android

How to tackle Material Design

Great short article, the most important thing in it is explaining what guidelines are and that guidelines are there to help you, not to force you.

#ftl #link #materialdesign #android

Originally shared by +Matias Duarte

Awesome post by Max Weiner of Pocket - I'm so excited to see how many developers are successfully adopting Material!

How to Not Freak Out About Material Design
A sane approach to making your app Material

Most Popular Google Play App Categories 2014

This is not your standard chart based on app numbers per categories. This chart is based on data from 342.000 Apps isntalled on over 100.000 Devices recorded from April-October 2014. This gives a better overview on what on how popular a category is with smartphone users - not just how popular it is with developers. If you go by lists from Appbrain or App Annie you might think that Business, Photography and Social are hot categories ... but they are not or even worse, they have plenty of downloads, but only from  a few apps. Trying to push an app in these categories might be very difficult. I did not lump Games into one value here to give the full picture - but all game categories combined is about 50% larger then Tools, the single most popular app category. And here is the list:

  1. TOOLS
  2. PERSONALIZATION
  3. EDUCATION
  4. ENTERTAINMENT
  5. LIFESTYLE
  6. BOOKS AND REFERENCE
  7. TRAVEL AND LOCAL
  8. GAME,PUZZLE
  9. NEWS AND MAGAZINES
  10. MUSIC AND AUDIO
  11. PRODUCTIVITY
  12. GAME,CASUAL
  13. BUSINESS
  14. GAME,ARCADE
  15. FINANCE
  16. APPLICATION,SPORTS
  17. COMMUNICATION
  18. HEALTH AND FITNESS
  19. SOCIAL
  20. TRANSPORTATION
  21. SHOPPING
  22. MEDIA AND VIDEO
  23. PHOTOGRAPHY
  24. MEDICAL
  25. GAME,ACTION
  26. GAME,CARD
  27. GAME,RACING
  28. GAME,SPORTS
  29. APPLICATION,WEATHER
  30. GAME,EDUCATIONAL
  31. GAME,SIMULATION
  32. GAME,FAMILY
  33. GAME,ADVENTURE
  34. GAME,STRATEGY
  35. LIBRARIES AND DEMO
  36. GAME,TRIVIA
  37. GAME,CASINO
  38. GAME,ROLE PLAYING
  39. GAME,BOARD
  40. GAME,WORD
  41. COMICS
  42. GAME,MUSIC

Generate Android Assets with new Photoshop CC Extract Tool

The newest Photoshop CC 2014 update brings a new tool for Android and iOS Developers to extract the assets you need in the various screen resolutions. Since Adobe is always leaning towards iOS/Apple than Android the preset settings are geared toward iOS. Here is the quick 6 step workflow to make it work for Android.

  1. Create your Assets for the highest resolution (xxhdpi right now) and rename all the layers to the filenames you want to give. Make sure that all you layers are vector based or converted to smart-objects extracte_assets_step1
  2. Resize your document to mdpi = 33% (if you start resolution was xxhdpi) extracte_assets_step2
  3. Then, choose File > Extract Assets (or use the keyboard shortcut Cmd + Option + Shift + W (Mac) | Ctrl + Alt + Shift + W (Win). Go into Settings and set the resolutions like this extracte_assets_step3 extracte_assets_step3b
  4. Extract the assets by clicking extract extracte_assets_step4
  5. Go into the folder with the assets and create a drawable-mdpi folder
  6. Move the mdpi assets in the root of the folder to the drawable-mdpi folder extracte_assets_step5

Android Webview Complex Table Problems solved

Android Webviews are a great way to display content from a website. So most websites that have a companion app use webviews to show the comment. And most of the time everything will work just fine - but if you use advanced table layouts you might encounter a problems.

The culprit is .setLayoutAlgorithm(LayoutAlgorithm.SINGLE_COLUMN);

Normal tables don't seem to be affected by this setting, but complex tables using scope="row" or scope="col" or both. To fix this just replace the LayoutAlgorithm to normal.

