One of the reasons posting to scottyab blog as slowed to near halt is because I’ve been involved in the organising of the South west’s first mobile meetup group. My friend and colleague swmobile-temp-logoTom Spencer is chairing the group and I’m co-organising. We took over the group that initially had about ~50 members but didn’t actually have a meetup. The main aim of the group is to arrange face to face meetups and networking for mobile developers and designers .

Why so this?

  • We love mobile! and enjoy taking to others that share the same passion
  • We want to learn more
  • Sick of all the other meetups being based in London

So join the meetup group if you are interested in meeting up –

Invited to talk at the Mobile 360 live conference –

UPDATE: event was cancelled 🙁

Android is based on openiness and the development community has embraced this ideal and provided numerous solutions to common problems just waiting to be plugged in. This session focuses on the features of some of the best and freely available resources the community has to offer. You will learn how easy it is to integrate and utilise these libraries in to your application, with code examples, so you can write less and do more.

In depth look at:

  • Android query, a light-weight library for doing asynchronous tasks and manipulating UI elements in Android. By Peter Liu.
  • Actionbar Sherlock an extension of the Android compatibility library designed to facilitate the use of the action bar design pattern across all versions of Android. By Jake Wharton.
  • Ignition a support library containing UI components, diagnostic helpers and AspectJ based location finder. By Matthias Kappler and Stefano Dacchille.
  • Commons Ware – Various library and utility projects created by Mark Murphy.

The libraries demonstrated are commerically friendly Apache License 2.0.



Kindle fireFinally the new Kindle ‘Fire’ was announced yesterday with much promise for content and mass market pricing. As a consumer I’m really excited about an android tablet at that price with the potential to sell millions.

As a Android developer I’m still stoked ,  true it’s a highly customised version of Android (which i’m coining the phrase “Amzoid”) and which api level or specific system features are still unconfirmed (based on 2.1 I hear rumoured). An app approval process to boot!

So my life just got more complicated but I see it as an challenge.  The same as I see the current fragmentation issues; it being a developer challenge rather than an issue for customer and businesses.

My biggest questions to Amazon are

a) When can we get the great cloud based music and video player’s in the UK?!

b) When can UK devs get hold of one?

I got together with Sarah at Mubaloo and wrote a few articles and they got published, yay! check them out: [be prepared for the big head shot :S ] [extra points for those who spot the misspelling of Bown ;)]

Just encase anyone else was curious as me about gambling on Android marketplace or the alternatives.

Gambling is not permitted on the Android marketplace. Quote from the t&c‘s  “Gambling: We don’t allow content or services that facilitate online gambling, including but not limited to, online casinos, sports betting and lotteries.” –

Alternative app stores:

  • Vodafone and Orange have their own Android app stores, however Vodafone note that can’t be “Gambling-related”, confident Orange will be the same.
  • Amazon app store is US only

So it looks as if getjar is the only viable app store at the moment that allows gambling apps in addition to distributing directly (which you can do with Android). For example client could have the application .apk downloadable from their website.

Hope this saves someone time when looking it up.

Managed to make it in to Android Magazine issue 3 with an interview I did about Sony/Amazon Android tablets. Check out page 7, here’s a PDF scan of the article that someone else scanned in [honest].

If you haven’t read the magazine yet it’s well worth checking out, it’s not just for geeks like me 😉

Updated with correct cover image and link to info

Developing  Android on Ubuntu? here’s how to define your JAVA HOME and PATH:

What you’ll need:

  • Path to your Java installation
  • Path to your Android SDK installation
  • admin password

On windows you’d edit your environment variables, on linux you edit the .bashrc file.

Run this command:
sudo gedit $HOME/.bashrc

prompted for admin password.

Add the following lines to your .bashrc. Please ensure where you installed the Java libraries and your android sdk. The below reflects default installation directories.

export JAVA_HOME=”/usr/lib/jvm/java-6-sun-;”
export PATH=$PATH:$JAVA_HOME/bin
export PATH=$PATH:$HOME”/android-sdk-linux_86/platform-tools”

Save file.

Run this command to reload your .bashrc:
source ~/.bashrc

Test by typing adb version
You should get something like
Android Debug Bridge version 1.0.26

Upodate: this is now fixed in ADT r11. Kudos to ADT team.
After refactoring Activity name from MyContactDetailsPage to ContactDetailsPage I spend a age trying to figure out why I suddenly started getting ActivityNotFoundExceptions.
Manifest before:
<activity android:name=”.contacts.MyContactDetailsPage”
android:configChanges=”locale” />
Manifest after:
<activity android:name=”contacts.ContactDetailsPage”
android:configChanges=”locale” />
Looks the same right? or at least the activity name has renamed, yay, but however Eclispe refactor has missed the dot prefix, so Android couldn’t find the activity, hence the exception. This drove me crazy for a good half an hour, I didn’t notice the missing dot. I guess its a good reason to use fully qualified package names when defining activities.+
04-28 11:39:19.623: ERROR/AndroidRuntime(28696): FATAL EXCEPTION: main
04-28 11:39:19.623: ERROR/AndroidRuntime(28696): android.content.ActivityNotFoundException: Unable to find explicit activity class {}; have you declared this activity in your AndroidManifest.xml?
04-28 11:39:19.623: ERROR/AndroidRuntime(28696):     at
04-28 11:39:19.623: ERROR/AndroidRuntime(28696):     at
04-28 11:39:19.623: ERROR/AndroidRuntime(28696):     at

Encase anyone else is also having issues with eclipse or STS crashing or randomly closing on ubuntu? try running the latest official Sun JDK (instead of openJDK) is in Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Official Partner Repository Thanks to the guys at webup8 for how to enable. There’s also a good stackoverflow question here.

The error i was getting…

# A fatal error has been detected by the Java Runtime Environment:
#  SIGSEGV (0xb) at pc=0xb53d1635, pid=3933, tid=1804258160
# JRE version: 6.0_20-b20
# Java VM: OpenJDK Server VM (19.0-b09 mixed mode linux-x86 )
# Derivative: IcedTea6 1.9.7
# Distribution: Ubuntu 10.10, package 6b20-1.9.7-0ubuntu1
# Problematic frame:
# J;Lcom/android/dx/rop/type/TypeList;Lcom/android/dx/rop/cst/Constant;)Lcom/android/dx/rop/code/Rop;
# If you would like to submit a bug report, please include
# instructions how to reproduce the bug and visit:

## A fatal error has been detected by the Java Runtime Environment:##  SIGSEGV (0xb) at pc=0xb53d1635, pid=3933, tid=1804258160## JRE version: 6.0_20-b20# Java VM: OpenJDK Server VM (19.0-b09 mixed mode linux-x86 )# Derivative: IcedTea6 1.9.7# Distribution: Ubuntu 10.10, package 6b20-1.9.7-0ubuntu1# Problematic frame:# J;Lcom/android/dx/rop/type/TypeList;Lcom/android/dx/rop/cst/Constant;)Lcom/android/dx/rop/code/Rop;## If you would like to submit a bug report, please include# instructions how to reproduce the bug and visit:#