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My journey to my first Android app – Ubuntu 8.04 setup

So here is my first post of many on the development process of my app on Android.  First comes the environment, then comes JAVA.  I finally had couple of hours free to check out the Android SDK. Here is what I found out when setting up the environment on Hardy (8.04):

Android SDK

Obviously the first thing you will need to do is sign up as a developer at Android’s site: http://code.google.com/android/.  Um, yeah since I am a Google peasant, that was not really a big deal (kind of sad how much of my life is under Google’s control).  Like everything else from Google, the documentation is ridiculous.  No need to repeat it here, just unzip the package and put it where you develop all your apps.   Unlike the iPhone SDK, I can put this bad boy on any OS.  I like that.

Eclipse

I use vi for everything but since JAVA is new to me, I would like any help I can get.  Since it seems Eclipse is the defacto standard for JAVA development, it looks like I need to get this tool on my lappy.  I was not paying attention at the version of the deb package for Eclipse on Hardy.  Synaptic loads 3.2 but when you try to grab the Android development tools, you will notice that you are required to install the Web Platform Tools for Eclipse and sadly the WPT 3.0.2 does not play well with Eclipse 3.2.  Not really a problem since Eclipse is a java app in of itself. Just make sure you have the latest version of java installed on your distro.  I personally like to keep everything under one vendor, so I stayed on the SUN side of things:

sudo apt-get install sun-java6-bin

Get rid of what Synaptic dumped on your system with regards to Eclipse then head over to Eclipse’s site and grab the latest version of the IDE (Ganymede).  If I were you, grab the distro for Java EE, it has WTP as part of it’s plugin suite (one less thing you need to do).  Grab the Android plugin from within Eclipse and you are all set to build your first project.

Emulator

When running the emulator, try out the G1 skin from Jeffry Sharkey.  It gives your test app a shot of reality from an actual Android phone.  Awesome Work Mr. Sharkey.

With the exception of Eclipse, installing the SDK was painless.  Next up will be the coding and debugging, which will mean time spent learning a new code base.  Not too bad, I mean seriously how hard can it be to code in JAVA right?  Muhahahaha!

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