Blog Archives

#London Chapter 4: My Propeller

I’m a bit late with my this but it has been my 4th “Londonversary” at the beginning of the month. It’s getting harder and harder to write something because so many things happen every day and I have always less and less time for my blog.
The truth is.. I’m getting probably older and I’ve even forgotten having a page somewhere around the web 😀

This has been a damn intense and fast paced year.
I had the same feeling in the past, but this time I can guarantee it was even too much for me. Probably, this post is not even for you but just to make me realize how things happen so fast and so many all at once even when you cannot control them.

Work

I tend to really like what I do, so don’t take this “section” as a negative bit of this year.
It’s what probably I’ve been really invested in for the the last years but I’m getting better also at other stuff 😛

Since the beginning of my journey at Bloomberg, I had a chance to work on a new Android app which is part of what the company offers as complimentary service to its customers. As usual, there were some hard times at the beginning because I had to understand how things were working but I managed to find my space and perform a lot of improvements those were not affecting just me but the entire ecosystem we were trying to build. I also had a chance to interview tons of people and for the first time in my life do some volunteering teaching math to kids(at least I tried haha).

It finally came the time to move on. I wasn’t really planning to change for any other job but something really big this summer came. For a lot of people this would be just a chance to work for the biggest social network in the world, adding a nice stamp on their CV. Honestly, while this can be true, I don’t really give a fuck about my CV and if you think like this is gonna be the perfect recipe for failure.
For me this is all about learning a lot of new things, working with the most skilled people in the World and tackling problems that any other company cannot even dream to have.
Even if it’s just the beginning, It’s really an honour working at Facebook and trying to strive towards the company’s mission.

Travel/Misc

In March, my girlfriend and I moved to a different flat and we had crazy time packing all our things and getting rid of all that crap people cumulate in years(someone was right.. garbage collection has few tiny little drawbacks).
Around the same period, I went for the first time in my life to Sicily with my friend Kfir and it was absolutely awesome. It was still to early to have a swim in the sea but it’s definitely a place where I’d like to go back again.

In May, I had a chance to go for the second time in my life to Google I/O. The conference was nothing crazy and not really well organized but I had really good time with chaps from Badoo, Deliveroo and many other companies.  I also had a chance to meet Vincenzo and Emilio from SmartLauncher, a really cool mobile company from a city call Manfredonia which is definitely in my todo list in the place to visit.

In June, my girlfriend and I went to Copenhagen for the third time and it was awesome.
The girl that was hosting us through Airbnb left us a couple of tickets for Tivoli and it was great to go there even if it’s such a touristic place 😀

In July, taking advantage of a friend’s wedding, we finally had a real holiday in Portugal. It was my first long road trip and it was awesome to see everyday different cities, cultures and traditions. If you haven’t visit the country, I’d definitely recommend give it a chance and your holidays will definitely be great ones.

In September I spent some time back in my hometown with my family and few friends.
It was awesome to see them again after a long while. Sometimes I feel kind of sad because I cannot play cards or have a coffee with my grandma, watching my grandpa still working from 6am, driving with my father, seeing my brother and old friends, cooking with my mother, … whenever I want.
On the other side, staying far from home and trying to achieve better and better results gets rewarded every time I see their eyes: that sense of admiration and happiness when they see me and what I achieve doesn’t have a price. This is my propeller.

In November, I went to Menlo Park CA for my Bootcamp and I had two awesome weeks seeing Facebook even closer and leaving a bit the American Dream. I honestly don’t know if I’d like to live in California but as of Today and looking at past experiences… you never know what future is preparing for you.

Last but not least, I still have to go back home for Chrismukkah(XMas).

I think I’ve never travelled so many times in my life in a year both for work and leisure.

