Tuesday, January 22, 2013

I have no mouth but I must scream

Some years ago I was having insomnia and I decided to surf the Internet. I don't know whether I was looking for some Matrix/Level 13-related topic, or some weird science fiction. But I came across a nice short tale, called "I have no mouth but I must scream", which kept me amazed through the night. I remember that I looked for information about it since it left me chilled.

I post here a couple of nice videos that popped up in a later search in autumn.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Phones as uniquitous computers

For years, cell phones have suffered from square-minded design, by the same '70s and '80s engineers who deemed them as communication "terminals". I was outraged when I saw a little piece of shit that could not do anything more than letting you speak and send SMS priced the same as a full-geared laptop, which enabled you not only that but the full potential to create and transmit whatever you wanted. In that regard I am of the same opinion than Steve Jobs, who I despise as a person, but that quite ofter was right about many things. In particular, he said something like "I hated my cell phone, I could do nothing with it, it was completely dumb". The closed-down mentality of the engineers at Nokia, Motorola, Alcatel... ancient companies which didn't know how to adapt to the 21st century, and forced an incredibly huge market such as the cell phone market to a 10-year delay.

I am quite happy to see that Android has liberated the market to almost any participant (after the iPhone's vision liberated the old-fashioned mentality). I can purchase an Android phone for as low as GBP110 and do the same office tasks that I would do with a laptop.

Welcome to the 21st century, cell phones.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Android SDK

After a month and some days developing with the bare Android emulator provided by the SDK, my new employer has given me a Google Nexus to toy with. The first thing I wanted to do was to connect it to Eclipse.

Basically, what you have to do is to open the Android SDK Manager, and install the USB driver for your phone model (either Google or OEM). It copies the install files to the hard drive, so what you want to do next is to open the Windows device manager and look for the phone device that lacks its drivers. You go to the \android-sdk\extras\google\usb_driver folder and pick them up there.

After that (rebbot if you need it), Eclipse will let you choose where you want to debug the app

This tutorial has a lot of screenshots, detailed instructions and more fancy stuff.