Controls gets auto option at last

My Controls app now has the option to switch between manual and automatic transmission in the Pedals and Gears sections.

In the Pedals section, switching to automatic simply hides the clutch pedal.

In the Gears section, as you'd expect, the interactive manual gearbox is replaced with an automatic version.

The app will remember your last selection, so if you always teach automatic it will still be selected next time you launch the app.

Not got the app yet? Get it here:

Learn To Drive: Controls - Neil Beaver

Smooth new images for Controls

Version 2.0 of Controls has just gone live as a free update for you lucky people. This update implements the new features described in the previous post, as well as some fantastic improvements to the images, a couple of bug fixes, and a few extra dashboard lights in the Signals section.

If you haven't already got this app, you can check it out on the App Store with the button below. With this update it's even more feature-packed than ever, including the interactive clutch demonstrator and push-pull steering extravaganza!

Learn To Drive: Controls - Neil Beaver

Clutch demonstrator is here!


The Controls app has just been updated with a new section which contains a basic clutch demonstrator. What are you waiting for? Go get it!

Learn To Drive: Controls - Neil Beaver

The Bird Stories

If you have an iPad and a child under 5, you might want to have a look at this.


The Bird Stories is an interactive storybook written and illustrated by the excellent Aimee Lockwood. Aimee is responsible for creating Otis the octopus (of Textopus fame) and also for the illustrations in Learn To Drive: Controls. You can read more about The Bird Stories on Aimee's blog.

Hit the button below to get it now:

The Bird Stories - FamLoop

Controls update and another bug

An update to the Controls app is now live on the App Store. This update addresses an issue with the handbrake that was introduced with the iOS 6 operating system. The update also improves the performance of turn signals and hazards lights when used together in the signals section.

Unfortunately, a new (iOS 6 only) bug has just come to light. This bug will only show itself if you exit the app and then relaunch it while it's still in your iPad's memory. In this case, you will not be able to swipe through the D.S.S.S.M routine. Force quitting and relaunching the app fixes the problem temporarily.

A further update with a fix for this bug has been submitted to Apple and should go live within the next few days.

iOS 6 latest

A quick update on what's been happening with iOS app updates and bug fixes:

Road Pad & Road Pad Mini
Both these apps were affected by Apple's move away from Google Maps. I've made available temporary updates for users of iOS 6. These updates replace Apple's maps with Google Maps.

I've also completed work on further updates to both of these apps, which have been submitted to Apple for approval but are not yet live on the App Store. These latest updates support iOS 5 & 6. They allow the user to choose between using Apple's maps or Google Maps. Both updates also include other usability enhancements. They should be available to download in the next few days.

iOS 6 caused an issue in the Controls app which prevented the handbrake demonstrator from working. An updated version of the app which fixes this bug has been submitted to Apple and should be available to download in the next few days.

Records & Give Way
Both these apps have been updated to fix bugs caused by iOS 6. Both updates are available to download from the App Store now.

UPDATE: Controls update has gone live, but another bug has surfaced! See here for details. Road Pad 1.4 has also gone live. See here for details.

FURTHER UPDATE: Road Pad Mini 1.2 is now live as well. See here for details.

Controls update

I've been so busy lately I didn't even get around to writing blog posts for my latest app releases. Controls came out a couple of weeks ago. It's the latest in the Learn To Drive series of apps for instructors and learners. Instructors will find this particularly useful as a teaching aid for the Controls lesson.

I've tried to make this app more than just a series of images by adding interactive elements wherever possible. It's not easy to imitate the way car controls work - the way the indicators click on and off, the pedals spring back up when released and hands slide around the wheel when using the push/pull steering method.

The end result is, I think, the most useful resource currently available to a driving instructor for teaching the controls lesson.

Controls just got even better with the new update which adds a whole new section on vision and blindspots, as well as some enhancements to the steering section of the app. You can now add a clock face to the wheel to help in explaining where the hands should be and how they should move. You can also demonstrate how the wheels of the car turn in response to the turning of the steering wheel. This could be especially useful outside of the controls lesson, such as when teaching parallel park.

The other major enhancement in this update is the addition of more comprehensive briefings for each section. These briefings will be especially useful for learners using the app to brush up on their controls knowledge in between lessons. Just tap on the wee info buttons for a description of each control and how it should be used.