Credit Card Tart – End of life notice

July 25th, 2013 by Ian:

As of Saturday, July 20th, 2013 our iPhone app for rate tarting, Credit Card Tart has been removed from the App Store.  We have decided not to develop this application any further.  

We would like to thank all of you who have purchased the application over the years since its release in 2009.  Bone Desert has decided to concentrate its efforts on other subject matter (still iOS and OSX based and very much in the category Productivity Tools for Thinking People).  We have been working on a new application for over a year now and soon we will be ready to tell you all about it, but not just yet.

Although Credit Card Tart has been removed from view in the App Store, it is still available for download for those of you who have already purchased it.  So if you have an accident with your iOS device – such as deleting the application – launch the App Store application on your device, view Updates and choose Purchased.  You will be able to find and download Credit Card Tart from the list of purchases displayed.  

Post Antenna-gate and the free Apple Bumper.

August 18th, 2010 by Ian:

Like most sensible people, as soon as Apple announced availability of the awesome iPhone 4 I order myself one.  Not merely because, as a developer, I was interested in producing applications and therefore required a testing device.  I was just blown away by its feature set and could see real value.  I’m a father of a young family (5 and 7 at the time of writing this) and an avid live music fan.  Although Family Dodd owns a perfectly acceptable Camcorder, we never seem to have it handy when we want to capture a moment with the kids (or record a snippet of my favourite bands at a gig *wink wink*).

And then the twittersphere became alive with rumours of left-handed black magic.  Individuals were forcing awesome device to somehow lose signal or drop calls.  I didnt see what the fuss was all about, at first.  Living in North Essex UK at the time, I just couldnt get the magic to occur.  Was I not from the correct satanic sect I wondered ?  Seriously, in truth, I never lost a call between the time I received my device and that kind Mr Jobs informed me I needed to order a free case to resolve the “so-called” issues.  I was more concerned (and still am) with issues I’m having with the proximity sensor during calls.  It would appear the little devil cannot seem to recognise I’m still on a lengthy call if I’m a tiny bit covered in perspiration, forcing the screen to be once again touch sensitive.

And then I moved to rural Northumberland in the North East of England …

I think its fair to say that one could describe my residence as being ‘Out in the sticks’.  I’m almost 3km away from my nearest ADSL exchange, although we pay for an 8Mb/s DSL line, we achieve a mere 1.4Mb/s in practise.  I cant see the nearest mobile tower (and dont even know which direct to look for it – its so far away).  Boy! Was it easy to contribute to antenna-gate now !  I could drop a call at the blink of an eye (so long as I held the phone left-handed).

And then the fateful day came and my inbox received the good news …

Delivery of my Apple sponsored Bumper would be the very next day.  I installed said Bumper the moment after the package hit my floor.  I have been using the Bumper now for several days and never drop a call.  I should also mention that my iPhone is my primary business communication tool (next to email of course), so a drop-free device is very important to me.  Well done Apple for the fix, but I do wonder come September, when the free bumper offer ends, that a hardware revision might become available for new iPhone4 purchases …

I have to mention a few negative points before I call this post to an end.  The Bumper negates the use of the iPhone4 dock.  This is non-sense to me.  Why design either without consideration for the other ?  Dont reply to me and suggest I merely remove the Bumper before I insert the device in the dock.  This is as crazy as asking someone “have I tried switching it off and back on again?” in a support call.  My main issue with the bumper is much more important – particularly if you are male (I suspect) and like me prefer not to use a wallet to hold credit cards when going out.  I keep my iPhone sans Bumper in the same trouser pocket as my credit cards when out shopping/dining/drinking etc.

The bumper has the uncanny knack of trapping a credit card firm against the face of the iPhone when extricating  the device to answer calls, or use an app.  It hasnt happened yet to me (because I’ve stayed sober I imagine), but I can see, the risk of losing a valuable credit card increasing due to this unwanted feature of the bumper/phone as alcohol consumption or distraction increases …

So be warned fellow Bumper users.

