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Camino Ninja (RIP) - is there a way to keep it going?

BobY333

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino San Salvador/Primitivo May 2022 (planning!)
Hi all. I'm aware that Andy, the force behind the app, passed away a few months ago. I never had the chance to meet him or his famed beard, but I did communicate with him with some suggested tweaks to the app along my last Caminos in May. He was incredibly responsive, and seemed truly happy to hear from me.

I relied on his app extensively. The offline GPS maps were invaluable, including leading me out of the woods below the Puerto de Pajares where one of Ender's signposts had fallen over and I had wandered astray.

I wonder if there is any way that I, or we as a group, could keep this app going? I have no app development experience, but I would certainly be game to learn and give back to this amazing community. I'm also quite certain that I'm being naive in thinking about how much/little work keeping it up would involve.

This is an idea in its infancy, but I figured I'd reach out and see if anyone has thoughts on this or would be willing to help if I got this started?

Many thanks,
Bob
 
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klimmo

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Mozarabe: nov ‘19
Português coastal: oct-nov ‘21
Hi all. I'm aware that Andy, the force behind the app, passed away a few months ago. I never had the chance to meet him or his famed beard, but I did communicate with him with some suggested tweaks to the app along my last Caminos in May. He was incredibly responsive, and seemed truly happy to hear from me.

I relied on his app extensively. The offline GPS maps were invaluable, including leading me out of the woods below the Puerto de Pajares where one of Ender's signposts had fallen over and I had wandered astray.

I wonder if there is any way that I, or we as a group, could keep this app going? I have no app development experience, but I would certainly be game to learn and give back to this amazing community. I'm also quite certain that I'm being naive in thinking about how much/little work keeping it up would involve.

This is an idea in its infancy, but I figured I'd reach out and see if anyone has thoughts on this or would be willing to help if I got this started?

Many thanks,
Bob
I'm with you Bob, I loved the app on the CP and will probably be using it for the VDLP this october. Great idea to keep it going.
 

wisepilgrim

Camino App Maker
Time of past OR future Camino
Many
@BobY333
I have been making camino apps for over a decade now and can probably add a few answers to your specific questions if you have them. Camino Ninja certainly made his mark on this community and I for one would not assume that the app should be revived out of respect for Andy… I simply do not know what his wishes would have been.

But I can say that all of the functions you mention are available in other apps, and that if there is enough community interest in a slim version of the apps that I currently publish I would be happy to devote time to making one available for free.

The Ninja app that I have seen functions more of a directory than a guide, as I do not think it contained information or practical advice about places along the way or warnings about what to watch out for on the camino… please correct me if I am wrong. If this is what the community is looking for and needs I am following this thread to know more and to help out where and however I can.

Michael
 
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klimmo

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Mozarabe: nov ‘19
Português coastal: oct-nov ‘21
@BobY333
I have been making camino apps for over a decade now and can probably add a few answers to your specific questions if you have them. Camino Ninja certainly made his mark on this community and I for one would not assume that the app should be revived out of respect for Andy… I simply do not know what his wishes would have been.

But I can say that all of the functions you mention are available in other apps, and that if there is enough community interest in a slim version of the apps that I currently publish I would be happy to devote time to making one available for free.

The Ninja app that I have seen functions more of a directory than a guide, as I do not think it contained information or practical advice about places along the way or warnings about what to watch out for on the camino… please correct me if I am wrong. If this is what the community is looking for and needs I am following this thread to know more and to help out where and however I can.

Michael
Hi Michael,

I love the simplicity of it. Along with the map and albergues etc along the line. and what was great about it was that you could use it offline. I used it together with maps.me and it was all i ever needed.

Everbody is different, and has different needs, and this one suited me well.

Either keep his app alive (if that is as he wished) or take his legacy forward as inspiration for another, both seem a worthy endeavor.

Mon
 

WGroleau

Wandering Weirdo
Time of past OR future Camino
2015 & 2016 (partial)
If he made the source code available and open source, then someone else can legally modify it and resubmit it to the app store(s) as a new entry. Or if he entrusted the source code to someone else to maintain, they could do so. Otherwise, someone would have to start from scratch to imitate it.
 

USMC-Pilgrim

I learned, the hard way!
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (SJPDP to Santiago) May-Jun 2022
Hi all. I'm aware that Andy, the force behind the app, passed away a few months ago. I never had the chance to meet him or his famed beard, but I did communicate with him with some suggested tweaks to the app along my last Caminos in May. He was incredibly responsive, and seemed truly happy to hear from me.

I relied on his app extensively. The offline GPS maps were invaluable, including leading me out of the woods below the Puerto de Pajares where one of Ender's signposts had fallen over and I had wandered astray.

I wonder if there is any way that I, or we as a group, could keep this app going? I have no app development experience, but I would certainly be game to learn and give back to this amazing community. I'm also quite certain that I'm being naive in thinking about how much/little work keeping it up would involve.