Example:  mMessageContentView.getSettings().setLayoutAlgorithm(LayoutAlgorithm.NORMAL);

Thanks to Stackoverflow: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/14624841/webview-is-not-displaying-table-properly-in-4-0-in-android

A great lesson in adding value - not just features

A great lesson in adding value - not just featuresI'm a almost fanatic Evernote user. Since I decided that all my notes are going into one place - and one place only - I actually find stuff.Apart from that I can only highly recommend a companion app from Evernote - Evernote Food.I'm a foodie and I love talking about my meals with friends and my partner. With this I can also show them the meals. I can take pictures, add a place and go back later to get inspired or just to remember things like: Where did we go to eat on our last anniversary.The new Version adds even more layers like recipe exploration and the automated recipe collection from your Evernote Account. Exactly - you don't have to go through your library and tag the old notes - they find out for you. What a great function. Isn't that great - and by the way - you don't have to go Premium to use this companion apps like other services do.So go ahead and start collecting great food. #app   #evernote   #functionality Link: http://blog.evernote.com/2013/04/29/evernote-food-2-0-for-android-is-here/

Content aware photo retouching on your Android device

Are you already caught in the Instagram craze? Do you want to edit your photos before enhancing them with Instagram? Why not use one of the proposed Apps by Instagram themselves. The most interesting one is the content aware retouching App called TouchRetouch. Give it a try.

#instagram #android #photography #retouching #app

Embedded Link

Photo Tips: Android Photography Applications We’ve researched applications available for Android that can help you enhance and improve your photographs. Here are a few apps for simple and quick image editing to get you started! Photo Editing For...

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Project Google Glass - everybody mocks it, so it will happen

The augmented reality glasses from Google have made waves in  a sense that everyone is mocking them - which means that they are on the right path. Just think about all the bluetooth guys talking to the air or everybody with  headphones on - they are normal today but have been mocked before. Reshared post from +Project Glass

We think technology should work for you—to be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don’t.

A group of us from Google[x] started Project Glass to build this kind of technology, one that helps you explore and share your world, putting you back in the moment. We’re sharing this information now because we want to start a conversation and learn from your valuable input. So we took a few design photos to show what this technology could look like and created a video to demonstrate what it might enable you to do.

Please follow along as we share some of our ideas and stories. We’d love to hear yours, too. What would you like to see from Project Glass?

+Babak Parviz +Steve Lee +Sebastian Thrun

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6500 Plus Ones in a couple of hours - welcome Instagram for Android

The Gorilla has landed and all social media outlets will be dominated by Instagram for the next few hours, days, weeks. Instagram shows that you can have instant success in Google Play if you have already a brand, and even if there are enough similar apps.

It also shows that you can get thousands of prositive reviews even if you don't optimize the experience for Android - or do we see some market manipulation here?

What i need now is a way to filter my Google+, Twitter and RSS feed to avoid to see hundreds of the same posts. Any suggestions?

#android #instagram #photography #branding

Embedded Link

Instagram Instagram – A beautiful way to share your world. It's fast, free and fun! 

 Instagram – A beautiful way to share your world. It's fast, free and fun!

Pick from ...

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Gmail Tap, or how even old technology can look like a innovation

I like Google's April Fools Day jokes. There are many and they are often not so easy too spot. I like this one especially because it pranks Apple's presentation videos and how Apple tries to upsell small innovations with limited features as the holy grail of simplicity.

"A dash and a dot, to communicate with the world, what could be easier"

Right, so have a good one and start improving your morse skills right now.

PS: It's not a complete aprilfools - you can download the Keyboard for your Android here http://goo.gl/IZN16

#satire #aprilfools #google #gmail #android

Reshared post from +Gmail

Tap into the future of productivity with Gmail Tap for Android and iOS. Double your typing speed with this revolutionary new keyboard. #gmailtap

http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/introducing-gmail-tap.html

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Finally an easy way to get Kindle Format E-Books on your Android Tablet

I like it that e-book publishers offer their books in multiple formats. A Book Apart for example offers also the Kindle Format. Nice, but if you just used the Kindle Apps on iPhone and Android you had no way to use these files. Now you can - the updated Android App can access files you send to it via email (or the sent to Kindle App).

Great, I'm just wondering what took them so long.

#amazon #kindle #android #workflow

Embedded Link

Amazon's Kindle App For Android Gets Updated To Support Kindle Format 8, Cloud Backup Of Email-To-Kindle Files Amazon updated their Kindle app for Android today, bringing about two changes that add a significant amount of functionality to the app. Perhaps the most... by Liam Spradlin in Applications, News

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Combine Gaming and Charity

I like to game sometimes, on my Android, but also on my PCs, so the Humble Bundle is always a great fit as it gives you not only nice games, but it also helps a charitable cause. It's for Android, but not only as PC, Mac, Linux and Steam Downloads are available.

