The online glossary of mobile terms, definitions, and technologies provided by your creative team at Rocksauce Studios.



.NET is a programming language created by Microsoft which aims to make the development of applications easier by using a common framework.

3D Animator

A 3D Animator creates characters to tell a story for a film or game through the use of 3D modeling and 2D animation.

3D Character Modeler

A 3D Character Modeler creates 3D game characters and creatures according to the style and aesthetic of the project.

3D Game Designer

A 3D Game Designer is the person responsible for creating the overall gameplay, content, processes and storyline of a game.

3D Rigging Artist

A 3D Rigging Artist is the person responsible for manipulating a digital character’s geometry and that character’s interaction with its environment.

3D Technical Artist

A 3D Technical Artist is a cross between an artist and developer, who is responsible for the tools and systems associated with creating and porting  art assets.

3D Texture Artist

A 3D Texture Artist is the person responsible for creating textures on animated characters, 3D environments, and props to create a immersive experience.

3D Visual FX Artist

A 3D Visual FX Artist is the person responsible for creating and/or manipulating live footage and generated imagery to create a scene outside of a live action shot.


A Bluetooth technology which enables mobile devices to stream music to a Bluetooth enabled headset.


An Accelerometer is a electrical components inside of a device which can measure the device’s angle or motion. An Accelerometer makes it possible for a rotated phone to change its screen’s content orientation, and motion controls for many modern smartphone games.


ActionScript is an object-oriented programming language that is used for web site animation, originally created by Macromedia Inc.

Admin Portal

An Admin Portal (Administration Portal) is an interface designed for a systems owner which lets the owner manage users and content of that system. Admin Portals are typically used in systems that can potentially have controversial materials posted that may need to be removed, or systems in which users that cause problems with the system need to be able to be restricted in their use of the system.


An Aggregator is a service that collects content from multiple sources, and pulls that content into a single place that is easier to access than the many original sources.

Ex:, Google News

Agile Development

Agile development is the process of building software by creating bite-sized chunks of the final product in a limited amount of time, called a sprint. After a sprint is completed, team members select another chunk of the project to work towards in a new sprint until the client is satisfied all requirements of the product have been met.

Agile development is frequently used on large applications, or on applications where requirements may change during the actual building process. In this way the new requirements identified can simply become part of a new sprint in the project’s development – and large portions of work previously completed can still be utilized.


Ajax (Asynchronous Javascript and XML) is a programming language used to create asynchronous web applications which can send and retrieve data from a server in the background.

Alpha Build

An Alpha build is an early build of a product meant for testing purposes to correct major bugs that may affect the final product. After a majority of bugs have been corrected, an Alpha build of a product will go to the Beta build stage of completion.

Amazon Appstore

The Amazon Appstore is an application store for mobile devices that have downloaded or use the Amazon Appstore mobile application for Android. Kindles and other Amazon produced hardware come with this appstore as default and do not integrate with the standard Android market, the Google Play Store.


Analytics are sets of data that allow a applications owner to research what areas of an application users engage with and how they interact with those areas. Some Analytical software allows an app’s owner to view user taps on the screen as a heat map so they can better understand where users want to interact with their product.


Android is an open-source operating system produced by Google for mobile devices. Android focuses on the user being able to have a variety of hardware choices from several OEMs instead of one central hardware manufacturer producing all hardware for the system. The main Google supported build of Android is the Android Open Source Project (AOSP), although some manufacturers have built non-Google supported versions of the OS.


AOSP (Android Open Source Project) the code repository distributed by Google that can be downloaded freely and compiled.


An API (Application Programming Interface) is a set of commands that developers can use to access specified functionality of a mobile device.

Ex: An application could use an API to enable a device’s camera for a certain application so a user can photograph directly through that application.


Appcelerator & Titanium are platforms used to create applications for multiple OSes with one set of code. Appcelerator uses its own open source SDK which developers can use to create applications.

Apple App Store

The Apple App Store is the standard application marketplace for iOS based hardware, and features both applications for phone and tablet devices. Submission to the Apple App Store typically takes longer than its Android based counterparts due to the requirement that Apple vet each application that is submitted to its store.


An Appreneur is an individual entrepreneur who builds a new business with one or more apps as the primary focus of said business. Appreneurs may grow their offerings to included additional connected offerings, such as a robust web presence, merchandising, or additional connected apps.

