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13 Oct



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Hiring – Part Time Bookkeeper

October 13, 2015 | By | No Comments

We are looking for a part time bookkeeper to join our team. You will be helping us with some of our day to day accounting tasks.

Responsibilities May Include:
– Accounts Receivable – create invoices, communicate with customers regarding payments, review receivables for aging accounts.
– Accounts Payable – post invoices, prepare payments.
– Bank reconciliations.
– Payroll – prepare and submit bi-weekly payroll.
– Other general accounting tasks as needed.

Desired Qualifications:
– Minimum 3 years previous experience in a bookkeeper position.
– Post secondary diploma / degree in accounting would be preferred.
– Proficient with Quickbooks.
– Prior experience with Quickbooks Online an asset.
– Exemplary communication skills.
– Good attitude.
– Good aptitude.
– Confident, self starter who can work independently.

The position is part time but can eventually grow into a full time position. This position could be done from your home although visits to our office in Richmond would be required in some cases.

Please send your resume and cover letter in PDF format to with REF 14O-FB15-W

Accounting firms need not apply.

Star Trek Lied To Me: The Wearables Edition

October 9, 2015 | By | No Comments

Ever since I watched Star Trek: The Next Generation as a kid, I expected flying cars and teleportation to be real when I grew up.  Some of the wearables and gadgets used on Star Trek have vaguely shaped the technology we use today, but not to the extent my 9 year old heart hoped for.  Wearables have long been promised as the breakthrough technology that will really change how humanity interacts, but I think some major changes are needed before that happens.  Since I don’t know much about technology, but I do know a lot about complaining, I have outlined my thoughts on how wearables should improve.  Apple and Google R&D, please form an orderly queue.  



If You Like It Then You Shoulda Put a Ring On It

Today’s wearable tech can be rather intrusive and not have enough integration into your daily life. Google Glass makes you look crazy so for wearable tech to become more mainstream, it needs to get smaller.  I want wearable tech that I don’t even know is there like an outfit I can control with my iPhone or a ring that will notify me with important updates so I don’t need to have my phone out.  The main purpose for wearable tech is to be seamless and fit in your life.

See? Looks crazy

See? Looks crazy

Did I Stutter?

Personalization is an aspect of wearable technology that is still very much in the development stage.  Siri elicits rage from me like no other technology on earth.  The main time I want to use Siri is when I’m driving or cooking but that seems to be when she goes on strike.  When I’m lost (which is all the time) I want to touch the button and get directions, however I seem to never have the right timing. Here is the usual conversation:

Kirsten: Siri, get directions to home

Siri: Hello Kirsten, what can I do for you?

Kirsten: Get directions home!!!

*Siri has timed out*


I want my wearable tech (Siri, I’m looking at you) to be intuitive enough to not be tripped up because my timing was off by 2.5 seconds. I want wearables to have the capacity to learn (I know this puts us into scary Ex-Machina or Black Mirror territory) and evolve with my patterns and behaviours.  In my fantasy world, Siri will know that when I’m driving outside of a 10 minute radius from my house that I’m probably lost and so she’s ready to direct me home or to the nearest Starbucks.  I’m hoping the new 3D Touch will have solve some of my Siri induced rage but we shall see.

I don't want to piss her off

I don’t want to piss her off

Roomba House Rules

The Internet of Things excites me because of the possibilities to be the most slothful person on earth are endless.  I have a Philips Hue and a Roomba that I ADORE and they are best household items I’ve ever owned.  To really take the internet of things to the next level, I want everything to be seamlessly connected with my wearables- Hue to automatically turn off the lights when I go to bed and Roomba to know the floor is dirty and clean it.  The new app controlled Roomba excites me but my main Roomba complaint is that you have to pick everything off the floor otherwise it will be eaten (seriously, everything needs to be off the floor or you’ll come home to a sad beeping Roomba with something tangled in its brushes).  

Cats riding Roomba will never stop being funny

Cats riding Roomba will never stop being funny


My mom and brother have Nest but I haven’t gotten one yet and it’s killing me.  Since the weather in Vancouver is just rain and we don’t get the extreme cold that the rest of Canada gets, I won’t know the delight of having a heated apartment when I walk in the door.  However, my brother (Hi Colin!) lives in Ohio so having an apartment that isn’t subarctic when he comes home is a treat (Colin also has an automatic starter for his car which is I am super jealous of).  I want my home to be connected in a smart, seamless way to my wearable technology that makes sense and is tailored to my habits and lifestyle.  When I’m home, my Apple Watch should communicate to the Nest or Hue without me having to touch a button.

Talk To Me Like One Of Your French Girls

Wearables being connected to the things around us needs to be the next frontier of travel and maps.  Last fall when I visited Versailles (how douchey was that sentence?) I waited in line for entry, then again to get a translator ear piece thing because my French isn’t that good anymore.  I abhor waiting in line so if I could have had a wearable device that would have picked up that I was standing in front of a painting of Marie Antoinette holding court and told me about it, I would have paid money for that.  If you’re lost in a foreign country, useful, intelligent proximity features would completely revolutionize the travel industry and make wearable devices more mainstream.  

