As a college student, I found that I was doing a lot of redundant calculations with regards to monetary transactions. I thought to myself of creating an app that can automate a lot of these calculations for you if you pass in certain parameters such as the billing amount, the base income, or the base rent, for example. This app focused on 5 calculations that many college students know very well.

  1. Calculating tips
  2. Calculating sales tax depending on the state you are in
  3. Calculating income
  4. Converting to other common currencies
  5. Calculating rent

What it does

My app performs these 5 calculations and displays it in a clear format to the user so they don't have to spend too much time on manipulating algebra. Text fields are color coded to denote which can be selected and which are intended to show calculated results to the user. For all of the features except calculating rent, white text fields can receive user input. For calculating rent, red text fields indicate costs to the user, the green text field for subletters is a gain to the user, and a parking space is denoted in orange because it can be subletted (a gain to the user) or used (a cost to the user). For all the calculations, grey text fields cannot be selected and show the calculated results.

How I built it

I used Swift 3 with purely built-in Xcode features. The app was relatively simple in concept but I got a lot of practice working with a few things I haven't before such as UIProgressBars, UISwitches, and in particular, UIPickerViews.

Challenges I ran into

Initially, I had trouble dynamically creating the UIPickerView, but I figured it out. I also had trouble creating two UIPickerViews in one ViewController and I could not fix this problem yet, unfortunately.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

Overall, I'm proud of how organized the app is in terms of the interface. The coding aspect of it was not super complicated, but the app used all the barebones features of Xcode without external libraries and it turned out fairly clean in my opinion.

What I learned

I learned how to work with UIPickerViews and got a lot better at it. Additionally, I was able to organize a clean user interface for my View Controllers that I was not able to before.

What's next for Bill-Util

I am planning on releasing this to the App Store and hopefully adding a few more calculations to optimize it a bit for everyone!

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