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Android app development

September 4, 2011

Sorry for the long hiatus, but I was really focused on Android these past couple of months, so I had nothing useful to write about.

I do now, so here it is.

I started with the Android developers website.

While it’s really good, and you’ll still spend a lot of time reading the content there, it’s not really beginner-friendly.

The tutorials there aren’t sufficient for most tasks, I had problems with the Notepad tutorial, but I’d still recommend it to absolute beginners, it has a lot of good tips here and there.

But the most important thing on the website is the Dev guide, specially the first two articles, What is Android? and Application fundamentals.

While the first article isn’t that different than what you might read elsewhere, I suggest reading it anyway.

The second article is a must-read for everyone starting out with Android, it describes basic concepts like where the application fits in the system, and how it interacts with it.

It also discusses the basic elements of every app, like the manifest file,  Activities, Intents, Broadcast receivers, and Content providers.

Then I found the official docs to be somewhat lacking, they do discuss a lot of important topics, but not everything about Android.

I decided to look for tutorials elsewhere, specially those aimed at absolute beginners.

A friend referred me to the Android app development series from Lynda.com, they were also good, but they don’t go into much detail, they just tend to tell you how something is done, but not why it’s done that way, or if there’s another way to do the same thing the author is doing in the tutorial.

I decided to get a book, I chose Beginning Android application development, it’s around 450 pages, which means that it’s not comprehensive.

Although it doesn’t cover everything, but it’s really good for beginners, as it discusses most needed when developing Android apps.

I also found the SDK samples to be very useful, specially when coding a custom ListView.

The bottom line is, when learning a new framework, it’s best if you don’t rely on a single resource, even if comprehensive.

I wrote an article about getting started with Android app development, you’ll find it here.

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From → Android, Java

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