How to develop Android apps: coding Java using Eclipse

Programming an Android app yourself is “the long, hard road” but it can be extremely satisfying! Learning how to develop Android apps without any previous coding experience means you will have to learn about Java, the Android SDK and a few programming tools.

To get started, follow these steps to get you up and running developing apps.

1. Download and install Java Developer Kit (you can skip this if you are on a Mac)

You probably already have Java installed on your computer: this is called the Java Runtime Environment (JRE). But you need the Developer Kit (JDK). I use version 6, because 7 didn’t work with Eclipse (more on that later).

2. Download and install Eclipse

Eclipse is the program in which you actually write the code for your app.  Among other things, it helps you to find errors in the code you write. It is also needed to compile the app: turning your code into a program that runs on Android devices. Getting the right version of Eclipse can be tricky, I spent some time finding a version that worked with the JDK on the 64 bit version of Windows 7. In the end I found that on my system, version 3.6.2 worked with the other tools in this guide.

3. Download and install the Android SDK.

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The Android Developer Kit contains the tools to make Java code that works on Android devices. It has options for making versions of your app for different devices and different versions of Android. There is also an emulator: this simulates an Android device on your computer so you can test your apps without having to install it on an actual phone or tablet!

4. Add platforms and packages to the Android SDK.

You need to do this so you can develop apps for different versions of the Android operating system. It also has some very useful tools.

5. Install the ADT plugin for Eclipse.

This will add the functions to Eclipse that you need to make Android apps.

6. Start building your first app – Hello World

Making a “Hello World” program is usually the first project when a programmer starts with a new language or platform. Doing this exercise, you will be introduced to the basics of Android app development. There are several tutorials for this on the internet.

7. Build your first real app.

What kind of app do you want to make? If it is a complicated idea, perhaps it is best to start with something simpler: for instance, an app with just one of the many functions you have in mind. Or, if you have several ideas for apps, start with the one you think will be the easiest to create.

If are planning to do all the developing yourself, you will run into problems (even if you are an experienced Java developer!). For instance, Eclipse tells you that there are errors in your code but you don’t understand the error message… or maybe if  you compile and run the app it stops immediately or crashes when you push a button.

When you run into problems like that, try Googling the error message. Many times you will find the information on a site called Stack Overflow. Here, programmers come together to discuss coding problems. Many talented and experienced programmers are there to help you.

6. Publish in the Google Play Store.

Great, you’ve reached the finish line: your app is ready to be unleashed upon the masses! However, if you want those masses to actually find and use your app, the story doesn’t end here. Promoting and maintaining your app are subjects that I’ll cover in other tutorials.

By now I can imagine you are overwhelmed by all this information. Just getting the right tools in place can be daunting for some people, I know it was for me. But fear not: just take it one step at a time… It will be difficult at times but, like I said in the beginning, achieving your goals will be all the more satisfying. So get to it and let me know what you get out of it!

Happy developing!

Mobile Business Security

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To run any business successfully, the employees has to follow the rules and regulations in all circumstances. Only a team of sincere and loyal can ensure the success of business aside from good strategies and best practices. Of course, productivity, dedication and create ideas are also important for any business to grow and stay competitive.

Disappointed employees, sometimes, can try to ruin your enterprise by sharing your business secrets with your competitors. In the same way, some insincere employees or workers can waste time while doing their job. This can have negative impact on the productivity of your company. So, you have to keep tabs on such workers and employees. To make this task easier, you can make use of mobile phone spy apps, such as mSpy.

With a mobile spy app, you can track or monitor the activities on your employees’ mobile phones. The good news is that the tracking is done real-time and stealthily. Once you have installed the application, it will start operating in the background so as to log activities like phone calls, emails, text messages sent/received, and websites visited on the cell along with the location of the handset. The app uploads the tracking information to a remote server. All you have to do is to sign into the official site of the spy app in order to access the uploaded information.

Sales representatives and delivery personnel, for the most part, work outside of a company premises. In this case, you can install a spy app, such as mobile spy mSpy, on their cell phones in order to keep tabs on their location. This can assist you in redirecting the concerned employees or workers to a nearby location for an urgent piece of work. You can also catch work shirkers who may be killing their time wandering about. In this way, the mSpy app can augment the efficiency and response time of your employees. At the end of the day, it will up the productivity.