Appsourcing Client

An Appsourcing Client is an individual or company who utilizes one or more dedicated, full-time resources to work on one or more projects. Appsourcing clients have the ultimate level of flexibility, allowing them to commit their design and development resources to work solely on their project until it is completed, while relying on Rocksauce Studios to handle all management of said resources.

Architect Diagram

An Architect Diagram of a system shows the system under development in the middle of the diagram and all external users, and systems those users come into play with on the outside of the diagram.


Architecture is the high level structure of a software system which defines the method of how technical requirements of a system will be met, while aiming to meet certain performance and security requirements. Parts of a software’s Architecture typically include mobile devices or end user computers, servers, databases, and more.

Art Director

An Art Director is a person that oversees individual UI artists, and manages their work according the the Creative Director’s vision for the product.


ASP (Active Server Pages) is an HTML page that includes a script processed on a Microsoft Web server before the page is sent to the user.

Aspect Ratio

The Aspect Ratio represents the width to height ratio of a device’s screen.

Ex: Older televisions had a 4:3 aspect ratio while newer HDTVs enjoy a 16:9 ratio.

Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality is a process where digital information and materials are laid over a view of the real world, typically through use of applications that can access and manipulate the view from a device’s camera.

Ex: Layar Augmented Reality application (Android & iPhone), acrossair application (iPhone)


Authentication is the way a user is recognized by a device or service. Typically Authentication is provided by a user’s password, date of birth, answer to a security question, or biometrics such as iris scan or fingerprint.


An Avatar is a graphical representation of a person.


Baas (Backend as a Service) is a technology that allows app developers to link the application they produce to pre-built cloud storage systems as well as provide an admin portal for the application. While benefits include lower cost and faster ramp-up times, this is tempered by lack of features and potential difficulties in scaling quickly.

Backwards Compatability

Backwards Compatibility allows hardware or software which uses a earlier version of a system to work with a newer version of the same system.

Ex: Early USB peripherals can be used with USB, USB 2.0, and USB 3.0 ports.


A Badge when used in mobile terms is a digital reward that a user can earn for completeing an action in an application or game.

Ex: “After 100 check-ins at Joe’s Pizza, I received the ‘Pie Guy’ badge.”


Bandwidth is the amount of data that can be sent over a cellular or wifi connection in a certain time frame.

Beta Build

A Beta build is a testing build of a product that has minor bugs or issues still to be corrected before a product’s final release, but does not contain any major bugs that still need to be addressed such as in the preceding alpha build. Typically a Beta build will be refined until the final product is polished and ready to be released to users in a release candidate.


Blackberry is a line of mobile devices which run the Blackberry OS. Blackberry devices are well known for being one of the first lines of smartphones , as well as having dedicated hardware keyboards.

Bleeding Edge (Technology)

Bleeding Edge technology is technology that is so new that while it may offer incredible advancements over current implementations, it may not be stable or completely vetted for consumer use.


Bluetooth is a technology used to connect a user’s device to other Bluetooth enabled devices that may be close to their physical location. Some uses of Bluetooth include file sharing, contact sharing, and streaming music to headphones wirelessly.


A Bootloader is a low level set of programming and the first set of code that runs on a mobile device when it is powered on. The Bootloader verifies that the device has the correct software on the correct hard disk partition inside a device, to make sure it will not load incorrect programming.


Branding is the selection of color and image meant to represent a system or service as whole, and create a particular emotional feeling from the viewer/user. Many times the branding process will also include creation of different business collateral – like a logo – which may be a user’s first interaction with a product.


Buffering is a short pause when a user loads a media file. The pause is used to load the initial pieces of that file for improved uninterrupted playback to the user.


C is a general purpose programming language and one of the most widely used languages since C compilers are available for the most computer operating systems.


C# is a general purpose object-oriented programming language that enables developers to build secure applications which run on the .NET framework.


C++ is a popular general use programming language which is used in a variety of hardware and software platforms, including systems software, application software, device drivers, servers, and video games.


When something is Cached on a mobile device, it means a copy of that content is stored in the device’s memory so that that content can be loaded again quickly as opposed to having to reload commonly used data such as a favorite web page over and over.


A Check-In is when a user uses a GPS enabled device to post their whereabouts in an application or system, so that other may see where they are.


A Client is a device that interacts with a centralized server – typically a mobile or web application.


