Review: Sensor Tower for app research and tracking

If you are interested in building an app or have built an app and want to track how it is doing for search, etc. Sensor Tower is a good tool.

Currently I’m tracking my game BouncyKat. The good news is I learned a lot about search, especially from their daily lessons (sign up here to get the email). The bad news is my search terms stunk.

So, after making a few key changes to my game to iTunes so that I could change my keywords and description. I’m on a trial, so if I get the ability to track more keywords in the future I’ll amend this review, so I can only track and do limited research. But the research that is available is rich and actionable.

For example, I can see the difficulty to rank, by device and where I rank for those terms. Right now I stink but I’m working on it. Not only am I working on it but the screenshot below aren’t even good search terms to track. I’ll update those once iTunes approves my update.

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 12.46.29 PM

Sensor Tower also allows for keyword research, suggestions and spy on keywords from other apps. The spy tool is great because you might find that there is an app that doesn’t have a ton of reviews and has been out for a while but ranks in the top 10. Why? I ask that all the time and Sensor Tower helps me diagnose with an easy to use interface.

Ignore my horrible ranking for now because Sensor Tower has allowed me to get smarter about keywords (if you need to update your keywords you can only do it once you update your app in iTunes otherwise they are locked).

Below you can see an example of keyword research dashboard:
Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 12.50.30 PM

Below are the features you get when you use Sensor Tower:
Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 12.52.26 PM

The one issue that I’ve run into, frankly, is the cost. I’m trying to move game app development beyond a hobby so $79 a month is a steep price to pay for tracking a hobby. If I were a professional or agency and my apps were already making money this would be a bargain. Below is the breakdown in costs.

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 12.56.13 PM

Solved: Retrieve public RSA key on Mac for Git

Ever created a key and either didn’t save it or forgot where it was all together? Well, if you are on a Mac, you might have it in your Keychain. I thought mine was there, but quickly found out that my Keychain password was wrong. So, what to do?

You can retrieve your SSH key via Terminal on your Mac.

Open Terminal and add the following code:

cat ~/.ssh/id_rsa.pub | pbcopy

Now, your SSH key is in your clipboard and you can paste it anywhere. I’d recommend creating a Git password in your Keychain and saving it there.

Solved: Error: could not find function “cast”

If you’ve been trying to cast in R and have run into the following error:

Error: could not find function "cast"

Then here is the solution. You must install either reshape or reshape2. I actually installed both. Here are the steps in R:

> install.packages("reshape", type="source")
> install.packages("reshape2", type="source")
> library(reshape)
> library(reshape2)

Cast should now work. Good luck!

Solved: SSL: certificate verification failed with R and twitteR

Have you been trying to use R and hook it up with something like twitteR and got an SSL error message?

Me too. But I found the problem. Here was my original code:

> cred$handshake(cainfo="cacert.pem") 

But I kept getting the following error:

Error in function (type, msg, asError = TRUE)  : 
  SSL: certificate verification failed (result: 5)

The fix was simple. Change this code:

> cred$handshake(cainfo="cacert.pem") 

To the following code (make sure you are directing the .pem location correctly. Mine is at the root of my Mac yours could be in /User/username/Documents/cacert.pem for example):

> cred$handshake(cainfo=system.file("CurlSSL", "cacert.pem", package = "RCurl"))

Then your browser window will pop open and ask for your Twitter OAuth PIN. Put that in and you are all set. Don’t forget to save your work and test for TRUE with registerTwitterOAuth line:

> save(cred, file="twitter authentication.Rdata")
> registerTwitterOAuth(cred)

Fix: sudo: port: command not found

I’m trying to setup Python 2.7 and SciPy and hit a major roadblock. I kept getting
sudo: port: command not found

On Mac OSX, I’m on Yosemite, if you’ve installed MacPorts with the package installer and have the same issues that I encountered I’ve got the fix. Part of the problem is that MacPorts binaries are installed in /opt/local/bin, so you just need to add this path to your PATH environment variable. Example with your user, add to your $HOME/.profile:

Add the following in terminal —

Step one:

export PATH=$PATH:/opt/local/bin

Step two:

$ source .profile

Step three:

sudo port -v selfupdate

Learn Project Management with Basecamp – Online

Become a Project Management Ninja. You can go from managing projects in your email to managing them in Basecamp-used by companies like NIKE, FOX, ADIDAS, TWITTER and more to manage their projects.

You can take this course on Learn Project Management with Basecamp Udemy today!

You will be SURPRISED how easy it is to manage your project from beginning to end and deliver it on-time and successfully.

I will guide you through utilizing Basecamp online project management software to get better organized and deliver projects with success that will impress everyone involved! Impress your boss, team and/or clients!

This course is 100% video based tutorial so you that you can see in real time how to add people, create a project and project manage from scratch. Included is a “5 Steps for Successful Project Management” PDF so that you can keep that with you as a way to kickoff every project.

You’ve always wanted to learn how to successfully manage a project. Now you can. Start becoming a successful Project Manager TODAY!

Some of the things you’ll be learning here are:

1. 5 Steps to Successful Project Management:
2. Adding People to Basecamp
3. Creating Projects in Basecamp
4. Managing your Project Calendar

ENROLL today and become a Project Managing Ninja tomorrow. My goal is to help everyone involved so feel free to leave my questions. My goal is for those who enroll to give feedback, ask questions and get advice on becoming an expert PM!

Sign up today — this course will only be $19 for a limited time. I will be tripling the price by October 1.

data science

What is a Data Scientist

Just like a scientist using the scientific method, a data scientist looks closely and observes data – they generate questions and are naturally curious about the data being observed. They also use various mathematical and statistical algorithms to better understand the data and better answer the questions being asked.

Data science is an emerging field of study that creatively solves problems and extracts knowledge from data using mathematics, statistics, and computer science knowledge and skills. A data scientist has the ability to take data, understand it, process it, extract value from it, visualize it, and communicate what it means. As you can see from this description, many skills are needed for a data scientist, not just database and computer science skills.

ghost blogging platform

Curious about Ghost Blogging Platform?

What is Ghost?

ghost blogging platformAccording to their website: “Ghost is an Open Source application which allows you to write and publish your own blog, giving you the tools to make it easy and even fun to do. It’s simple, elegant, and designed so that you can spend less time making your blog work and more time blogging.”

That’s a very accurate description. Ghost, once up and running, is a very streamlined blogging platform. It’s not a robust content management system nor was it intended to be.

I was curious enough to give it a shot after reading about its Kickstarter success. It took about an hour to setup lovepoemscycle.com. It’s not for the faint at heart (although Ghost has setup its own network and this process should be easier).

Setting up a hosting account on Digital Ocean was step-one.

Thankfully they had a hosting setup with Ghost mostly ready, but you will still need to do a bunch of command line work to get the site setup. If you are afraid of command line then you might want to stick with some simpler blogging platforms like Tumblr.

The next step in the process that might scare users even further, especially those who are spoiled by WordPress’ easy theme upload and setup, is using Git. Perhaps there is a better way to get a theme to Git, but not on Digital Ocean. The only way I could figure out how to get my theme to Ghost was to setup a Git repository and SSH the theme to the server. All changes are either done through command line or Git.

It was fun for someone like me who likes to mess around with new technology, but the setup was a chore. WordPress would have been setup in ten minutes. However, if you really want a streamlined blogging platform that is fast without all the added features then Ghost is a good choice.

It will be fun to watch how Ghost evolves–especially with the release of their new hosted platform that promises setup in minutes.

Musings :)