Often, annoyed or disappointed employees waste their time on purpose by making calls or sending text messages to their friends. Others try to damage the strength of the company by leaking company secrets and important information to other companies engaged in the same business. This is where a cell phone spy app can assist you. A spy app can easily expose the suspicious activities of the employees by tracking messages sent via SMS, email or chat. Aside from this, these apps can also let you know which numbers were dialed along with accurate date and time. You can then fire such employees to resolve the issue.

So, if you are looking for a good spy app to resolve the issues mentioned above, then you should try out mSpy cell phone, you can read more at www.mireview.com. It has all the feature you can expect in a good mobile phone tracking app.

How to hire and instruct a freelancer to develop your Android app

There are several reasons for considering hiring a programmer to develop an Android app for you.

1. Time: even if you know how to develop Android apps yourself, you may not want to spend a lot of time programming. The work can be tedious and some tasks can easily be handled by someone else. Especially if you are short on time and you want to spend it on more valuable activities.

2. You don’t know how to program. If using an online app maker doesn’t provide sufficient options to make the app the way you want it to be, then you will need to get someone who can do this for you.

3. You know how to program a little but you get stuck.

Let me explain the last scenario a little further as this is exactly what happened to me! I started out reading books about Java and the Android SDK. I had a little previous experience with HTML, JavaScript and PHP. But when I reached the point that I had to build an “XML parser” for my app I got stuck badly. I Googled and searched the forums (mainly Stack Overflow) and there sure were lots of examples but I just did not know how to proceed. I could have tried more things but then it dawned on me: what if I let a freelancer solve just this problem for me?

So, I went on oDesk and posted a job asking for help writing an XML parser for my Android app. Within a few hours I had over 30 responses. I screened all of the freelancers for cost per hour, previous experience, user ratings and the match between their skill set and my job. Then I chose two programmers to do the same job.

Here is where it became interesting: my description of the job was carefully worded. I did my best to use the right programming jargon to make sure that the contractors would immediately understand what I wanted them to do.

As it turns out, one of the pair had a much better understanding of the job than the other one.. he also took only half the time to finish it! The quality of their work, by the way, was similar.

The smarter/faster guy was a little bit more expensive per or but he was certainly with it! I have been assigning new tasks to him which he handles with ease.

For me, there are two lessons in this story. The obvious one being that it is wise to “test” your freelancers before you commit to one for a longer period of time.

The other lesson is that I was only able to explain the job and evaluate their work because I have a basic understanding of programming. This is key to being able to concisely and clearly communicate your wishes.

Even of you are not an expert (I certainly am not), it is still very useful to have some understanding of programming. Not so you can do all the work yourself; you may well have other, more important demands on your time. But knowing a little goes a long way in helping you plan supervise the work. This can prevent problems with the app itself, development delays and it helps to keep costs under control.

Happy developing/delegating!

Reasons & Advantages of Hiring a Laptop

For the sake of convenience and also for portability purpose, the computers are given the shape of laptop computers and the notebook. Though they are small in size, when compared to the desktops, there is no compromise in the technology which it posses. This is the reason which is making each and every one to prefer these small and simple laptops and notebooks. These laptops are generally used by the business people and the other professionals. It is not that they are confined to these group of people, but it only means that they are more used by these group of people. One of the other important reason which is making these laptops more preferred, is that it saves a lot of time, it can be accessed at any place and at any time. Certain people will hire the laptop rather than buying it. Certain reasons are making the Laptop Hire more useful.

Various Reasons Which is Making the Laptop Hire Useful:

Nowadays, lot many people of different professions like students, architects, media professionals, lawyers, designer and other employees are using the laptops and the notebooks by hiring them. As mentioned above, it would be a better option to hire a laptop rather than buying it. Here are some of the reason for opting the Laptop Hire.

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1) The first and the foremost reason which is making the laptop hire useful is the cost of it. All the high branded laptops and the notebooks are very costly to purchase and in order to protect the user from these heavy prices, these hiring of the laptops and the notebooks will help a lot.

2) The next important feature which is making the laptop hiring so important is the technical support provided by the rental companies. And the best part of it is that they are offered at no cost, in most cases.