This is an idea in its infancy, but I figured I'd reach out and see if anyone has thoughts on this or would be willing to help if I got this started?

Many thanks,
Bob
There are many apps out there to assist pilgrims. I always went with the Ninja. Would love to know if his family would have plans to have it continue as memoriam to his wonderful service to the community.
 
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Katherine Radeka

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Francés (2022, 2023)
We were so sad to learn of Andy's passing. After using his app every day, he almost felt like an acquaintance, if not a friend.

I used Buen Camino and Camino Ninja, for different things. For Buen Camino, I especially liked the stage-planning feature. It was a bit buggy in the sense that it kept adding phantom stages but I could just delete those. I also found the most helpful lists of albergues and churches with links to mass times.

I used Camino Ninja for route-finding, and I especially liked the feature that opened up the entire Camino Francés first, and then zoomed in on your location. Cool to see my blue dot traveling across Spain that way. I also liked that it showed what towns you'd be passing through, and what services were in each town. But it was the accurate route-finding that was most helpful, and the reason why I'd recommend it to other pilgrims.

If I knew Wise Pilgrim had that feature, I would download it as a replacement. I have to admit that I didn't download Wise Pilgrim because I didn't like the printed guidebook with QR codes so I left it at home (a personal preference to be sure) but figured that if I didn't like the guidebook design, I'd probably like the app even less (honest feedback based on experience with other things like it).
 

henrythedog

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
X
We were so sad to learn of Andy's passing. After using his app every day, he almost felt like an acquaintance, if not a friend.

I used Buen Camino and Camino Ninja, for different things. For Buen Camino, I especially liked the stage-planning feature. It was a bit buggy in the sense that it kept adding phantom stages but I could just delete those. I also found the most helpful lists of albergues and churches with links to mass times.

I used Camino Ninja for route-finding, and I especially liked the feature that opened up the entire Camino Francés first, and then zoomed in on your location. Cool to see my blue dot traveling across Spain that way. I also liked that it showed what towns you'd be passing through, and what services were in each town. But it was the accurate route-finding that was most helpful, and the reason why I'd recommend it to other pilgrims.

If I knew Wise Pilgrim had that feature, I would download it as a replacement. I have to admit that I didn't download Wise Pilgrim because I didn't like the printed guidebook with QR codes so I left it at home (a personal preference to be sure) but figured that if I didn't like the guidebook design, I'd probably like the app even less (honest feedback based on experience with other things like it).
I’d really suggest trying one of the Wise Pilgrim apps. Like you I can’t get used to the printed guides; but the app is much better.
 

klimmo

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Mozarabe: nov ‘19
Português coastal: oct-nov ‘21
@BobY333
I have been making camino apps for over a decade now and can probably add a few answers to your specific questions if you have them. Camino Ninja certainly made his mark on this community and I for one would not assume that the app should be revived out of respect for Andy… I simply do not know what his wishes would have been.

But I can say that all of the functions you mention are available in other apps, and that if there is enough community interest in a slim version of the apps that I currently publish I would be happy to devote time to making one available for free.

The Ninja app that I have seen functions more of a directory than a guide, as I do not think it contained information or practical advice about places along the way or warnings about what to watch out for on the camino… please correct me if I am wrong. If this is what the community is looking for and needs I am following this thread to know more and to help out where and however I can.

Michael
Hi Michael,

I gave it a go, compared your VdlP app to CaminoNinja (CN). I'm not convinced I will use WP (wisepilgrim), even though I have now paid it. CN is much easier to use, and gets me quicker to the info I seek. Whereas you offer loads more info, but mostly stuff I don't necesarilly need.

The way I plan from day to day is I start with thinking how much distance I would like to cover the next day, and then I look where that would get me.

In CN, the start place becomes your 0 and will then scroll down to about the ideal distance and it will give me the villages and the amenities there. By clicking on a village it gives me links to albergues and other places, I make a choice, put the chosen location in maps.me (where i have the kml file), and I take it from there.

I tried to do something similar in WP, I have to already know which region I'm in and will be in for the next day. I have to scroll through heaps and heaps of info that I don't need at this stage. If all that info would be in a dropdown menu, that would already be better in my opinion. Also, if I want to see if a location offers an albergue or hotel, i have to again scroll a lot.
The map took forever to download and then wouldn't unpack.

Lastly, CN is free, and I had to pay 3 chf for yours.

I hope this makes sense to you.

At the moment CN is still active, so I'll probably be mostly using that.
Even though I don't like WP from a practical standpoint, I appreciate all the details and design features. It's beautifully done. For background info I may come back to it.

Cheers,
Mon
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
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klimmo

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Mozarabe: nov ‘19
Português coastal: oct-nov ‘21
@klimmo You should look at the Buen Camino app. The stage planner feature makes it easy to plan daily distances.
Thank you! Had a quick look and that looks really good, that would suit my stage planning much better.
 
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