Please enjoy this crappy photo of me at Versailles

Please enjoy this crappy photo of me at Versailles

Your FitBit Has The Right To Remain Silent

No matter the technical advancement, there’s a little part of me that’s suspicious of where my information is going and who can access it.  With recent hacks and privacy breaches in the news, it’s not unfounded that people would be worried about the latest wearable tech which collects more personal information about you than your bank. There was a guy in the news who’s FitBit was used against him in court for a personal injury lawsuit so there is reason to be careful with what you’re doing.  However, I try not to be an alarmist so I usually just try to get over myself. I only recently added a password to my iPhone so I’m probably not the most secure user of technology. There’s still a long way to go to get many consumers on board with having a device that monitors your most personal details.  There are tons of benefits to FitBits and other wearables but you still exercise (ha!) caution.

Good thing I don't exercise

Good thing I don’t exercise

Resistance Is Futile

Wearable technology seems to be one of those buzzwords that seems great in theory but hasn’t really panned out in real life.  I was super jazzed about the Apple Watch when it came out but as I complained about before, it was useless.  If people are expected to leap at every new Apple or Android offering, the wearable technology needs to be seamless and make our lives easier.  I don’t want to have an aneurysm screaming at Siri when I’m lost after making a wrong turn (yes, I know I should just learn directions).  I want Siri to learn that I always say the full command instead of waiting for her acknowledgment, so she should adjust to my habits.  Hue should be connected to a smartwatch and know I’m falling asleep on the sofa watching Frasier and either turn the lights off or turn them brighter if I tell it ‘don’t let me fall asleep.’  These little details are the make or break points needed for wearable technology to really gain momentum in the consumer sphere.  Currently I have a super cool light system that lets me choose any colour I want and control it with my phone, but aside from my brother, no one I know owns one. Every time people come over they LOVE checking out the colours on Hue or watching Roomba but no one has actually made the leap to buy either one.  

I don't recommend you feed Cheetos to your Roomba

I don’t recommend you feed Cheetos to your Roomba


I want the world that Star Trek promised me!


Don’t Want Your Website to End Up Like Ashley Madison? Get Piece of Mind with the 14 Oranges Semi-Annual Website Review

September 30, 2015 | By | No Comments

A website is an essential sales and marketing tool that is the face of your company and the first touchpoint for customer interaction. Websites must to be updated and evolve along with your business in order to maintain a fresh look and keep up to date with Google analytics regulations and industry changes.  Mobile searches have outnumbered desktop searches so ensuring a seamless customer experience on any device is a requirement.   

Every year web standards are updated and new methods to build websites like WordPress are developed.  For example, a site that’s several years old may have lots of HTML code so the website will load very slowly.  New coding styles and updates allow websites to be more secure and load very quickly, so take this into consideration for your website update.  Other features such as social media integration and blogs are more of a necessity than trend, but they can easily be built into web updates.

Waiting several years to update your website can lead to updates costing more money or even a complete website overhaul.  Also, with the recent number of high profile hacks, website security is not something to be taken lightly or ignored.  By making bi-yearly changes and updates to your website, you are keeping up to date with new technology, security and best practices.  Staying on top of your website helps catch possible security breaches, build your brand, increase sales and optimize performance.  Don’t let your competitors get ahead of you.

Let the 14 Oranges team evaluate your website with the following criteria:

Site Snapshot

A backup of the website would be created for disaster recovery and stored offsite.

CMS Updates

WordPress or other CMS would be updated to the latest version and related bugs addressed.

Plugin Updates

Plugins would be updated to the latest versions and related bugs addressed.

Firewall Maintenance

Software Firewall would be updated and verified.

Site Review and Code Cleanup

General review of the website and website speed would be performed.

Password Resets

Account passwords would be reset and submitted to you

Minor Changes

Minor content changes could be applied to the website as required to a maximum of 30 minutes.

Contact 14 Oranges today to get started on your website maintenance!

23 Sep

Kirsten Campbell


Nearshoring: The Best Alternative to Offshoring for North American Companies

September 23, 2015 | By |

The digital business environment is incredibly competitive, so organizations rely heavily on cost cutting measures to affect their bottom lines. With engineering costs of application development ever increasing, offshoring technical work can look like an attractive option for many corporations in Seattle and Portland.  However, offshoring presents many challenges such as language barriers, time zones and cultural differences that can easily cost a business more in the long run.  Instead of spending money offshore, companies in Portland and Seattle should be taking advantage of the nearshoring opportunities and knowledge capital just across the border in Vancouver, BC.  

Overall Cost Savings

The value of the Canadian Dollar is great news for American companies providing a real opportunity.  The talent pool north of the border is world class and currently deeply discounted at upwards of 25%. Analysts are predicting that the Canadian dollar will remain low for the rest of the year and into 2016.

