Blog Archives

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

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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 ūüôā

The scent of frenzy into a new life: #London

Taking pics easily with #WeddingSnap

On 17th September I have taken part into WeddingSnap project as Android consultant and developer. At first, I was so confused and astonished by the idea that a guest takes pictures with his phone at a wedding. But after a few days I have noticed that this is a great idea! Far from Italian traditions, catching pics socially is a great thing because it increases and amplifies the sense of friendship and closeness between people. In fact, if you consider that we are talking about unforgettable and precious moments you’ll certain understand that the bride and groom want all best things in their precious day.

15 years ago we were used to take pictures through simple cameras but now, in an era governed by most famous social networks and technologies, we are using smartphones more and more. WeddingSnap tries to collect these special moments merging wedding’s pictures into shared album, avoiding¬† useless tricks to share pics between guests. Through this idea all people involved in a wedding can take and share a lot of photo shoots without caring of number limits and distribuition of them.

In just one month the Android app is grown quickly, giving to this project a great contribuition. In particular, if you decide to take a look on GooglePlay, you’ll find these new features:

  • Off-line mode: you can collect pictures without connection and upload them in another moment
  • Share: you were so marvellous at your friend wedding! Why not share that shoot on Facebook or Twitter?
  • Get it! now you can download on your phone pictures shared by other guests!
  • Fastness and responsiveness: old version of WS were too slow… and now it looks very fast!
  • Delete it! Don’t worry if you have upload the worst picture of the Wedding!
  • Several improvements on errors! have you noticed that now app is more stable?

If you aren’t ready for your first, second,….. wedding, give a look at ForeverSnap! You aren’t forced to use a wedding app if you only want to collect other events pics ūüėČ

Windows Developer Conference 2012 #devc12

In the last two days I have participated for FactoryMind at Windows Developer Conference in Milan. As an amazing android developer I have heard carefully all the news proposed by speakers. In my opinion every kind of development technology has its own charm and curiosity and I believe that the new Windows8 will offer to public and developers a new way of think.

Inspired by many active technologies from Apple, Android, Google, (Old) Windows,… this new OS tries to summarize social and canonical schema into a multi-platform operating system granting the maximum experience to users. Far from old styles Windows8 promises to integrate every device in the¬†most convenient manner for the user.

At this conference I have participated at this at these technical talks:

  • Designing a LOB solution in Metro style fashion – Luca Regnicoli
  • From .NET to Metro style apps – Raffaele Rialdi
  • Implementing MVVM in WinRT – Corrado Cavalli
  • Metro style apps: ALM and Background Tasks – Paolo Pialorsi
  • Developing for Intel Ultrabook – Francesco Baldassarri
  • Tile, Toast and push notifications in Metro style – Daniele Bochicchio
  • Cloud based services for Windows 8 – Roberto Brunetti
  • Windows Store – Lorenzo Barbieri
  • Async Programming in .NET 4.5 – Marco Russo

That’s all for this time ūüôā
This is not an IOC to Microsoft world but a new way of think that travels hand by hand with my other one ūüėČ

Simone

[REVIEW] Professional Android 4 Application Development – Reto Meier

Professional Android 4 Application Development

Professional Android 4 Application Development

I have just finished this wonderful technical book about android programming and I think that can be a good idea sharing personal my impressions with you.

In the past two years I have red some Italian books written by Massimo Carli, finding them useful for a base approach. Growing my¬†thirst for knowledge I have encountered Reto‘s work that in my opinion offers a more complete and wider view about this powerful platform.

The book is structured in 19 chapters those present to you a deep overview on all platform features. The most important feature that I have found particularly interesting is the attention provided by the author in teaching step by step through examples. This is a very important point that many teachers and writers forget when they have to write a book because they think that’s better talking in a smoky¬†enchanted way than educate easily and directly the readers.

The author during these chapters provide a full set of examples, related in most of case to an app that reports earth quakes, that grows in page by page involving features, concepts and abstractions like:

  • Intents, IntentFilters and Pending Intents
  • Activities, Services and Receivers
  • Maps and Geolocation
  • Threads and AsyncTasks

In just 21,84‚ā¨, a very competitive price for the contents, you can purchase an ebook that’s too intuitive and expressive for new developers but at the same time for the more expert ones. I have personally bought my ebook on Amazon but if you prefer you can find it on other stores like Wrox or directly in Google Play.

See you next time, maybe with a tutorial ūüôā

Simone

How was the ICT Trade in Ferrara?

In the last two days (8th-9th May) I have participated with father as C.L.T Computers to ICT Trade in Ferrara. In this particular event¬†organized by Sirmi we have seen the most important brands on the Italian scenario like Oracle, HP, Tech Data, Ingram Micro, Telecom,… and many other ones!

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On May 8, Maurizio Cuzari opened the show presenting all that sponsors and talking with them and our about new strategies and solutions against the crisis that is pervading all the world and Italy. So I have learned the real mean of many terms like Channel and Cloud and how this means interact with these companies and their partners. Many of them believe that the idea of Cloud will open in the near feature many new possibilities and opportunities to build new business. In my opinion this is a great possibility but it has to be completed and surrounded by other useful services: money saving and data persistence are primary goals but without services, apps and programs that can solve users problems are useless.

On May 9, we have started our trip visiting stands and having a look to some workshops: in particular we have seen the services offered by Telecom and by Ingram Micro. In the afternoon we had a very interesting meeting with Asus and I had the opportunity to touch and use the most wonderful products of the moment: the Zenbook and the android PadFone. I think that they are nice and cool devices that in a contained price (especially for the PadFone: 2 fast devices in 699‚ā¨¬† is a good compromise) offers a good user experience.

Finally the idea that I have stolen from this experience is that it’s a strange and sad period for our peninsula and Europe but there are basic signals from the IT world those make to hope in a better feature.

Is android difficult or simply too wide?

I have heard that many new android developers are afraid by this platform because they consider it too difficult and for that they try to find many different reasons to prefer other alternatives. I think that these kind of suppositions are not completely true because in other platform you’ll not find better tools, api’s or whatever you want.

On one hand I think that android can be difficult because it’s full of functionalities and because it has some mechanisms (Intents and Receivers) those are not too easy but very powerful.¬†On the other hand it’s not too easy to create standard apps because the pelvis of different kind of devices forces you to create different UIs and solutions.

At the same time this powerful platform and pretty way of think offers you many opportunities:

  • Good and very wide support in documentation, forums and blogs
    (StackOverFlow is a very nice place where you can find answers to your questions)
  • Deep control on device features (Sensors, Services,…)
  • ¬†Narrow limits to your ideas (you can provide your own email app or implement social apps)
  • Possibility to check your UIs with many emulators and sizes
  • ….

After two year of developing, I have acquired a pretty good familiarity with this platform but I think that you can reach a good level in just few months. All that you have to do is a sort of self training with android sdk across examples and good tutorials that you can find on the web. If some years ago the documentation could be skinny, now it has become a fantastic encyclopedia where you can find optimal solutions to your problems.

I hope that many of the escaped developers will reconsider the opportunity to study in deep the new features offered by ICS and HoneyComb.