Blog Archives

Landing on Wearables (part 2)

In Introduction to Wearables we had a look at some of the concepts those are the foundations of Android Wear. In this part we are going to skip completely any considerations on that and we’ll have a look at how things work underneath. In particular, we’ll have a look at how to extend existing application’s notifications and how to debug on wearables(this second part will be used for the following tutorials). In order to achieve this, we’ll start with a sample application that runs just on a handheld device and we’ll try step by step to extend it, trying to create a beautiful user experience even on a device running Android Wear. Read the rest of this entry

Introduction to Wearables (part 1)

Wearable devices are definitely one of the most exciting and coolest technologies of 2014 along with drones and smart cars. Hardware producers, software companies and even start-ups are pushing the boundaries beyond what is just being on a handheld device, struggling to open new challenges and attract new customers. Something similar has been already seen when smartphones were just at the beginning of their appearance, but this time the purposes and targets of this technology are a little bit different. It is not just a matter of keeping the user connected with the World outside but it’s more about offering him new services, getting more from/into his life. Sensors can collect data about user activities (heart rate, pedometer, burn calories, sleep hours…) allowing to know more from the user’s context and his behaviors. Embedding them on wearable devices(smartwatches, rings, betls,…) can grant almost a 24 hours coverage, attracting the user to use something that he is already used to wear but with more functionalities and fancier. Read the rest of this entry

Diabetes moves on! :) #AndroidLollipop

As you probably already know, today the Android team has released the latest version of Android (Lollipop – V21) to all the developers across the World.
This version is full of new APIs and it will definitely be an important milestone for the green platform. As Holo did a while ago, Material is going to change the way in which we’re used to use our devices enchanting animations, transitions, colors and usability. Read the rest of this entry

First time at #droidconuk :)

Hi all,
at the end of last week, after the Apps World conference, I went to the Droidcon conference here in London. It has been an event full of Android rock stars and full of good speeches like the one of Facebook, ProGuard and Gradle.

This time I don’t want to spend many words but only give some pics from that experience.

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“Just #Google it!”

I have started this post almost one month ago but I’m finding now the time to write something about one of the coolest companies in the World. I have never had the opportunity to work there but, as user and mobile developer, I have certainly noticed that in the last 15 years Google has changed the Web and in particular the life of billions of people.

Through products like its famous search engine, the Android OS, Google Plus, Chrome and dozens of other projects Google is gaining day by day more success and people that trust in its goals. If you think about that, every company tries to earn more money and to acquire more users but Google has something more: the desire to grow not only as a supremacy but as a vector of evolution for the entire World.

That’s not obvious because most of the people, especially in the IT world, tend to be more closed than opened to resources and tools sharing. Google thinks different and that’s the power and one of the aspects those have make it great!
I’m not saying that every product, every library and everything produced by this company is perfect or something that only a bunch of genius can produce but I would like to highlight the main purpose behind their business: make the life of everyone better.

Sometimes it quite difficult to maintain those kind of standards because if the other companies and competitors think in the opposite way, offering them a lot of useful tools can be quite painful. But if you consider the purpose of make the World better, that can be used to maintain alive the competition and the desire of discover new things.

As Android Developer, I’m really grateful to a company of this caliber because I have got the big opportunity to work in a world that without Google wouldn’t be so great and close at the same time. Working everyday on the mobile OS that is on the top of the edge makes me really proud and happy because, using a set of tools that’s offered for free, is giving me the possibility to do my own business but at the same time the possibility to work for something that goes beyond that.

There are a lot of big and good company all around the World but I’ll definitely continue to support Big G if they’ll continue in this way 🙂

The fall of Facebook: the rebirth of social.

FB on Nasdaq

FB on NASDAQ

The title is just a provocation because it’s not only referred to Facebook but to all those kinds of social networks which are similar to it. In particular I’m referring to all social networks which are based on the concepts of groups and closures. If you think just a few moments to the reasons that have led you to join them you’ll find a strange need to spy people which live near you. Maybe I’m exaggerating but how many times have you looked at some pictures of your neighbour or your classmate or your workmate without knowing him/her? I really don’t believe that at least one time you don’t have done it. Features like people tagging, friends tips,… have helped you to perform these kind of actions in a simply way without thinking of it. Sometimes it’s very easy to hide ourself behind a screen to view many different contents but unfortunately you end up to use these social networks only to inspect contents and other lives without contributing to the real sense of Social.

In my opinion social networks like Facebook, Google+,… will not have much future because they only move the concept of friendship circles into them without offering features related to real needs of people. They work only as people’s boxes leaving them the possibility to choose what kind of box to create into them: and this is the failure of the system. In this way they split two times their user base loosing great opportunities.

I think that we can consider some important notices/considerations of the recent moments to prove that this kind of social manner will be a complete failure:

  • Facebook acquires Instagram for $1 billion
  • Facebook on NASDAQ: is glorious as everyone expected?
  • Google+: is it different from Facebook or just same box with different presentation-logic layer?
  • What are the difference in Twitter, Instagram or Foursquare?

In the last month Facebook has acquired the “new” social platform Instagram. Someone have said “this is a moved to bring the Mark Zuckerberg creation to the Chinese world” but in my opinion it’s is an investment in a network that can really bring the concept of social to the extreme level. On Instagram you receive many good feedbacks on your photos without reducing your perspectives only to small boxes and increasing your sense of satisfaction. If you think to the American NASDAQ, Facebook is entered with a great value for every stock quote but loosing many points in just some days. Actually its value is increased (3.22%) but I think that in the next month it will decrease again. The Instagram purchase will be a good choice to improve Facebook service and at the same time the interst of many user. On the other hand if you consider Big G with its social network you’ll find a service similar to Facebook but that force you to migrate to another platform. This is boring and I don’t believe that it’ll be massively used. I have to admit that Google+ is very well integrated with other Google services but it’s not enough to be innovative. So if you consider other social platform like Twitter, Linkedin, Foursquare, Grooveshark… you have to understand that their power states into a single great box, not in just many small realities, and that they work in a single field that involves thousand and thousand of people. I hope this not seems cynical but this is what I am seeing in this Wide World Web.

As developer I think that all kind of applications and systems (except for low level ones) have to include and support social features, the most used of the moment, because in this way they can interact with an immense user base, granting themself more visibility and popularity.

What do you think? Am I a black dolly that thinks only strange things? 😛