Agility Through Proximity

For a company located in Seattle or Portland, nearshoring to Vancouver is a logical way to maximize value and efficiency.  Vancouver, BC shares the same time zone which allows for very easy collaboration and rapid response times.  For example, if there’s a bug, it’s easy to simply pick up the phone and call the Vancouver team instead of waiting for a response from a developer many time zones away in India or China.  

At first it may appear that the per hour rate for offshore developers is cheaper, but the turnover rates are incredibly high and quality issues stemming from miscommunication regularly push this hourly rate higher and higher.

Here’s what one of our clients had to say about nearshoring:

“We initially went overseas for our app development needs in order to save costs. The savings were quickly overshadowed with wasted time, missed meetings, buggy software, and lost code. After meeting face-to-face with 14 Oranges, we decided to make the switch and they were able to pick up where the previous developer left off without a hitch. They are highly responsive and have been able to mentor us throughout the app development project. It has been a pleasure working with 14 Oranges and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them for app development projects.” 

WholeLife Holistic Nutrition

Also, if onsite work or collaboration is required, travel from Vancouver to Portland or Seattle is incredibly fast, simple and cost effective.  For example, our Seattle based client Arris scheduled an in-person meeting at their office.  Sylvain was able to drop his children off at school in the morning, drive to Seattle for the meeting and make it back home in time for dinner.  Proximity allows both parties to operate in real time and communicate face to face whenever it’s necessary.   

Cultural Identity

The cultural business landscape along the US-Canadian border is virtually identical; therefore, communication and understanding between organizations will not be impeded by language differences, learning curves or growing pains.  Speaking the same language may seem like an insignificant detail, but when phone and email are the primary methods of communication, language is critical. Existing expectations for how business is conducted will lead to better working relationships and a similar understanding of issues because Vancouver is aware of the political, cultural and social landscape of the West Coast. This understanding is intangible and cannot be taught to companies overseas because it is implicit.

Business Regulations

It bears reminding that with NAFTA, US companies nearshoring to Canada can rest easy knowing their intellectual property is respected and will remain private.  For some companies that have engaged in offshoring, once they have paid their bill, they had no idea the fate of their documents and proprietary information.  As such, nearshoring to Vancouver reduces risk and will save you money on legal fees and the hassle of determining where your intellectual property has ended up.  

In Summary

The allure of offshoring can be tempting to organizations looking for a quick fix to cost savings; however, it is a short term solution.  Offshoring saddles companies with long term risks and headaches which could be easily avoided by choosing nearshoring to Vancouver.  For a fraction of the price, American companies can take advantage of the incredible technical talent pool available in Vancouver.  Our talent understands the West Coast culture and professional expectations that will eliminate miscommunications and allow you to get down to business.  When it comes to technical work, proximity is key.  If business travel is required, Vancouver is just a one hour plane ride to Portland and the same time zone which makes conference calls and emails easy to execute in real time.  As the digital transformation continues, more and more American companies will nearshore development work to Vancouver to capitalize on the cost savings and operational efficiencies.  

Learn more about how nearshoring can help your business

Contact 14 Oranges now at 604-304-0020




18 Sep

Kirsten Campbell


Doritos, Standing Desks and Flexibility: Creating an Appealing Work Environment for Developers

September 18, 2015 | By |

It’s no surprise that happy employees are more productive workers than those who hate their jobs.  According to Fast Company, employee happiness increases productivity by 12% but that number won’t be a surprise to anyone who has worked at a soul sucking job they despise.  Since the tech industry in Vancouver is really competitive, companies have been forced to raise the bar to attract and maintain top talent.  

Have you seen my stapler?

Have you seen my stapler?

Work to Live or Live to Work?

At 14 Oranges, we believe attracting and maintaining fantastic developers starts with work-life balance, which is why there is incredible flexibility for our schedules.  Most people here have kids so a typical 9-5 in the office is rather impractical for swimming lessons and school runs.  Yvonne did an awesome job describing life as a parent at 14 Oranges so there aren’t any parenting specifics I could add.  I’ve worked in technology for years and in my experience the flexible hours are not usually taken advantage of because people are worried they’ll be perceived as lazy or not committed to their jobs.  This is not the case at 14 Oranges and it is the number one reason we have hung onto amazing employees for so long.

Turnover can be costly for an organization, which is why we are proud of our very low turnover rate. Employees have been here since day 1 and it’s extremely rare for someone to leave.  For example, the last employee to leave wanted to start a different career but it was still sad.  Having low turnover rates speaks volumes of a company and how they treat their employees.  

Let’s Stay Together

Since most 14 Oranges developers work from home, it’s important that we get together each month for lunch.  Staying in your bubble at home can easily make someone forget they have human coworkers so we like monthly face time to remember what everyone looks like.  Stay tuned for photos of the panini party that I’ve been threatening.  In addition to bi-weekly Google Hangout meetings, we also have a summer BBQ and a Christmas lunch so we can feast on seasonal food, delight and general merriment.