Set your own price and play :)

PS: They also have a nice HumbleBundle App now that helps you with updates - a sort of separate App store - very much appreciated.

#gaming #android #steam #charity

Embedded Link

The Humble Bundle for Android 2 (pay what you want and help charity) Pay whatever you want and get instant access to five epic games: Zen Bound 2, Avadon: The Black Fortress, Cogs, Canabalt, and Swords & Soldiers -- all while supporting vital charities. Each game i...

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Help me Translate my How Much Euro App

I would like to make my free Sales Tax aware currency convertet "How much Euro?" available in more languages. So please help me make this possible. I'm looking for translations of the in App copy and the description used in the AppStore and Google Play. If you speak Bulgarian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, French, Greek, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Spanish please spare 10 minutes and contribute.

http://www.getlocalization.com/howmucheuro/

I use the free service Getlocalization.com as I wanted to test it out and it looks promising. They also provide integration with Github, but I have to test that out a little further.

Thank you in advance.

How much Euro? Mobile App

  How much Euro? is the first sales tax aware currency converter. In the US and Canada prices shown in stores are mostly without sales tax. This messes up the result of any normal currency converter.

Not "How much Euro?", which calculates the tax and adds it before converting dollars to euros. This helps travellers, exchange students and other visitors to the US and Canada to understand quickly how much an item costs in Euro just like they are used to in their home country.

If you would like to stay up to date with the latest news about this App:

[one_half]

JUST TOUCH NO KEYBOARD

  • Easy enter Dollar amount - just swipe right or left - result updates instantaneously

[/one_half]

[one_half_last]

WHAT IS THE REAL COST

  • Shows Euro amounts with and without tax
  • Up to date exchange rates through online update
  • App stores latest Dollar amount

[/one_half_last]

[one_half]

EASY SETTINGS

  • US & Canadian Dollar supported
  • Shake your phone to reset Dollar amount
  • Easily adjust to the local sales tax by swiping

[/one_half]

[one_half_last]

USE IT OFFLINE

  • Stores the last updated rates
  • Convert prices without internet access

[/one_half_last]

[one_third]

Android

Download "How much Euro?" on Google Play [/one_third]

[one_third]

iOS/iPhone/iPad

Coming Spring 2012 [/one_third]

[one_third_last]

Windows Phone

[button color=grey url=/contact] Request it[/button]

[/one_third_last]

[alert color=green]Help me Translate this App - [button color=grey url=http://www.getlocalization.com/howmucheuro] Start now [/button][/alert]

 

How much Euro? My first App ... and the excitement is back

It's done, my first Android App has been submitted to the Android Marketplace. I must admit that I'm proud of myself - it's the first time in years, that I have breached into a new "medium". By that I mean, that I feel the rush to have published something in a way I have never done before, much like the first time I uploaded a website to a server back in 1996, or when my first "Hello World!" was printed on the screen with my C64.

I also felt the same when I saw the first leaflet I designed lying on a counter in a bar - this "I did that, it's my creation and others use it actually".

That someone "uses" something I created is probably the most important part and the most exciting. In all my work, may it be design or development I always try to make something useful (I'm not against beauty, but a chair on which you cannot sit is pointless to me).

An App (native or on the web) is therefore the perfect medium for a "digital product designer" - someone who lives on the bridge between design and development. It contains not only design elements, but usability, development challenges and real world interaction (sometimes). People do not just "visit", they "use" the application.

This excitement will probably fade over time, but I try to keep this excitement alive by learning new stuff all the time. It is the excitement that keeps me searching for new challenges.

How about you, are you still exited about your work? How do you keep the passion for it going?

PS: Here is the link to Google Play

https://market.android.com/details?id=bz.frankie.howmucheuro

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Beyond the big four in Google Music - Self publishing Music tracks

As usual the small details count and the self publishing aspect for independent artists is a big deal. If you are not part of the publishing associations you are cut out of airplay revenue etc, but you also give up most of your rights to publish the music yourself - it's not only the media companies hurting artists.

