My Slate7 arrived today. This is HP’s venture into a 7” Android tablet. Here is a picture of the box it came in:
As well as a picture of the Slate itself:
Sorry for the quality of the JPGs I just snapped them with my phone. The device itself seems very solid. One of the first things it installed was GoogleNow, so it is definitely running some of the latest Android software. I wish I could make a longer blog post, but you know how it is when you have new technology in the house.
I have programmed on many platforms over the years, including mobile platforms like Windows mobile. I was looking at this book to bring me up to speed on Android and not spend a great deal of time on the basics of programming…
It started out with the Eclipse IDE, and that’s a good thing since if you’ve never worked with Eclipse before, you’ll need some help getting in installed correctly. I was a bit surprised it didn’t mention GIT or any other software configuration management tools, since you’ll likely need one. The Eclipse IDE can be a bit buggy and no one wants to loose work that’s been tested.
The book does briefly cover the basics of Java on Android but fortunately didn’t dwell on it for long. The book assumes a basic Java programming skills, describes the Software Development Kit (SDK), the basics of an Android application architecture and has a chapter on getting applications into the user’s hands.
It is not until chapter 5 that a real Android coding example is really mentioned.
If you are into native coding, the last chapter was about the Java Native Interface. I was not going down that route, but it appeared to be well described.
One nice aspect of this book was that it told me why something gets done and not only how to do it, by rote. There are good architectural explanations as well as code to experiment with.
I can’t say that by just using this book I’ll write the most elegant code, but it does help you understand the decisions that need to be made and aid you in choosing one that works.