None of us are this good looking

None of us are this good looking, but we ARE this delightful

Doritos: I Wish I Could Quit You

It doesn’t take much to impress me (clearly) because I think our snack cabinet is a work of art.  We have a fancy mini fridge full of beverages (Dr. Pepper for everyone!) and a shocking amount of Costco snacks.  The giant box of gummies is so simple and inexpensive to buy but this is the first workplace I’ve had where we had snacks and it’s amazing!  Eating all the chips and gummies in the office is so glorious because I can be even lazier and not walk to the cafeteria (that’s right, we have a cafeteria on site too).  I know that some people think having drinks and snacks in the office is nothing special but for me this is paradise.  Also, Sasan, I will continue to dominate you in the gummy wars (muhahahah).  Small perks mean a lot and the fact that Sylvain asks us what we want before he goes to Costco is super considerate.  I’m still working to gain support for Wine Wednesday but we shall see!

Who's in?

Who’s in? Just me? Ok, cool

Hardware Policy and Employee Investment

Each developer at 14 Oranges is provided with an equipment budget, to be used at their discretion, so they can determine what they need and spend the money accordingly. Plus, having tons of hardware around to use for testing is really cool.  Not really a form of hardware, however, our standing desks are a nice perk for those who get tired of sitting.  They can be used by anyone in the office so the fancy desks aren’t the exclusive domain of senior staff.

In June, Luis was lucky enough to attend the Apple WWDC in San Francisco to learn about current and future iOS, apps and get in the auditorium for the famous keynote.  Employee development is crucial to developers because there’s always new stuff to learn and keeping up to date on the industry is essential.  

I’ll Get Off My Soapbox, I Promise

Companies are always looking for ways to appeal to the talent pool and in our industry that’s essential because it’s so competitive.  It’s not rocket science that treating people like adults and appreciating their value goes a long way to keeping staff happy.  Being trusted to work from home and make your own schedule is something that is widely touted as the future of work but it’s very rarely executed.  Even in 2015, the majority of companies expect you to be in the office from 9-5 and those who leave to attend to children or other obligations are looked upon with suspicion.  It’s not realistic that everyone can fit their life into a 9-5 schedule and with technology we don’t have to anymore.  Freeing developers from the shackles of being chained to an office is what will ultimately attract the best talent.  Oreos and Doritos don’t hurt either…

Self portrait of my snack consumption

The most accurate depiction of my snack consumption


Off to play ping pong and foosball downstairs!

10 Sep

Kirsten Campbell


Pink iPhones, Gargantuan iPads and a $100 Pen: Unqualified Opinions on Everything Apple Just Announced

September 10, 2015 | By |

iPhone 6S & iPhone 6S Plus

As usual for an “S” year, Apple announced new phones which are faster than their predecessors without changes in form factor. One of the most dramatic changes is the addition of a rose gold colour that is pretty nice but not going to make me throw out my gold one.  The 6S and 6S Plus are supposedly getting a stronger aluminium case so they won’t bend anymore. Things took a weird turn when Apple announced the Force Touch (May the Force Be With You?) which they promptly renamed to 3D Touch because the internet (rightfully) thought Force Touch was too creepy.  This feature is based on the Apple Watch so your phone will now be able to respond to differences in tap pressure.

Squee! Apple has been reading my diary

Squee! Apple has been reading my diary


More importantly, when referring to the new iPhones, the phrase emergency selfie was uttered.  Apparently humanity has been clamouring for this technology and Apple has responded using the 3D Touch shortcut so the camera is ready to take very fast selfies.  It’s times like this I’m ok with a zombie apocalypse.

Apple's Craig Federighi is demonstrating the emergency selfie that only Kim Kardashian feels the need to use

Apple’s Craig Federighi is demonstrating the emergency selfie that only Kim Kardashian feels the need to use


*We are used to price hikes for no good reason just because we live in Canada, but a jump from $769 to $899 for a 16GB iPhone 6S and $1029 for a 64GB iPhone 6S is crazy talk.  You’re essentially forced to buy the 64GB one because 16GB is useless considering the camera is now 12 megapixels and the files are huge.  

iPad Pro

Well, if I ever end up on Alone I know what I’ll be using for my shelter.  This iPad is ridiculously big (12.9” screen) and can only be properly mocked by the glory of Buzzfeed. All jokes aside, it looks like Apple is hoping to to find a niche in specific industries (design, medical) where you need a large surface to work with but conventional laptops don’t work. To that effect, they have introduced the Apple Pencil (aka a stylus) to go with it.

Not the actual iPad Pro but I couldn't resist

Not the actual iPad Pro but I couldn’t resist


The Apple Pencil (accessory to iPad Pro)

Schools have been phasing out cursive so I never thought we would ever see a writing instrument again.  I guess the Steve Jobs era is dead and buried.  The pen will be able to position, force, and tilt which would be glorious to use on an iPad.  Really the only advancement here compared to the stylus on the Galaxy Notes is that it can detect tilt which I guess can be very useful when drawing.