Merry XMas to everyone 🙂
Simone

Curious/fun facts

  • My lemon tree looks the same as probably one year go
  • My last 3 jobs last 1 year and 3 months (cit. LinkedIn)
  • The number of hours it took me to prepare for Facebook interviews was directly proportional to the number of wine glasses I had this year. The only difference is that interviews had an end but wine hadn’t 😀
  • In California, even if you have five/six lanes each side in the highway, you’ll still get stuck somewhere with your car

 

#London Chapter 3: Be ambitious! Be bold!

Time flies when you are having fun and apparently today it’s my 3rd London anniversary 🙂
I was just reading few minutes ago the second chapter of my adventure in the United Kingdom and I’m really surprised to see how many things have changed during the last year.

Driven by my dream of getting better and better, I tried to hit most of the targets for this year.

In January, I have finished my Mobile Cloud Computing specialisation on Coursera and my project was also awarded with a tablet that my mum has definitely appreciated.

The following months have been really intense and plenty of events that is better to summarise in just few points:

Yesterday, I also started a Machine Learning course that will try to keep me busy till to the end of February.

I don’t know why… but I still feel that I haven’t done enough things during this 2015. I can justify this, saying that otherwise I wouldn’t know what to do next year… even if I have already got something in mind 😉

After a long period of silence on my blog, I hope that all my achievements have turned on you the desire of striving always for something more. Someone would say YOLO(you live only once) and I definitely agree with that: life is to short to let it fly away.

See you at the next time 🙂

Cheers,
Simone

Pimp my Wear (part 4)

In Colonizing Wearables, after a first attempt of running the existing handheld version of the Books application on a smartwatch, we ended up creating a simple Android Wear module that displays the number of available book entries. This has been done not only to discover more about Android Wear, but because a handheld app should not be just ported to a wearable device. During our journey, we have introduced few of the new UI components offered by the wear support library. Among them, WatchViewStub has allowed us to handle different screen shapes, figuring out at runtime the type of display. We also had a chance to understand the reason why and how the wearable module has to be included into the handheld build. Therefore, the goal of this part is to evolve the previous module into something that can be easily used by user and that tries to follow as much as possible the android wear design patterns.

Read the rest of this entry

Colonizing Wearables (part 3)

In Landing on Wearables we have approached wearables devices extending our existing app’s notifications and explaining briefly how to bind them to our development machine for debugging purposes. Now it is time to study more in deep what we can achieve directly on a device running Android Wear, understanding the constraints and the possibilities that the platform introduces. We will continue to keep as reference the Books application previously developed and we will try to create an Android Wear module.

Read the rest of this entry

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

[Story Of My Life] London Chapter Two

It looks like that Today it’s my second year anniversary here in London 🙂
I want definitely to be a lot more concise than the past year but at the same time I want to write something that will remain as stone in the path of my life. Read the rest of this entry

One year in #London, just the first chapter of a new book.

It has been one year since I left Italy, my friends and the warm nest of a family that never stops loving you.

Just this morning I received an email from my father who was asking me if I’m celebrating this wonderful day. I think that the biggest celebration is to be here; it doesn’t matter if it’s London, Paris, NY,… but the important fact is that I’m still here, fighting day by day for all those things that I like to do. In just one year a lot of things have changed in my mind, in my life and in my job. New horizons, goals and people have started to be part of this new life but at the same time all the “old” important ones have continued to follow me and support all my choices. 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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MyNextBus #London

not_a_num_co_ukIf you have to come here in London for a huge bier or for an holiday you cannot miss to use that’s new App. Born to be simple, easy to use and funny, MyNextBus London by NotANum will allow you to search every bus in London!

After a minimal blue splash will have a list of all closest bus stops around you ordered by distance. If you tap on of those entry you’ll access to the sublist of all bus those are arriving or those will arrive in some minutes.

…that’s all! Simple! Fast… and without any complications when you are in a hurry! 🙂

This is the first version but we’ll definitely improve it with some new useful features!

 

MyNextBus London

 
Enjoy now on GooglePlay

P.S.: I’m pretty sure that in some weeks it’ll be available for the iOS platform too! 😉

The scent of frenzy into a new life: #London