Behind the scenes of the new Android Standard Font Roboto

The font was designed for smartphone screens, but I will try it out for other screen designs as well - the screen density is similar. #font #android #opensource #roboto

Reshared post from +Matias Duarte

Hello Roboto When we announced Ice Cream Sandwich I also got a chance to introduce Android’s new typeface Roboto. Today I’d like to talk about how Roboto was born — why we decided to create it, and the design choices we made in the process.

Why replace Droid? Droid is a great font family which served Android well over the years, but it was designed and optimized for screens that were much lower in pixel density than today’s HD displays. To be legible at smaller sizes, and to avoid turning to anti-aliased grey mush, the letter forms had to be quite dramatic. They had a tall x-height and a very regular rhythm so that they snapped to the pixel grid crisply. The bold variant was significantly wider than the regular text, because when a letter’s vertical strokes are one pixel thick, the only way to be bold is to double! It’s no surprise that on high rez screens, and at larger more dramatic headline sizes, Droid struggled to achieve both the openness and information density we wanted in Ice Cream Sandwich.

What were we looking for? Most important was to create something that matched our ambitious design goals for Ice Cream Sandwich. Emotionally we wanted Ice Cream Sandwich to enchant you, to be attractive and eye-catching. Our new typeface had to be modern, crisp, and structured to match our new emphasis on open layouts and rigid grid alignments, but also friendly and approachable to make Android appealing, and a little bit more human.

Interactive display is a new and still evolving medium and what it demands from type design is subtly and uniquely different from print. We wanted to take maximum advantage of ultra high density screens like that of Galaxy Nexus, yet still be crisp and legible on lower resolution displays like that of Nexus S. Because Roboto would be used for the UI we wanted to make the bold very similar to the metrics of the regular weight, so that text could gracefully switch from bold to regular (like when you read emails in your inbox). We also wanted to include tabular figures (numbers that are all the same width) so we could display times, dates and other counters without having the characters jump around.

Finally we wanted Roboto to make a design statement in and of itself, in the same way that we wanted every screen on the device to have a strong and unique design point of view. Yet, just like the rest of the UI, Roboto is ultimately a medium for your content. We wanted Roboto to have a design character that made it recognizable, to be distinctive when you were paying attention, but never be overbearing or distracting.

How did we make it? We realized early on that we needed something with a strong geometric backbone to hold up to our new open “Magazine UI” layouts. When we got rid of the boxes and bevels, dividers and other structural crutches, the more humanist fonts of our legacy felt uncomfortable and a little chaotic. Naturally we looked at some of the circle based geometrics like Avenir and Futura, but they’re very demanding in the rhythm of their metrics and ultimately were a little too soft for the crisp corners that we were using in the UI. The breakthrough came quickly when we settled on a straight sided grotesk.

Roboto’s straight sided capitals and distinctive racetrack-shaped rounded letters turned out to be perfect for our needs in a system font. It is space efficient and and holds its own for the short terse messages that are so common in UI. It has a high degree of compatibility with legacy designs created for Droid, because in almost all cases the same size Roboto sets in the same amount of space. Yet because of Roboto’s more structured forms we can actually set it smaller and with tighter line spacing, allowing us to put more information on the screen without inducing claustrophobia.

One of the potential drawbacks of a grotesk font is that the structured evenness of the type can make it more difficult to read. We started by softening up the lower case letters, and then experimented with opening up some of the glyphs to get a more diverse rhythm. We found that by adding a little more diversity to the lower case the font become more readable. In particular, we opened up the ‘e’ and ‘g’ while keeping the ‘a’, ‘c’ and ‘s’ characters closed. The rhythm starts to compare more to book types and makes for really nice reading over longer spans of text.

In the end we were iterating ceaselessly on minor details of the letters, extending the character set to Greek and Cyrillic, and tweaking the rendering so that Roboto would look just as good at all sizes and resolutions. In fact our work is not yet done as we continue to extend the character set and begin to hint Roboto so it works as well on computers as it does on Android devices. Still, I’m terrifically proud of the work the team and our lead typographer did in an ludicrously short amount of time. Roboto is a new foundation for Android and the team really deserves kudos for their accomplishment.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this little ‘behind the scenes’ peek at Android’s evolution. I had fun writing it, so let me know if you’d be interested in hearing more.

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