Apparently we all do now

I guess a lot has changed since 2007


The Smart Keyboard (accessory to iPad Pro)

The keyboard magnetically connects to the iPad Pro and charges when in use so no extra charging needed. The first thing we thought when we saw it worked is that Apple borrowed a page from Microsoft Surface. Now let’s see if they fare better.

The smartest keyboard in the land

The smartest keyboard in the land


Apple Watch Software

No new Apple Watch was announced, just the WatchOS 2.  This OS will allow new watch faces, Siri gets smarter, GoPro functionality, easier music control and the ability to FINALLY respond to emails on your watch to name a few.  I’m glad my pleas have been answered.

Apple TV

Of today’s announcements, the Apple TV is probably where the most changes have occurred. The Apple TV now comes with a new remote which handles swipe gestures, voice control, and can detect its position (think Wii remote). Also the remote is bluetooth enabled so you no longer have to point the remote at the device. With voice control, you will be able to do very sophisticated searches and more importantly, it will “remember” your previous query so you will be able to build on them. The Apple TV will finally get closer to the Star Trek world I’ve been waiting for!  Moreover, searches will work against all services (well that’s to be confirmed) so when searching for The Walking Dead, it will show results on regular TV, Netflix, and iTunes. Another important note is that for the first time, they are now providing us developers with an SDK so apps can be built. A whole new era of possibilities have been unleashed. As usual, gaming seems to be a natural fit but really the sky is the limit here. You think of it, and come to us and we will help you build it!

This is your future TV

This is your future TV


Other unsolicited thoughts:

50 Shades of Purple

Why was everyone wearing various shades of purple?  Doesn’t everyone know that on Wednesdays we wear pink?

50 Shades of Purple

You can’t sit with us


The Birkin of Watch Straps

Hermes is making an Apple Watch strap?  There will be like 5 people in the world who can afford it and/or understand how to use an Apple Watch.

This costs more than a house in Vancouver

This costs more than a house in Vancouver


Hell Hath Frozen Over

Microsoft and Adobe made presentations of their software and how great the iPad Pro worked. Once mortal enemies of Apple (in some ways), it seems the tides have shifted.

One Republic


I have a fleeting memory of them in a Super Bowl ad with the lovely Minka Kelly and that’s about it.  Everyone was expecting someone relevant like Taylor Swift or entertaining like Kanye West but alas it was not to be.  The only memorable part of the performance were the lyrics ‘make that money, watch it burn’ which is being mocked mercilessly online now.   

Who? Exactly

Who? Exactly


Who am I kidding? I’ll probably buy it all anyways

03 Sep

Kirsten Campbell


After Waiting 20 years for Technology to Become More Humane, I Finally Got Laser Eye Surgery

September 3, 2015 | By |

On August 14th I took the plunge and got PRK laser eye surgery.  I got glasses in grade 6 (apparently braces weren’t enough) and figured that one day I would be brave enough for contacts- I wasn’t.  Fast forward 20 years and I finally snapped when I realized that I could not remember what it felt like to wake up and be able to see clearly.  After that depressing realization, I booked myself in for a consultation at Pacific Laser Eye Centre (they are in no way affiliated with this blog), waffled back and forth, then ultimately scheduled my procedure.  I chose Pacific Laser because they use the newest PRK technique that did not involve my eyeball being scrubbed out (excuse me while I scream into a pillow).  I got the newest style of PRK that is just a laser (I knew there was a reason I waited so long!) so my recovery was not the horror show that old style PRK victims received.

My laser eye surgery diary:

Friday Aug 14th

“Is it too late to cancel?”

My stomach is in knots but I choke down delicious cheese toast that I can’t enjoy because I’m taking mental snapshots of everything around me so I’ll have memories after I go blind



Xanax!  Tylenol 3!

Stare intently at the green laser beam and smell my eyes burning.  It’s over in 10 seconds and I didn’t feel a thing (thanks Dr. Holland!).

Saturday Aug 15th (coincidentally also Treat Yo Self)

Woooooooo I can see pretty well and treated myself to the gift of eyesight! Everyone with glasses is a sucker!  

In honour of Treat Yo Self I go to the casino with friends and win $36 on the dog slot machine.  At this rate I shall pay off my surgery.



Sunday Aug 16th

I’ve made a huge mistake

I can’t read my phone, watch TV or walk too far because my vision is so blurry.  This is apparently normal but I’m still alarmed.  My obsession with Alone begins because watching grown men run crying from the forests of Vancouver Island makes me feel a bit better.  Also, everything on the show is various shades of green so my blindness doesn’t detract from my viewing enjoyment.