A CMS (Content Management System) is a system commonly used to easily access or load new or updated content into an application or website, so the application doesn’t need to have an update built to simply include new content.

Code Bug

A Code Bug is an issue with a piece of software being built. Developers attempt to fix any code bugs prior to the release candidate of a project in the alpha build and beta builds.

Code Repository

A Code Repository is a storage system for code so that the stored code and easily be recalled and reused in current projects.

Competitive Analysis

Market research on an app/feature of an app in application stores and online to gain insight on an app’s/feature’s viability in the present marketplace.

Ex: A client wishes to produce a calculator application. Rocksauce then looks in the various markets to find the best calculator apps currently available, and ways for the client’s app to gain an edge over current calculator applications available.


A Compiler is a program that transforms code written in one programming language into another programming language.


Corona is an SDK built by Corona Labs that can be used to create mobile applications for iOS and Android. Corona allows developers to use the Lua programming language in conjunction with C++ and/or OpenGL to build applications. Apps created with the Corona SDK include Blast Monkeys and Streetfood Tycoon.

Creative Director

A Creative Director is the top-most creative artist in charge of a project, and oversees art directors, and individual ui artists.


Crowdfunding is when a company solicits donations from persons outside of their company to fund a particular project, usually with a promise of certain rewards for different levels of money donated.



Crowdsourcing means that a company or individual reaches out to others in the community to help them solve a particular issue. Crowdsourcing is common with applications that have a social nature background, such as review sites, and other systems where users generate (or submit from another source) the majority of content on the system.



CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a language used to attribute styles to HTML elements, and make changing multiple elements of a website faster since a developer only must change the CSS once, instead of changing each individual HTML tag individually without CSS.

Cutting Edge (Technology)

Cutting Edge technology is typically the newest available technology that is stable and ready for consumers to safely use.

Data Model

A Data Model is the description of parts of a system and how those parts work together to achieve the common goal of the system.


A Database is an organized system which allows for the persistent storing and retrieving of data or information. Databases may be local (stored on a user’s device), or remote (stored on a centralized server access via the internet).


A Deliverable is any material, item, or piece of work provided by the company to a client as part of a statement of work.

Design Programs

Design Programs are software systems used in a design process. Typical software programs to design UX and UI for software are, Axure (.rp file), Adobe Photoshop (.psd file), and Adobe Illustrator (.ai file).


A developer is a person that researches, designs, implements, and tests software and applications typically through writing code and other necessary programming for a system.


Development is the process by which the final product is being created – in terms of applications, it is when coding is written by a specialized team. There are many different kinds of development including waterfall method, agile, and more.


DLNA (Dynamic Living Network Alliance) is a wireless technology which allows users to stream photos and videos from a device to a television.

Dynamic Text

Dynamic Text is a placeholder which pulls in custom text you want displayed in response to a search.


An Emulator is a software tool used for testing a build of an application which mimics the attributes of a physical hardware device.

Enterprise Client

An Enterprise Client is an individual or company, engaged in an ongoing project for a determined number of months or years. Enterprise Clients have the flexibility to allocate various resources on one or more projects, depending on need, allowing for significant levels of change when necessary. The Enterprise relationship works well for larger projects, pre-existing projects, Brand-Extenders or for companies who have numerous art or development needs on a consistent basis.


A EULA (short for End User License Agreement) is the license used in most software containing the legal terms and conditions binding the user of the software and the software’s maker.

Feature Creep

Feature Creep  is when a project’s requirements increase in number or scope during  the design or development process, going beyond those originally planned. Feature Creep typically leads to a risk in a product’s quality or planned scheduled release date.


An application’s flow describes how a user will get from one place in the application to the next, or how certain interconnected features will work together to achieve the user’s end goal.

Ex: “First the user will create an account, then they will be prompted to sign-in. Upon signing-in the user will be directed to the home screen, or dashboard.”


Fragmentation is the problem where one application cannot be created for all current versions of one platform or OS.


Freemium is a business model where users can get a piece of software for free, while advanced features cost the user a certain price.


An FTP (FIle Transfer Protocol) is a common method used to upload or download  files or data to or from a server on the internet.

Game Concept Artist

A Game Concept Artist is the person responsible for creating the initial concept sketches for game characters, locations, enemies, weapons, etc.

Game Sound Designer

A Game Sound Designer is the person who creates new sounds or manipulates pre-existing sounds to create a fitting audio element for a game.

