Just recently I wrote a list app for iPhone, so I could maintain lists with items in them. I wanted to jazz it up a bit by using a count indicator similar to the one you see in the mail app, which shows you how many messages you’ve had from someone (you know the one… the little bubble with a number in it). Anyway, turns out that Apple don’t provide a mechanism for this so I wrote my own one. You can see it over there to the left (a little gray bubble with a count in it) and this post basically shows you how I achieved it (with code and an example project).
All it’s essentially doing is using Core Graphics to draw a line. That’s all. One line, except to get the rounded ends I’m using a cap as demonstrated in many of the Apple examples. I thought this was easier than figuring out how to round it off manually. Then I take the text and paste it as close to center as I can.
Now it’s not perfect I know… changing the font size doesn’t always vertically align the number properly – but it does look nice enough, and I’m sure someone can make use of this even if a little tweaking is required. At around 14 point font size it looks good….