The first few days are the best for dramatic freak outs

Tuesday August 18th

The contacts that have been in my eyes since Friday are removed and it was way worse than I expected (and I’m including showering with swim goggles and wearing old lady sunglasses to bed).  I’ve never worn contacts and this removal was like peeling a grape.  I still shudder at the memory.

After contact removal I am effectively fuzzy again.  Let’s see what the guys on Alone are doing.

Vanity, Table for One Please

The most life life altering part of the surgery wasn’t the lasering of my eyeballs or getting the nice woman at Blo Dry Bar to feel sorry for me and wash my hair while I held goggles over my eyes (thanks Kara!).  Not being allowed to wear eye makeup for two weeks was the biggest impact on my life because I was the kid from Mask and everyone pretended I wasn’t (except for the two awesome honest people who shall remain nameless).  After reading this article about women who wear makeup earning more and being treated better, I was not surprised to confirm that it’s all (depressingly) true.  As of Monday I’m back to wearing makeup so I’m not a monster who’s scaring children and bruising fruit anymore.  That was sure a long two weeks.


Phantom Glasses

Wearing glasses every single day for 20 years has resulted in my brain being unable to understand where they went.  At least once a day I reach for them only to be surprised they aren’t there anymore.  Now I can’t adjust my glasses and pretend to be pondering something really profound.  Goodbye brief, glorious window in which my nickname was Liz Lemon


Oh, the drops go IN my eyes?

I’m currently using various forms of eye drops (one is appropriately called FML) about 6-8 times a day so I’m super aware of what’s happening near my face.  For example, during the Vancouver windstorm I wouldn’t go outside because of the debris flying through the air and inevitably into my eyes.  Plus, my face feels really out there without the protection of glasses.  I’m not sure the world is ready.

*sorry to anyone at work who had to witness me using eyedrops and spilling them down my face and shirt or blinking furiously while jerking my head around. Now I know why everyone works from home.

Since the first primitive form of eye surgery, (go ahead and read it, I’ll wait) laser eye technology has progressed by leaps and bounds.  The nearly 100 year gap between the first recorded eye surgery and the more modern ones in the 90’s gives me a strong indication of how painful and rudimentary the technology must have been.  The laser technology still stuns me- I can’t get over how a laser can be shot at your eyeball for 5 seconds and then you can see.  The procedure sounds like something out of Star Trek and everyday I think about how lucky I am and I wonder what people with poor vision would have done 500+ years ago.  

eye surgery

Did all the cavemen with bad eyesight get eaten by lions simply because they couldn’t see predators?  I can’t even imagine the future of laser eye surgery (a bionic contact lense? a recording of everything you see?) and how the technology with progress.  It’s both thrilling and terrifying (Black Mirror does a phenomenal job of showcasing how current technology can easily go too far) and I can only guess at what future technology will soon make my surgery look barbaric.  Plus, I’ll be ready when the zombies come because you know who never survives something dramatic? The person with glasses!

I am not ashamed to admit that I was in total bitch panic before the surgery but it was much better than I expected it to be.  There were moments where I wondered what the heck I had done to myself, but overall it has been fine.  I was super paranoid of one of my contacts falling out but it got a lot easier once they were removed *shudder* and I didn’t have to worry as much.  I’m happy I got PRK because I won’t ever need to deal with the flap becoming dislodged which can happen with Lasik.  Yes, my recovery time was longer, but I’m playing the long game and I seem unable to not poke myself in the eye with a mascara wand.  The worst parts are over and I’d still recommend the PRK at Pacific Laser Eye Centre to anyone that’s interested.  All hail technology (and Dr.Holland).

24 Aug

Kirsten Campbell


Orange Squash Is the Fogbugz App Every Developer Has Been Waiting For

August 24, 2015 | By |

Bug tracking is a necessary evil for any mobile or web developer.  Keeping track of all the bugs is incredibly time consuming and tedious as you’re working on multiple projects for different clients (which is one of the many reasons I could never be a developer- too expensive to replace the computers I’d throw against the wall).  

To keep track of all these bugs, we internally use Fogbugz. It’s a great tool and has an awesome user interface. That being said, as a mobile development company, we noticed that one thing we were doing a lot was taking screenshots of the bugs in our apps (yes, we have some) and wanting them entered as a case into Fogbugz. We used to email them or upload them to dropbox but that was always a bit tedious so we threw caution to the wind and decided to develop a little screenshot utility for Fogbugz.

Even though we are incredibly biased regarding the greatness of wait… for….it……Orange Squash, we love it and think you will too.  Because we are the true spirit of generosity, we decided to publish Orange Squash for free on the app store so everyone can use it and love it as much as we do.

Other Orange Squash features include:

  • Simple user interface
  • Direct file upload to server
  • Add new notes to old issues
  • Select fields and groups for any Fogbugz project
  • Quick Submit button

Download Orange Squash and get started today!