Game Sound Editor

A Game Sound Editor is the person who selects and assembles recordings for the final sound mix of a game from all available dialogue, sound effects and music.


Geo-Fencing is a technology that allows a user of a system to create digital boundaries around a physical location in the real world, typically in order to activate a predefined action when a device enters that area.

Ex: “As soon as I walked within a mile of the downtown area, the app started sending me coupons for downtown businesses.”


Geo-Tagging is adding location based data to a physical location in the real world. This data can include things like images, video, text, recordings and other items that may relate to the real world spot.


A gesture is a motion made by a user, typically on a device’s screen with one or more fingers, that allows a certain action to take place.

Ex: Pinching, Swiping


Github is a web hosting system for projects that uses the Github control system. Github offers both free and paid accounts depending on the type of project being produced.

Google Play Store

The Google Play Store is the standard app marketplace for Android based hardware which run Google services. The Google Play Store includes applications for both phone and tablet hardware, and was created to replace its forerunner, the Android Market, to include better features and design. Submitting an application to the Google Play Store is typically easier since there is typically no submission or wait time to get new applications listed.


GPS stands for Global Positioning System, and is one of the systems which can be used to determine a device’s location in North America. A data connection is not needed to determine a location with GPS, although it may be helpful.


A Gyroscope is a sensor built into high-end devices that senses angular momentum of a device. Gyroscope information is typically used in mobile games along side of accelerometer information to control gameplay.


Feedback for the user when they interact with virtual objects in an application.

Ex: When the user makes a mistake in a game and the device vibrates.

Hard Reboot

A Hard Reboot takes place when the user physically removes a device’s battery, or presses a certain key combination on the device to make it suddenly turn-off followed by the user powering the device back on to clear problematic software issues.

Hashtag (#)

A Hashtag is a symbol used in social media networks to give tags or indicators to a snippet of text being shared amongst users. Often when a social media user wants to search for a particular term, they can do so easily by including a Hashtag in front of the search term to find posts where that term is used in a prominent way.

Ex: “I love #pizza. It’s my #favoritefood.”

Hero Screens

Hero Screens are screens within an application which are generally thought to be the most important, without which the application could not fulfill its primary function.


HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) is a standardized language used to mark web text files in order to change their style and attributes. HTML is typically the language websites are created from.

Hybrid app

A Hybrid App is an application written in common web code like HTML, CSS, and Javascript that runs on a phone through the use of a native application shell created with the OS’s standard SDK. Although sometimes easier to produce, Hybrid Apps sometimes cannot access the same device resources that a native app can – such as the device’s camera, or accelerometer.


An icon is the visual representation of an application which lives on the user’s phone, tablet, or computer which the user can touch to launch that application. Sometimes but not always, an icon will include the logo of a service to further that service’s branding and marketing efforts in the user’s mind.


An IDE (Integrated Development Environment or Interactive Development Environment) is a software suite that provides resources to programmers to build software. Typically IDEs include of a code editor, automation tools and debuggers for building the software.


A unique serial number on a piece of hardware which identifies a particular user’s mobile device.

In-App Purchasing

In-App Purchasing allows the user to purchase something directly through a mobile application without the need to go elsewhere to complete the purchase. Typical In-App Purchases consist of digital goods or subscriptions, and when In-App Purchases are made usually the device’s corresponding application store will receive a percentage of revenue from that purchase.


iOS is an operating system created by Apple and runs on Apple’s mobile devices, such as the iPad and iPhone.


IPS (In-Plane Switching) display technology which gives more saturated color to a screen as well as better viewing angles.


Iterative describes a process where a piece of software is created and/or improved by developing small sections of the software over time.


A Jailbroken device is one that has had its hardware or software modified to allow programs or actions to happen that the device’s manufacturer didn’t intend, and in some cases does not agree with. Typically Jailbreaking refers to iOS devices, while the process is referred to rooting on Android devices.

Ex: Jailbroken iPhones can download applications from 3rd party app stores, instead of just through Apple’s.


Java is the language all native Android applications are written in through the use of the Eclipse integrated development environment (IDE).


JavaScript is a massively popular programming language which is built into web browser that developers can use to make web pages more interactive.


Jira is an online project tracking system created by Atlassian where users can keep track of a product’s bugs, issues, and manage the project as a whole.


jQuery is a multi-browser Javascript library which makes it easier to use Javascript on a website from standardizing common web tasks.


