‘Earth Calling Mars’ – Our Quirky Marstalk App Project

Marstalk Mobile Development project

We’re excited today to announce a new app we’ve just launched for one of our South African clients.

What made this particularly exciting to us was the radically different request from our typical mobile app requirements. It’s not an interface to a CMS, nor is it an accompanying app to an existing web or SaaS application, but something the client wanted just for educational and fun purposes.

Marstalk is for those who are curious to see how communication might be in the (near) future when we are sending messages from Earth via our mobile devices to friends on Mars!

So with some significant discussion, some astronomical scientific research, and specifications of both Earth and Mars orbiting behaviours, we developed a scientific model that would for the current point in time, calculate, based on the speed of light, how long it would take for messages to reach recipients on Mars. Considering this can be anything from roughly 2 minutes when both planets are nearest each other to roughly 23 minutes when they’re farthest apart, your message receipt will not be instant.

marstalk app screen.

From that point forwards it was (simply) a matter of producing a clone of our favourite messaging apps and integrating that with our astronomical model.

Other features we built were the ability to invite other friends (you need to communicate with someone else after all!) and also the ability to send photos, files, and images.

Marstalk showing messaging between Earth and Mars

We did cheat a little, as we wanted to give the recipient some indication that they have an incoming message on its way. Of course, this isn’t realistic as it would take the notification just as long to reach the recipient as the message itself.

So we thank our client Martin @ Kalkbay in Cape Town for the opportunity to build this interesting little tool.

Marstalk App

Founder of Tucanoo Solutions Ltd, a Cloud / Web Application development company. AWS Cloud Solutions Architect. Specialties: Spring Boot, Java, Grails, React.JS, App Architecture, Agile, Scrum, Git, AWS, Javascript.

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