21 Aug

Kirsten Campbell


Don’t Fear The Walking Dead, Just My Bumbling Attempts At Survival in Zombie Mobile App Games

August 21, 2015 | By |

In case you weren’t aware, Fear the Walking Dead, the prequel to the Walking Dead premieres on Sunday.  The teaser is probably one of the best I’ve ever seen because it reveals nothing, but the fear is palpable (I’m terrified to see what he’s running from).  This series is a prequel set in LA (but mostly filmed in Vancouver!), with no affiliation to the current Walking Dead series; instead it will feature the breakdown of society as the virus spreads.  

That sounds ominous

That sounds ominous


My main complaint about the Walking Dead was that all the good stuff had already happened.  Who cares what it’s like 9 months after the zombies have taken over? I already know that Starbucks will be gone, my iMac won’t work and my natural hair colour will show.  I want to know what it’s like as hospitals fill up, the highways are jam packed and people are desperately trying to flee to safer ground.  That’s the stuff that makes a zombie show great!  Say what you will about World War Z, but the most exciting part was when the plague had just hit so Brad Pitt and his scarf were trying to get his family out of the city and they faced challenges finding resources and safety as society crumbled.  Therefore, in honour of the upcoming zombie prequel series, I have tested and ranked mobile app zombie games (I have an iPhone 6) to get you through the next few days before Fear the Walking Dead premieres on Sunday.

He's fighting zombies, how is his scarf so perfect?! I demand answers

He’s fighting zombies, how is his scarf so perfect?! I demand answers

Dead Among Us

I just noticed that this game is for teens (that explains why I was so good at it) but that doesn’t stop me from loving it.  It’s a first person shooter game that you can control with just one hand, which I find thrilling because I love using my phone one handed (which also explains why it seems like I’m developing carpal tunnel). My siblings and I were never allowed to play video games as kids because my mom thought it would make us dumb, so I am horrible at combat games because (after 20 years), I still can’t get the hang of them, which destroys the fun because getting killed every 2 seconds is rage inducing.  Luckily, Dead Among Us doesn’t require too much coordination on my part (it’s like they’ve seen me play volleyball) so anyone can get the hang of this game pretty quickly.  My favourite aspect of the game is that I get to be a sniper perched on top of a building with my fancy bow and arrow and feel like a hero as I secure the location for fellow survivors and scientists to gather supplies.  I’m pretty sure this is exactly how Katniss felt.

I shall snipe you all

I shall snipe you all


The graphics for this game were high quality, appropriate, and interesting.  There were not a lot of options for weapons because I refuse to pay money on or for games, but that didn’t stop me until level 3.  Another feature I liked, especially when I was learning, was that I could zoom in and slow the action down so my first few attempts to oh, I don’t know, SAVE HUMANITY, weren’t stopped by my poor vision or reflexes.  Looking through the scope of the gun gave it a more realistic feeling for a newbie like me.  There was supposedly a radar available to keep tabs on the zombies as they came to eat my group but I never figured out how to use it and I didn’t suffer for it.

This does not bode well for my companion

This does not bode well for my companion


Overall, Dead Among Us was freaking awesome.  The navigation, design, graphics and interactivity were more than I expected.  For a more advanced player I can imagine the game might be less exciting, but it was exactly what I wanted and was perfect for my skill level.

Zombie Highway Android or iOS

The lure of this game was quite strong for me because I love racing games (they don’t require too much skill) and zombies.  Much to my dismay though, Zombie Highway under delivered on everything.  The instructions were vague and unclear, which I looked past because I like to play around and learn myself.  I played for a few minutes and thought ‘this can’t be it’ so I looked up the instructions to see if I was missing a huge part of the game or something.  I wasn’t.

Apparently not very far

Apparently not very


You basically just drive around in the desert trying not to let zombies hop on your car but from my experience, it was inevitable.  It didn’t seem to matter how far I drove around them, they would leap onto my car and murder me through the window (not cool guys, not cool).  Plus, they moved shockingly fast which seems to be the trend in zombie movies– don’t make them scarier, just make them faster.  I think that may have contributed to my disappointment in this game, it’s lazy and unoriginal to just make the zombies faster.  When the zombies jump on your car you’re supposed to shoot them but it all happened so quickly that it was impossible to get your gun out.  Remember when I said getting killed every 2 seconds is rage inducing?  Zombie Highway, I knew you were not long for this world (apparently there’s a Zombie Highway 2 but I refuse to waste a nanosecond of my life on it).

They didn't teach us this in Driver's Ed

They didn’t teach us this in Driver’s Ed


As a whole I didn’t like this game at all.  There wasn’t much stimulation, the graphics weren’t amazing and the whole premise seemed like something that seemed great in theory but horrible in execution.  If you like mindless, rage inducing driving games that go nowhere quickly but will remind you of every horrible childhood road trip you ever had, then Zombie Highway is for you.