JSON (JavaScript Object Notation), is a programming language which uses human readable text to send data objects consisting of key:value pairs. Typically, it is used primarily to send and receive data between a server and web app, instead of XML.


Kanban is a flavor of agile development where a product’s production is tracked using a card based system throughout its development.


Latency refers to the delay time it takes for a signal to travel from one device to another device. Latency includes not only the time it take information to travel across a network – but also how long it takes for that information to be interpreted by the receiving device.


Lean processes can be summed up by the idea that any expenditure of resources toward any other goal than adding value to a product is wasted resources, and therefore should not take place.

Legacy Software

Legacy Software is software that is older than current software, that may or may not still be supported by its manufacturer. Typically Legacy Software is still being used because it contains critical business needs for an enterprise.

Licensed Code

Licensed Code is code that has been written by a third party which can be used in a product that third party is unconnected with after a licensing agreement is reached. Often developers use Licensed Code because it may be cheaper than writing their own version of the features detailed in the Licensed Code.

Light Sensor

A Light Sensor recognizes changes in the amount of ambient light around a device, and is typically used to control or augment a device’s screen brightness.


Linux is an open-source computer OS based on Unix. Unlike other major operating systems of the day, Linux is collaboratively developed, so no single company is responsible for its ongoing cost or support of the OS as a whole.

Live Wallpapers

Live Wallpapers are animated wallpapers used on the homescreen of the Android mobile OS.

Logic Map

A logic map is a high-level visual representation of the screens and sections of an application or website. A logic map gives the client and the application’s builders a rough starting place to ideate where different features and screen will appear in the final product, and how those screens and features are connected to other items within the application.

A logic map can be thought of in the same terms a table of contents can be thought of for a book –  It is a guide for final content.

Master Services Agreement

A Master Services Agreement (MSA) is an agreement between a company and its clients defining their work relationship.


An MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) is a game on a device or span of devices where players can interact and work towards common goals or compete inside the game.


MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) is a message service which allows mobile users to send files to each other through their mobile data service.

Mobile Optimized Design

Mobile Optimized Design refers to a website that has been built to solely cater to viewers using mobile devices. Although Mobile Optimized Design is similar to Responsive Design, the two should not be confused as Responsive Design can potentially cater to many more screen sizes than a Mobile Optimized Site.

Monetization Strategy

A Monetization Strategy is the plan an application’s owner has on how they will start generating revenue from their application. Common strategies include in-app advertising, in-app purchasing of digital goods, or subscription models.

Mood Board

A mood board is created by a UI artist to give a client options and insight on how artwork will look and feel at the end of the user interface’s completion. Typically mood boards combine color, text and sometimes image, to help a client choose a graphical direction for their project to proceed in.


Multitasking is the ability for a device to run multiple applications at one time.

Music Designer

A Music Designer is the person responsible for creating the music for a particular project.


An MVP (Minimum Viable Product) is software which has only the features which are needed to bring a first version to market.


MySQL (Structured Query Language) is a popular open-source management system for databases.

Native Application

A Native Application is an application that has been written for a specific OS, typically using that OS’s standard SDK (Software Development Kit). Native applications usually can act faster and with more robust features than a web application.


NFC (Near Field Communication) an off shoot of RFID technology, NFC allows a user’s mobile device to communicate over short distances with another NFC capable device through  the use of high frequency radio waves. NFC is currently gaining popularity as a form of payments for real world goods through the use of different mobile payment applications.


NOOK Apps is an Android based app store for Barnes & Noble mobile hardware products such as the NOOK HD. Although Barnes & Noble has its own version of an app store, their newer Android based tablets also include the standard Android app store, the Google Play Store.


OAuth is a method by which a user can give a third party application or system permission to access one of their other accounts without needing to provide log-in credentials.


Objective-C is the language in which all native iOS apps are written in, via the use of Apple’s xCode integrated development environment platform (IDE).


OCR (Optical Character Recognition) is a technology which allows handwritten text to be scanned by digital means so it can be converted into a digital format and edited or stored.


An OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) is a company that manufactures a particular product, or line of products.


Object-oriented programming (OOP) is a programming language system which is organized around “objects” instead of “actions” – and data rather than logic. Typically, a program has been viewed as a system that acquires data, decodes it, and produces some data as output.

Open Source

An Open Source piece of software means that the original source code for the software is free to use, redistribute, and may be modified freely.


