the final days before the election — that despite his advocacy for Trump, his “close working business relationships, I think all those are very well intact.”

Thiel said at the National Press Club in October that his “company,” at least, had not “in any meaningful way” experienced blowback from consumers or vendors.

Recode – All

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings: The full Code interview video

Watch Hastings talk about binge watching, live sports and Facebook.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has built a business on binge watchers — which may explain why the company isn’t having as much luck with movies as it is with television shows.

“Binge viewing is a very novel thing that we pioneered, and there’s no movie equivalent,” Hastings explained onstage last week at Recode’s annual Code Conference in Southern California.

Hastings also talked about why Netflix isn’t chasing after live sports rights, and the potential competition he may soon face from Facebook, which is pushing into its own original videos. (Hastings is on Facebook’s board.)

“There’s not a big conflict yet,” Hastings said. “We’re not bidding on the same shows. So not a big deal there.”

You can watch the entire interview here:

Recode – All