Walking Dead: The Game

I had high hopes for this game because it’s the Walking Dead franchise and wow, I was not disappointed!  This was the game that plays like a movie and it was fantastic.  The stunning graphics open with the iconic Atlanta highway shot that everyone knows and the high quality art and production value are obvious throughout the whole game.  My annoyance with the beginning of the game is that you couldn’t skip the introductory video so I got halfway through it about three times and nearly gave up in frustration.  Luckily, I got over myself and persevered in order to get started with zombie killing.  As I attempted to maneuver myself out of the police car I crashed in, I was struck at how perfectly the music set the mood- I actually felt a bit of fear and dread!  

I'm in the back along with racial stereotypes

I’m in the back along with racial stereotypes


For a novice gamer like me, getting into full on zombie killing mode is difficult and doesn’t last long because I’m horrible at shooting and running (especially at the same time).  The Walking Dead wrapped the whole movie/story into the zombie killing so the pace wasn’t as fast and I was able to survive.  Having prompts for weapons or story items was a huge help so I didn’t have to fumble around in the dark looking for stuff.  I just clicked on the white dots and could choose what option I wanted.  The prompts felt like a Choose Your Own Adventure novel because I had so many options available to me.  If I wanted to snark at another character or answer questions, I was able to do so and their responses were based on what I said, not standard replies designed to continue a storyline.

This could get awkward quickly

This could get awkward quickly


The Walking Dead game had some really nice human touches like the old school answering machine that plays a message to the whole room (this never happens anymore in life, this needs to stop) and some heavy handed symbolism of a child’s colouring book (innocence!  a simpler time!  As on the nose as these items were, they did serve their purpose of forwarding the plot so I shall get off my soapbox.  

The Walking Dead mobile app game was very easy to control because you could move your finger along the whole screen instead of the bottom right hand corner which I never remember when I’m panicking and about to become a zombie’s dinner.  Since it wasn’t completely action packed I was able to enjoy the storyline and not die immediately.  So far I have met Hershel and Glenn who are characters in the TV series so there is a nice tie-in to the show.  

Take that!

Take that!


Zombie Mobile Game App Roundup

There are so many zombie mobile game apps available, it was hard to choose three. I am really impressed by the quality of the mobile games these days, especially the Walking Dead game.  Their production value was way ahead of the other games, but that’s to be expected given the success of the franchise.  The functionality and interactivity were the best in the Walking Dead game, but Dead Among Us was a close second.  The navigation only became an issue if the games weren’t clear after playing them for a few minutes.  The zombie mobile app game experience was a blast and I would recommend the Walking Dead and Dead Among Us games for anyone looking to have an undead experience before Sunday.  

See you Sunday for some Fear the Walking Dead!

See you Sunday for some Fear the Walking Dead!

07 Aug

Kirsten Campbell


There’s An App For That (Part 2)! Three More 14 Oranges Staff Reveal Their Favourite Mobile App and Why

August 7, 2015 | By |

After the initial blog post about favourite apps, I have determined that a person’s favourite app is more revealing about their personality than I initially suspected.  The app that a person reaches for the most highlights what they do with their spare time, their interests and what they value.  Who knew?

For part 2 of an ongoing series, and in no particular order of importance, I present three 14 Orangers and their favourite app. Let us know if you like them, hate them or have never heard of them!

Andrew Sommerfeld


This app gives a photographer full control of the Apple Camera (exposure, ISO, etc) on their phone. It’s great if you’ve wanted to have full ISO, exposure or aperture control over the built in camera.

I refused to download this app on principle- I won’t pay for an app unless I desperately need it.  But, from watching the demo videos I think this would really elevate my Instagram game (just in time for eggnog latte season, NOT pumpkin spice because that’s disgusting). – Kirsten


Dan Lefrancois

The Score

It has a widget that allows me to customize what shows up for sports scores, so at a glance I can get what I’m interested in. Overall, it is very customizable throughout and does provide up-to-date information when I want it.

Since I know less than nothing about sports I was surprised my phone even allowed this app to download. I chose the Canucks (duh) as my team to follow in the app.  It was cool the way all the current news stories involving the Canucks showed up so I could scroll through the ones that interest me. I could also check scores and select my favorite players to follow.  Since I don’t know any of the Canucks (except Trevor Linden whom I almost spilled wine on at the Maple Leaf Lounge at YVR) I didn’t select any players to follow. – Kirsten

I only recognize one name of the Canucks' players I'm following

Oh yeah, totally makes sense…

Sylvain Marcotte


Stocard is an app where I can store all my loyalty cards. It is free and has a great selection of existing cards but more importantly, it can also allow you to add other cards (and pictures). The great thing is that it works on my Moto 360 so I can get tellers to scan it from my wrist.

During my brief tenure with the Apple Watch I got a glimpse into the future that involves paying for things with a watch.  Once I finally got my Starbucks app to work on the watch, I was very impressed with how much better it was to pay that way.  I can only imagine a world in which ALL my loyalty cards are in one place and not jammed into my wallet. – Kirsten

The convenience! The ease!

The convenience! The ease!

Stay tuned for the next instalment of our favourite apps!