OpenGL (Open Graphics Library) is a specification which defines a cross-language, cross-platform API for coding applications which creates 2D and 3D graphics. Typically, OpenGL is used in video games and graphic rendering applications.


OS (Operating System) is the underlying programming that a mobile device uses to run applications. The OS controls a device’s most basic operations.

Ex: iOS (iPhone, iPad), Android (Galaxy S4, Nexus 4)


A Patent is a title or license from a governing authority to the rights or ownership of a particular invention for a set period of time, so that other entities cannot produce use or sell that invention.


Perl is a family of general purpose, high level, dynamic programming languages. Perl is used for graphics programming, network programming, and other applications.


PhoneGap & Cordova are platform development tools allowing developers to write software for multiple platforms through writing code only once. Typically code is written is HTML, CSS, and Javascript as opposed to SDK software.


PHP is an open-source server-side programming language used typically for web which has also branched out into being used as a general purpose scripting language. Typical PHP files can contain text, HTML, CSS, Javascript, as well as PHP language.


PMF (product market fit) is the act of being open to constantly iterating changes to a product (in our case, an app) to ensure that it best resonates with its target audience.

PMF starts with the creation of a solid MVP, which is then released onto the market. As user feedback is gained, the product is modified to fall into line with what the market wants and expects, until product market fit is achieved. Sometimes this will result in a final product which is much different from the one originally launched on the market.

Notable companies which embraced the PMF concept are AirBNB and Instagram.


Postgre (short for PostgreSQL) is an open-source database management system which has a priority on extensibility and standards compliance.


PPI (Pixels Per Inch) refers to the density of pixels on a device’s screen. Typically the higher the PPI the higher the resolution of the screen, and clarity of the content depicted on the screen.

Programming Languages

Programming Languages are specific languages used to write computer programs and software.

Common front-end programming languages include, but are not limited to: PHP, Javascript, HTML, CSS, Ajax, etc.

Common back-end (server) programming languages include, but are not limited to: PHP, C#, C++, Java, MySQL, Postgre, SQL, Ruby, etc.

Project Scope

Project Scope is the work that needs to be accomplished to deliver a product, service, or result with specified features and functions.

Proof of Concept

A Proof of Concept is a prototype meant to demonstrate a principle, or prove a concept or theory is feasible before creating an actual working model of the product.

Prototype (aka TapThrough)

A prototype or TapThrough, is an interactive representation of an application that a client or user can actually interact with as though it was a real product. Typically prototypes are completed in wireframe form (without final graphics & artwork), and can be loaded onto the actual device that the final application is targeted for.

Proximity Sensor

A Proximity Sensor is able to recognize when an object is close to it physically, and is typically used to turn off a device’s screen during a phone call when a user’s face is close to the screen so the user doesn’t inadvertently press buttons on the screen while on a voice call.

Push Message

A type of technology which allows a server to give a user’s device a message without the user needing to take any action.

Ex: Email, SMS, MMS


Python is a general purpose, high-level programming language which allows programmers to write functions in fewer lines of code than other languages such as C.


QA (Quality Assurance) is the process by which products are reviewed to make sure their are no errors in that product. The QA process typically includes review of content, text, and user testing for a product.

QR Code

QR Codes (Quick Response Code) are matrix style barcodes that can contain various types of information. QR Codes can typically be easily scanned by barcode scanning applications for mobile devices, giving the user a web URL, a virtual contact card, text information, and more.

Release Candidate

A Release Candidate is a build of an application that has already passed the alpha and beta build requirements, has very few minor bugs and is ready to release to end users.

Responsive Design

Responsive Design is a design process that tries to give user’s of a website the best viewing and user experience no matter what type of device they are accessing the site with or the screen size of that device. Responsively designed sites may cut out complicated web content and interactions that could potentially be problematic on smaller mobile based screens.


Rocksauce is the unparalleled essence of awesomeness from which all the world’s most beautiful facets are generated. Rocksauce is an expression of excellence and a declaration of joyful exuberance.

When applicable, it is always recommended that you find a way to rub some sauce on it any chance you get.

Rocksauce Studios

Rocksauce Studios is the world-renowned, award-winning, mobile design & development studio. Based in sunny (and often really, really hot) Austin, Texas, Rocksauce builds tantalizingly intuitive, blindingly beautiful & responsive beyond belief mobile applications for corporations, Appreneurs, and themselves.

