And Then There Was Code
It all started back in September of 2009, where we were contracted to develop some mobile applications for a client in Europe. However, as cool as these applications were to build, testing and debugging them (at least with the available tools) was anything but.
Weeks passed, headaches grew, time was lost and finally it had to be said, “There has just got to be a better way to do this!” Currently developers must use multiple stand-alone mobile environment emulators to test and deploy their cross-platform applications; followed by a tedious testing cycle on actual mobile devices which often results in elusive and hard to diagnose bugs. But why!?!? That led to the idea of building our own mobile environment implementations on top of browser-based testing and debugging tools, which would allow us to test our own mobile applications and help other developers out there with the same issues. Thus, out of intrinsic necessity (and because Brent had a final university project), Ripple was born… originally named the mobilator… but that conjured too many images of robotic soldiers and the apocalypse.
The Next Step
Then one causal night, sitting around the dining room table, eating takeout (as usual) we were inspired by the idea of developing Ripple full time. Not only would it be a challenge but also provide a valuable tool for cross platform mobile developers. Keeping that in mind we took to a brisk pace and immediately began to immerse ourselves in the local start-up and mobile communities. As time carried on, our passion for mobile space and our desire to help make development and testing easier continued to grow.
The next thing we needed was a name! Fatefully, with the help of our kids (and of course, that cool commercial) we settled on the name tinyHippos Inc. From then on we continued to spend most of our time developing Ripple while bootstrapping our startup habit by taking on contracts with various local and international companies.
Hard Work Pays Off
Months later after we finally finished prototyping, building, tearing apart and rebuilding Ripple we were ready for the big world and released an early Alpha preview. Along that timeline we moved up in the world and out of Brent’s basement and are now sharing our work space in a much larger office with our cousin company CuteGecko. During that time we have had the pleasure of demonstrating our product at various local events such as The Waterloo Region Web Design & Technology Group, Guelph Demo Camp, Start-up Camp Waterloo, and Dev House Waterloo hosted by PostRank; As well as engaging in local community incubators such as Communitech. All their feedback and support has been (and and continues to be) invaluable.
The Beta Launch:
By the end of April 2009 we successfully (and finally) launched Ripple into full Beta while kicking it off with our launch party.
Giant Baby Steps
By the end of Nov 2010, currently in our new shiny office at the tannery. we made a significant release of Ripple (0.4.0) and were proud to finally provide support for web frameworks like Sencha and JQuery Mobile, whilst continuing our goal to provide cross platform, mobile application development and testing in the browser.
Where Are We Now:
Currently we are working hard developing Ripple’s features and fixing bugs, engaging in varying communities, and constantly increasing our knowledge and skills and most importantly extending our passion to other contributors and developers in the mobile ecosystem.