Thursday, the 8th of July, 2010, the day I finally caught up with the rest of the modern world and started writing a blog. It is not that I am a technophobe, far from it, I just didn’t ‘get’ blogging and couldn’t see what I could possibly write about that anyone else would be interested in. But recently, I have found myself searching the web for various bits of information and finding some of the answers in blogs. This coincided with me starting to work on a new project and I thought it would be useful to give some of the things I’m learning back to the web, in the hope of helping others undertaking similar projects.
So what is this project that I have started? Well I am a fan of the great Linux podcast Linux Outlaws. The two presenters of the show, Dan Lynch and Fabian Scherschel came up with the idea of an Android app for Linux Outlaws that would allow the user to download and playback the show, and to comment on episodes via the identi.ca social network using integrated commenting. The name of this app was to be Pony Express. I had recently bought an Android phone, the HTC Legend, and was interested in trying my hand at some app development, so I thought this would be a good project to get involved in.
Now, that was a couple of months ago, and the project is progressing well. During the development I found myself making extensive use of Google to solve problems and to learn more about the Android API. Many of the hits returned by Google were for blogs featuring various tutorials and hints. I found that many of the tutorials were quite limited, in that they detailed how to use one aspect of the API (for example: the media player) but did not really expand on how it might fit into a larger application. So I thought it might be useful to others if I could create a series of posts about how I would go about Android app development, if, with the benefit of hindsight I was to write Pony Express again. I aim to take an aspect of development and/or the Android API in each part of the series, and use the Pony Express code to demonstrate their use and function and how they fit into the larger application. Part 1, “You Gotta Start Somewhere..” is here.