NSConference Mini 2010 Notes

June 9th, 2010 by Ian:

Are you going to NSConference Mini 2010 in Birmingham, UK ?

Are you taking just an iPad for note taking and would like a pretty Pages template ?







The Pages document contains all of the session notes from Scotty’s NSConference web site plus additional note taking pages (bulleted).  You can download your own copy (zip) here.


The Weekly Review as a Things Project

January 19th, 2010 by Ian:

If you are a fan of Getting Things Done (GTD) workflow like myself you are constantly looking for tips and tricks to improve your work ethic.

After reading Fraser Spiers excellent blog posting regarding the set-up of a weekly review project that mimics the standard review steps from the Getting Things Done book, I wondered if it would be possible to do something similar in (Fraser uses OmniFocus in his post).

Things Weekly Review.png

It is quite simple to setup a project in Things to do this. The important steps to undertake are: -

  1. Create a project and add tasks, use the notes field in both the project definition and task definition to insert sufficient narrative to explain the process you are trying to capture and achieve.
  2. Use tags in the task to identify which group the tasks relate to (Get Clear, Get Current & Get Creative).
  3. Via drag and drop order the tasks into the initial correct running order.
  4. After creating the project, drag the project name from the ACTIVE PROJECTS sidebar over the Scheduled outline item. Click on the next Monday in the future on the calendar displayed (or another day if you wish to perform reviews other than on Mondays).
  5. Click on the Scheduled item in the sidebar to display all scheduled items. Click on Monday next to the project you have just created. A context menu will appear, choose the Make Repeating Menu option.
  6. Enter the appropriate options in the Repeat panel that appears, such as, set the project to repeat weekly, on which date the event should appear in your projects list, how long the schedule should last (normally indefinitely), etc.

I haven’t determined whether you can template this (as Fraser does on his blog) using but hopefully my instructions are enough for you to set this up for yourself.

End of Summer Sale

August 27th, 2009 by Ian:

Since this is the end of Summer, here at Bone Desert HQ, we thought we’d give you a chance to capitalise on a little sale fun for the UK Public Holiday Weekend.

All weekend (starting from Friday) until Monday evening Credit Card Tart will be selling at a reduced rate of 0.99 US Dollars (or local currency equivalence).

Happy Holiday Weekend from all of us at Bone Desert Software.


Credit Card Tart Info
App Store link

Credit Card Tart – Press Release

August 18th, 2009 by Ian:

Credit Card Tart saves you money at the expense of interest rate payments

LONDON, UK – 18 August 2009 – Bone Desert Software today announced the general availability and world wide release of Credit Card Tart Version 1.0 via the iPhone App Store.

Credit Card Tart is an intuitive tracking application for Rate Tarts (What is Rate Tarting – see below) that addresses specific Rate Tarting issues for both novice and expert alike. Use Credit Card Tart to reduce the risk of incurring costly credit card interest rate payments. This handy application will pay for itself the first time you save money by NOT missing an introductory interest rate expiration date.

What is Rate Tarting and what are the risks
Rate Tarting is a phrase that identifies those that save money, earn money or rapidly reduce their credit exposure by utilising low or 0% interest rate credit cards. Typically a Rate Tart moves debt from card to card keeping it at a low or 0% rate, maximising the benefit of ‘concatenated’ offer terms. An offer usually has a fixed duration such as 3, 6, or 12 months etc.