Lucky are those who consider Rocksauce Studios as their go-to creative partner.

Root (Rooted)

When a phone is Rooted (meaning the user has access to the lowest levels of the device’s OS) the device is able to be modified in ways that the device’s manufacturer didn’t intend, such as running applications and services an un-rooted phone would not be able to run. Usually Root is used in terms of Android based technology in mobile, while iOS devices achieve similar results though Jailbreaking.

Ex: A user may root their phone to be able to change the OS running on the device.


RSS (Rich Site Summary) is a type of the XML programming language which allows constantly updated information such as news headlines to be updated frequently in a lightweight manner compared to viewing a typical website.


Ruby is an object-oriented general purpose programming language who focus is power and simplicity.


RubyMotion is a commercial Ruby based system for creating iOS and OS X applications quickly.


SaaS (Software as a Service) is a model in which software is subscribed to via a web interface for a period of time rather than purchased outright on a disc or other means from its maker.


Scalability refers to a systems ability to work properly when the system grows to accommodate significantly more users than it was initially.


Scrum is a flavor of agile development, where a scrum master interacts between a product owner and the employee designing the product in the attempt to remove all obstacles from that employees work, and making sure the agile team stays within the set agile development structure.


An SDK (Software Development Kit) allows a developer to program software through the use of a set of standardized tools for a particular platform or OS. In the mobile world almost each mobile OS has its own SDK which is separate and different from those used by its competitors.

Server (aka Web Server, or Backend)

A Server when discussed in mobile terminology, is the hardware and/or software a mobile device or application communicates with to upload and download the data being requested by a mobile application.


Side-Loading refers to being able to load an application onto a mobile device outside of the device’s typically used app store.

SIM Card

A SIM (subscriber identity module) Card which stores data necessary to allow a user’s mobile device to connect with their cellular service provider.  Although SIM cards are used on all GSM (AT&T, T-Mobile) type mobile devices, other types such as CDMA (Verizon, Sprint) devices have the required information programmed right into the device.


Skeuomorphism is a design style where the new design of an object keeps certain features for decorative purposes of an original design where those features were functional.

Ex: A plastic baseball bat that appears to have wood graining in its surface texture.


SMS (Short Messaging Service) is a messaging technology that allows two users to send text based messages to one another up to 160 characters. Some phones will turn a message longer than 160 characters into an MMS message automatically before sending it.

Soft Keys

Soft Keys (short for software based keys), are software based buttons that can change visually or functionally depending on the context they are used in.

Ex: the iPhone keyboard consists entirely of Soft Keys, while some phone models still rely on hard keys (an actual physical keyboard built into the hardware).

Soft Reboot

A Soft Reboot is simply rebooting a device via software prompts on the device itself to make it reboot and clear problematic software malfunctions.

Splash Screen

A splash screen is the first page of an application that shows itself while the content of an application is being loaded. Typically splash screens will feature the logo of the application or company representing it, as well as some eye-catching graphics.


A Sprint is when a team gets works together for a period of time to work toward a common set of user stories typically on an agile based development project.

Sprint Backlog

A Sprint Backlog is the list of items a development team is going to attempt to address via the next upcoming sprint.


SQL (Structured Query Language) is a special-purpose language designed to manage data inside databases.

Common flavors of SQL include, but are not limited to MySQL and Postgre.


SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a form of encryption used to secure digital communications over the internet. Many web retailers use SSL to create safe environments for their shoppers who provide personal financial information for a transaction.

Statement of Work

A Statement of Work (SOW) is a written document attached to a Master Services Agreement that is signed by the company and the client which specifies the work to be performed by the company on behalf of the client.

Store Acceptance

Store Acceptance (for iOS) is when an application submitted to the Apple App Store get the green light to be published.


Symbian is an open-source operating system created for mobile devices which includes associated libraries, interface frameworks and common tools. Symbian was used by a variety of mobile device OEMs such as Samsung, Motorola, Sony Ericsson, and Nokia. Symbian was the most popular smartphone OS worldwide until 2010, when it’s market share was overtaken by Android.


A Tag is a keyword attached to a digital file to help categorize that file and make searching for it easier.


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Head over to Tapsauce to further your education.


Tethering means a user connects another computer or mobile device to their primary device so the computer can share the primary device’s data signal to get online.