3) With hiring the laptops or the notebooks, one can be free from all the expenses of its maintenance and also from the various repair expenses. Because, these laptops are handled for quite many purposes, there are chances for it to get attacked by the virus. So regular and proper maintenance service has to provided to the laptop for its proper functioning.

4) This hiring will also let the user relieve from the various expenses required for upgrading the laptops or the notebooks. Technology is changing day to day. And also, one can hire a suitable range laptop or the notebook according to their requirement. Every time it is not possible to buy the high end laptops, hence the hiring is preferred in such scenarios.

5) The duration of renting the laptop or the notebook can be flexible. Depending upon the need of the user, one can either go for short term renting the laptops or for any long term renting the laptops.

Not only the above mentioned factors. but also there are various other reasons which are making these hiring of laptops and the notebooks, a very good deal to purchase. Last but not the least, it is also important to find out a good renting company which offers these services at the best possible level.

5 aspects: Will You Upgrade Your Nexus 7 1.0 To Nexus 7 2.0?

Google Nexus 7 has been far ahead in the seven-inch tablet market since its release last year. For people yearning towards high price-performance-ratio tablets, the upcoming Nexus 2 is unquestionably one of the top candidates. But how about folks who are using Nexus 7 the first generation already? Will it make sense to spend extra money and upgrade? This post will compare Nexus 7 1 and Nexus 7 2 from 5 aspects, which may help you make a decision.

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1. Appearance

Generally, users can easily tell the new Nexus 7 from the first generation, which appears to be a bit slender and has a bigger length-to-width ratio. In addition, Nexus 7 2 is around 2mm thinner and 50g lighter than the first model, making it marginally easier to hold and carry.

As to the display of the second Nexus 7, it is indeed a lightspot to audience. The 1920 *1200 pixel resolution has made it the best eBook reader as well as video/game player by far. Follow this guide to read books on Nexus 7 if you don’t want to miss the unique reading experience Nexus 7 2 has delivered.

2. Processor, graphics and memory specs

New electric models always show advantages in tech specs, so does Nexus 7. New Nexus 7 uses a more efficient processor, Quad Core Snapdragon S4 Pro (1.5 GHz), which relatively emits less heat and uses less power compared to the previous NVIDIA Tegra 3 processor (1.2 GHz). In addition, Nexus 7 2 comes with an Adreno 320 GPU with a clock speed of 400 MHz while its predecessor comes with an NVIDIA GeForce ULP GPU clocked at 416 MHz.

From the angle of RAM, Nexus 7 2 has a double RAM of 2G than Nexus 7 the first generation, which makes it more fluent to switch between apps and proceed multi tasks. As far as the overall storage is concerned, there is no difference: 16 G, 32 G and 64 G are available for both models. No 128 G version for Nexus 7 2.

3. Cameras

That’s another aspect where the second model wins out. As an owner of Nexus 1, I always feel upset when I want to take photos on my Nexus 7. But I can’t. I can take self-shots at daytime,however there is no rear-facing camera. Actually, every time when I don’t take a camera at hand, I have to first use my phone to take photos, transfer the pics to my Nexus 7 via Bluetooth, then use my Nexus 7 to upload and share.

Fortunately, the second Nexus 7 is integrated with front-facing and rear-facing camera.A 5-MegaPixel rear camera is not excellent in the same category, but it is enough in most cases.

4. Battery

Battery is a very important factor when people consider buying an electric device. Although Nexus 7 2 uses a better processor and is likely to consume less power under the same circumstance, the first Nexus 7 is actually a notch above the successor with a 4325mAH to 3950mAH. I consent to that better processor works, but why doesn’t the new model adopt the same battery as the first one?

5. Price

The New Nexus 7 starts at a slightly higher price of $229, while the first version (16 G, WIFI) is known as $199. The 32 G version (WIFI) and 64 G version (4G, WIFI) sell at $269 and $349 respectively.

Note that Nexus 7 1.0has been officially listed as “No longer available” at Google Play store. Thereby you guys who haven’t got a tablet yet may have to choose Nexus 7 2 or another brand. Personally, I won’t buy another Nexus 7 model until the current one is too old to work properly.