No, not at all, I wish we could do as well as those apps!
One thing they can go into is a lot of different areas like education styles, and different work flows and usages. Like I said, I don’t really do note-taking, but for some people it’s everything.
When I started SuttaCentral, I really wanted to do a first class app for suttas. And I think we’ve done a pretty good job! But one of the immediate issues we faced was the lack of quality content, i.e. complete, readable, and accurate translations. So we have focused a lot on creating that content, and while we’re in a much better place for English, there’s still a way to go.
What I would really love is to see people taking our data and using it to do cool things.
The good news is: all our data is open source, it’s not encumbered by copyright, and everything is
json all the way down. So this gives a really clean and consistent data source for app makers.
The apps you’re speaking of are the results of a long process of development and evolution, and the massive investment of time and money to make them happen.
So long as we lack a serious institute for doing this in Buddhism, we won’t be able to keep up. But what we can do, I think, is develop more specialized, focussed apps that aim to do one thing well. @karl_lew and @sabbamitta are doing this with their Voice app, which is really tremendous. And there are so many other applications.
I could see one that is designed as a “book club” app. A meeting room for discussing suttas, with integrated suttas and note sharing.
Or another that’s based on personal note-taking and organizing, letting you shuffle things around and put them in folders and such.
Or another that’s a simple “sutta of the day”.
Or another that’s aimed at a classroom setting, with stated goals and learning objectives.
Or another based on stepped learning, with incremental updates of suttas at staged periods, prompting a gradual learning.
Or … (insert your idea here!)