Posts Tagged ‘Android’

Android Development: The Fail

Monday, February 7th, 2011

So back in October I started the process of learning to do development for to android. Sadly, I am here today to admit that went poorly. This is my reflection on why it went badly and how I expect to better next time.

Problem 1: Me. Yup, that is right. The first problem I ran into was me. I have a lot of ideas for applications for Android and in general. The problem isn’t that I jumped right into development, it was when I jumped I landed in a spot that was over my head and that made me instantly frustrated. With in days of installing the tools and SDK my drive had died. I just got over whelmed with all the new that I didn’t take the time to learn.

Solution: While I hate doing the typical “Hello World” type apps, it is a necessary evil. It is the steps needed to ramp up understanding of the environmental. What I was trying to do was not hard but because I didn’t know the basics of Android development, it was difficult to find help. The process isn’t hard and takes a bit of time but ramping up is needed to keep from being overwhelmed.

Problem 2: Holy cow, embedded application development is slow. Let me be clear, development isn’t slow but getting you application to run via emulator or on a device is painful. When it takes a few minute for my application to run, this just kills the fun and drive to continue. Especially when learning. When I was waiting, it was so easy to get side tracked.

Solution: I hear the sdk and emulators are getting better and faster. I am also in needed of a new PC which is pushing 5 years old or at least an upgrade or 2. Other than that, I am not sure what else I can do.

So the biggest problem was me. Once I can get through them, it should be pretty easy to continue. I plan on starting this again as I think there is some positive applications I could contribute to the community. However this is on hold for the moment. Need to get caught up on technologies related to my job, mainly ASP.NET MVC

Android Development: The Install

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

I recently picked up my first smart phone. After years of wanting to move up to a smartphone but holding off because of price, I finally caved and picked up a HTC Desire. It is running Android 2.1 out of the box. It is a pretty slick phone. So far I have enjoyed my prechuse.

One of the reason I decided to pull the trigger was the idea of creating application for the phone. By day I am a .NET developer. Mainly C#. I was sort of excited to learn a new development environment and langue because I have been in .NET land for so long. I figure it is time to branch out. Yeah java is not much different than .NET but you have to start somewhere. 🙂

So I had some time to get the Eclipse IDE setup and ready to go to start my journey. I went to http://developer.android.com and followed the instructions on getting started. I am starting from scratch. The machine (win7) I am working on didn’t even have the Java runtime installed yet. Since I am a novice when it comes to Java and Eclipse, I followed the installation steps for the Android SDK. They seemed straight forward.

First step: Get eclipse. Sounds easy enough. Read through the section for ecplise which stated…

A Java or RCP version of Eclipse is recommended. For Eclipse 3.5, the “Eclipse Classic” version is recommended.

What does that even mean? So I want to the Eclipse site and downloaded the Java version of Eclipse 3.6 and continued to the section to install the Android Develipment Tools (ADT).  This is where things get more confusing because I was greated with…

Caution: There are known issues with the ADT plugin running with Eclipse 3.6. Please stay on 3.5 until further notice.

Grrrrrr…. But I just downloaded 3.6.1!! To limit the number of issues I run into I decide to follow what Google recommends and found a copy of Eclipse 3.5. No big deal. I go to run Eclipse and it promptly fails stating it can not find the JVM. At this point I was confused because I had thought that I installed Java at some point in the past. Yeah, I was wrong. Whoops. Over to the Oracle to get the JRE/JDK.

I am running win7 x64 and did what anyone running x64bit OS would do. I download the x64 windows binary. Install Java. Run eclipse. Eclipse fails again. Still stating that it could not find the JVM. Ugh. The message box suggest to add the path to the JVM to my system path. A few clicks later and it should be good to go right? Nope, now Eclipse crashs but with a log/debug message.

At this point I was about ready to give up. That is until it dawned on me. “Hey stupid! You probably can’t run 32bit Eclipse with 64bit JRE!” An uninstall and reinstall of the JRE and eclipse is running!

From here on out everything seem to work correctly. Totally elapsed time: ~2 hours. No really 2 hours.

My enthusiasm has lessened alot because of the frustrating install. I mean I have not even started to write a hello world Android app yet. I am planning on sharing my experience as I go and comparing it to how I view the .NET start up experience.