Rate Tarting is fraught with risk for the unaware: -

  • Credit Card companies are in business to make profit. Whilst at first glance, low introductory offers appear to be unprofitable for the Credit Card companies, they are in fact very profitable as they rely on basic human nature to make money – the traits of laziness and forgetfulness work very well for them.
  • Forgetting to switch to a new Credit Card when an offer expires is costly to the cardholder. An interest rate (usually higher than average) is then applied against the outstanding debt, reducing the effective savings you have made whilst under the offer and prolonging the life of the debt.
  • Forgetting to cancel old cards can also be costly as it can affect future credit scores when applying for new cards. Vigilance and diligence are required when signing up for a credit card that includes an introductory interest rate offer, if you are to minimise your credit exposure and maximise the benefit of such an offer.
  • An effective Rate Tarter may be managing many different credit cards at any one time with differing deal terms and expiration dates. Juggling the date to switch to another card can be complex when balanced against maximising savings based on the offer.
  • The goal of a successful Rate Tarter is to keep debt constantly at 0%.

Credit Card Tart minimises risk with the following features:

  • Highlights via a colour-coded traffic light system when you are close to offer expiration. Colour coding is structured in terms of the timescale typically required to acquire new cards and transfer balances. Highlights the number of days until an interest rate offer will expire.
  • Cards ‘at risk’ move up the display list in order of priority and are given additional visual highlighting making it easy for you react, establish and switch to another card before interest is charged.
  • Conversely, ‘lower risk’ credit cards are emphasised less and are listed further down the card display list.
  • No need to pop up your favourite calendar tool to calculate the expiration date of the offer, simply enter the offer period in months and Credit Card Tart will perform the calculation for you.
  • Supports all popular credit card types, such as, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and ‘Others’.
  • Offer periods can be chosen between 1 – 24 months.

Pricing & Availability
Credit Card Tart requires iPhone OS Version 3.0 or higher and operates on either Apple® iPhone or iPod Touch devices. It is immediately available in the iPhone App Store world wide at a price of 2.99 US Dollars, 1.79 British Pounds Sterling (or local currency equivalent).

About Bone Desert
Bone Desert Software are an independent Mac and iPhone software company located in UK specialising in products for OS X and iPhone platforms, specifically targeting the consumer market. With over 50 years of software engineering and UI design experience, Bone Desert also provides UI Graphical Design and Bespoke Development Services to its clients.

Press Contacts:
Bone Desert Software
E: –

Improving my WebDev arsenal

July 17th, 2009 by Ian:

I’m impressed … I’m very impressed. I’ve been meaning to bolster my development tools in areas of weakness for some time.

One such weakness was blogging. Until very recently I hadn’t even touched blogging software. But since the creation of the company website I’ve been forced to get creative, install Wordpress, stylise a theme in true Bone Desert colours and look for a tool to assist in posting hot stuff from the Desert. And the funny thing is ? I love it … The whole experience has been a blast and I cant wait to get my teeth stuck into blogging for real.

So what tools do I have in my arsenal ? For developing XHTML, CSS and PHP, for the website I’m a huge fan of Panic’s Coda. For designing bitmap graphics I use bonhemiancoding’s DrawIt (Pieter Omvlee). A more usable vector-bitmap application for mere mortals like myself than Photoshop.

So after doing my research into Mac based blogging tools I have settled on MarsEdit by Red Sweater (Daniel Jalkut). From the moment I opened it after the initial download from Red Sweater’s web site, the user experience has been awesome. Its simple to use but powerful with it. My cup brimeth over with positivity.


Thanks to Daniel Jalkut for the pointers on setting up the BD preview template.

Welcome to the Bone Blog

July 10th, 2009 by Ian:

Hi, I’d like to welcome you all to our new company blog – Bone Blog.

I intend to regularly keep the blog informed of what’s going on in the Desert.  It will be our primary vehicle of communicating and documenting the trials and tribulations that occur whilst developing and bringing software products to market.  We hope that you will come along for the ride too – I know it will be fun and challenging and hopefully interesting to budding startups and indie old-timers alike.

We’ll keep you informed of software updates, announcements of our Early Adoption (alpha users) programme as well as discussing any subject that takes our fancy.  Basically, anything remotely connected with life in the Desert.

We’d love you to subscribe to our feed and regularly contribute with comments and thoughts (both positive and negative).