Saturday, February 19, 2011

I built my first Android app for my kiddos

I love Android!

One of the main reasons I like Android vs. the iPad/iPhone's iOS operating system is the freedom of choice. You can customize your Android phone above and beyond the original factory settings.

You can install custom ROMs, improve on the software, natively watch Flash videos and animations, and generally just have the ability to use the hardware that you bought anyway you want to...but you can also create your own apps!

How to create your own Android apps!

It doesn't take that much know how, and I wanted to entertain my kids a little bit with some of their favorite cartoon characters.

So in this app you can poke several characters from Cars, Barbie, Dora, and Veggie Tales. It plays small snippets of video that I just pulled out of YouTube and created a local copy so it doesn't even need any data connection (also why it's 9mb in size!).

This took me one morning to build and most of that time was setting up Java SDK and downloading Samsung Galaxy Tab's driver to make my PC work in USB debugging mode for Windows 7 (64-bit). After all of that was done, I was able to easily build the app using Google's Block Builder and App Inventor platform.

This type of stuff is encouraging -- because it basically allows novices like me to be able to create very easy apps. If one had the time to study and do reference work, you could really do some amazing apps for your Android phone or tablet...

At any rate, if you want to see this app, check it out here:

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