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May 2012 - Posts - Wallace B. McClure

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May 2012 - Posts

Xamarin Designer for Android Webinar - Recording

Here is some info on the recording of the webinar that I did last week for AppDev regarding the Xamarin Designer for Android.Xamarin Designer

Basic Info: Android user interfaces can be created declaratively by using XML files, or programmatically in code. The Xamarin Android Designer allows developers to create and modify declarative layouts visually, without having to deal with the tedium of hand-editing XML files. The designer also provides real-time feedback, which lets the developer validate changes without having to redeploy the application in order to test a design. This can speed up UI development in Android tremendously. In this webinar, we'll take a look at UI Design in Mono for Android, the basics of the Xamarin Android Designer, and build a simple application with the designer.

Here is the link:

http://media.appdev.com/EDGE/LL/livelearn05232012.wmv

I think it will only play in Internet Explorer.  Enjoy!

Cross-Platform Mobile Development With Mono for Android and MonoTouch

Many years ago, in fact pre-Java, I remember a hallway discussion about the desire to write a single application that could easily run across various platforms. At the time, we were only worried about writing applications on Windows 3.1 and Mac OS 7.x. There were many discussions about windows, user interface concepts, and specifically a rather long discussion as to whether Mac users would accept a Mac application that didn't have balloon help. Thankfully, the marketplace answered this question for us with the Windows API winning the battle.

A similar set of questions is currently going on in the mobile world. Unfortunately, at this point in time, there is currently no winning API and none currently in sight. What's a developer to do? Here are some questions that developers have (and there are many more):

  • How can mobile developers target Android and the iPhone with the same code?
  • How can .NET developers share their code across Android, iPhone and other platforms?
  • How can developers give applications the look and feel of the specific platform and still allow as much code as possible to be shared?
  • Mobile devices share many common features, such as cameras, accelerometers, and address books. How can we take advantage of them in a platform independent way and still give the users the look of every other application running on their platform?

In this article, we'll look at some solutions to these cross-platform and code-sharing questions between Mono for Android, MonoTouch and the .NET Framework available to developers.

 

Xamarin Designer for Android Webinar - Webinar via AppDev May 23

I'll be doing a Webinar on May 23 on the Xamarin Mono for Android Designer that is new with Mono for Android 4.2.  This is a free webinar presented by AppDev, please attend if you can.  Xamarin DesignerHere is some info on the webinar:

Android user interfaces can be created declaratively by using XML files, or programmatically in code. The Xamarin Android Designer allows developers to create and modify declarative layouts visually, without having to deal with the tedium of hand-editing XML files. The designer also provides real-time feedback, which lets the developer validate changes without having to redeploy the application in order to test a design. This can speed up UI development in Android tremendously. In this webinar, we'll take a look at UI Design in Mono for Android, the basics of the Xamarin Android Designer, and build a simple application with the designer.

Video Training - Android Advanced Development Using Mono for Android 4
This course is about how to use Mono for Android with Tablets and the new Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich release. The course introduces Android Tablets and Fragments, new controls that are available through Android 4.0, new application programming interfaces in Android 4.0, and new features available in the Google Android SDK Release 17 that can improve their development experience. This course also contains a module on the Android Design Experience, what developers can use to improve the user experiences, design suggestions from Google’s Android team, and some thoughts on how to improve the design experience via software code.
eLearning event on HTML5 for Mobile with jQuery Mobile - May 17

I'll be doing an eLearning event on HTML5 for Mobile with jQuery Mobile. There will also be a few items sprinkled in on ASP.NET Razor.

Mobile development is a hot item. Customers are buying iPhones, iPads, Android devices, and many other mobile computing devices at an ever increasing record pace. Devices based on iOS and Android are nearly 80 percent of the marketplace. RIM continues to be dominant in the business area across the world. Nokia's growth with Windows Phone will grow on a worldwide basis. At the same time, clearly web development is a tremendous driver of applications, both on the public Internet and on private networks. How can developers target these various mobile platforms with web technologies? Developers can write web applications that take advantage of each mobile platform, but that is a lot of work. Into this space, the jQuery Mobile framework was developed. This eLearning series will provide an overview of mobile web development with jQuery Mobile, a detailed look at what the jQuery Mobile framework provides for us, how we can customize jQuery Mobile, and how we can use jQuery Mobile inside of ASP.NET.

Link: http://elearning.left-brain.com/event/mobile-web-development
Lights, Camera, Action with Mono for Android Article in Visual Studio Magazine

Multimedia is expected in today's mobile applications, and the fun isn't only for smartphone and tablet users. Mono for Android, based on the Mono project's open source implementation of the Microsoft .NET Framework, can help you take advantage of Android Camera APIs in Visual Studio. In this article, we'll look at taking pictures, loading pictures, video playback and recording video.

Link: http://visualstudiomagazine.com/articles/2012/05/01/plug-in-to-mono.aspx

I don't know about you, but I'm amazed at what you can do with the multimedia in today's mobile devices. I grew up playing "Pong" and remember when games had to fit into big boxes with green screens and ASCII art. About 10 years ago, I had to create an interpreter for the graphics processor in the IBM AS/400 systems (iSeries now) to generate graphics in a screen-scraping application. How did we survive those days?

Now, mobile devices allow you to take pictures, record audio and video, and send it all to friends and relatives in minutes. You're seeing this happen all over the world, even in uprisings, as people compete to get their stories out.

Many people are confused by what multimedia actually is (including me), but for our purposes, I'll look at how .NET developers can use the Xamarin Mono for Android plug-in with Visual Studio 2010 to create Android applications that use pictures and video. If you're new to Mono for Android, check out my tutorial, "Introduction to MonoDroid".

While Mono for Android has definitely grown and matured since then, many of the basics are still applicable. However, the Mono garbage collector (GC) is not quite as advanced as the GC in the Microsoft .NET Framework. Sometimes, you'll need to help the GC along by calling GC.Collect at an appropriate part of your application.

There are a large number of Android devices in the marketplace. What works on one may not work properly on another. The code in this article was tested and validated against Mono for Android 4.0.x. Testing was done on two devices: an HTC EVO 4G running Android 2.3 (code-named "Gingerbread"), and a Motorola Xoom tablet running Android 4.0.3 (code-named "Ice Cream Sandwich").

I've found that if an app will work on my HTC EVO 4G and my Motorola Xoom, it typically works across many devices.

Playing, Recording, and Editing Video in the iPhone with MonoTouch Article

This article resumes where we left off in "Working with Images and Animation on the iPhone and iPad with .NET and C#: Part 1," which looked at multimedia app development on the iPhone and iPad, including how to display simple images, take pictures with the device's camera, and perform some simple animation with the images. In this article, part 2, we'll look at how to perform more complicated animation using the NSTimer and UIView classes, how to display and record video, and how to edit the video.

Link: http://www.devproconnections.com/article/mobile-development/animation-app-iphone-ipad-142265

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