A theme is a particular look of an application, where all on-screen elements are created to look cohesive. Some applications allow users to choose a custom theme to showcase their personality.

Trade Secret

A Trade Secret is a confidential technique or process used by a company for the creation of its products or business which is not generally known.


A Trademark is a legally registered or established by use word, set of words, or symbol representing a company or a particular product.


Trello is an internet based project management software where users can manage a project using the principles of the kanban agile method.

Unity (Game Engine)

Unity is a popular cross-platform game engine with an integrated IDE which under certain circumstances is free for mobile developers to use. Games made via Unity include Bad Piggies and Temple Run 2.


Unix is a multi-user, multi-tasking computer OS. There are many flavors of Unix, and it is known for consisting of a modular set of basic tools that all perform a limited function.

Unreal (Game Engine)

Unreal is a game engine created by Epic Games used in the first person shooter, Unreal. Even though primarily created for fps (first person shooter) games, Unreal has also been used for a variety of other game types. Games created with Unreal include XCOM, Rune, and Mass Effect.

User Experience (UX)

User experience attempts to identify behavior, emotional feeling, attitude, and more about the product a user is interacting with. User experience includes all aspects of a user’s contact with a service or system – good, or bad.

Ex: “I love the way my new car drives, but the navigation system is difficult to navigate.”

User Interface (UI)

User Interface is the graphical interface in which a person interacts with a digital product. It includes everything the user can view and touch in a product.

User Stories

A user story is a simple sentence that identifies a type of user of an application, an action that user wishes to do, and the intent behind that action. User stories are helpful to create before any work begins on a product to identify the features the product should have to be functional.

Ex: As a user, I want to be able to create a profile in the application, so that other users can find me inside the application.

UX Artist

A UX Artist is a person responsible for creating the user experience of a software product, and ensures it meets usability guidelines.

Voice Artist

A Voice Artist is an actor who commonly is hired to play the part of a character in a game by playing the characters voice.


VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) allows a user to use voice communication over a data signal. Although all cellular voice communication is technically VOIP, the term is commonly used in conjunction with technology such as Skype, and Google Voice.


VPN (Virtual Private Network) technology allows users to connect to a remote network that they may not physically be close to. Typically this technology is used for employees that need to have access to certain material on a corporate network while they are off-site.

Warranty Phase

The Warranty Phase is the period after acceptance of the release candidate during a waterfall method project, where development bugs are fixed at no additional cost to the client.

Waterfall Development

Waterfall development is a process where all requirements and their implementations are figured out in advance of the project’s development. Waterfall development can be more formal of a process than agile, since requirement change during the Waterfall process could result in significant portions of work needing to be redesigned when the new requirements are added.

Web App

A Web App is an application which lives on the internet, which can be accessed through a devices browser. Much like hybrid apps, Web Apps do not have full access to all resources of a device like a native app does.

Web Service

A Web service is a method of communication between two electronic devices over the internet. Typically a centralized computer called a server is used to store information common to all users of a mobile app, and that information is exchanged with the app via a web service.

Web Services Endpoint

A Web service endpoint is the URL on the internet where a particular web service is accessed by devices trying to communicate.

Whiteboarding (aka Brainstorming)

A whiteboarding meeting or session will typically involve one person from each discipline creating the final product, in order that they can discuss potential ideas for an application, or avoid potential pitfalls that may arise during the product’s creation. During a whiteboarding session members building the product may also discuss times needed to accomplish various features or user stories needed for a product’s completion.

Whiteboarding can be thought of as the primordial soup of the app building process.


A widget is a small graphic which displays information the the user, or allows the user to access an application from a place they usually wouldn’t be able to. In mobile widgets can refer to items on the Android or Windows Phone homescreen. In Windows Phone widgets are referred to as “Live Tiles.”

Windows Phone

Windows Phone is a mobile OS programmed in C/C++ and created by Microsoft to be the successor to the earlier Windows Mobile OS from the early 2000′s. Windows Phone is known for its grid based layout, referred to a “Live Tiles,” and has phone models produced by a variety of manufacturers.


In mobile terms Wiping a device is erasing all data on it so that it returns to factory conditions.

Work for Hire

Works for Hire is work created by an employee while they are under employment from a company, or work created for a client where the parties have agreed to the worker producing a Work for Hire in a contract.


XML is a standard simple way of encoding text and data, so that its content can be decoded by a variety of computer hardware regardless of operating system or application.

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