Monday, September 27, 2010

Over 1000 Active Virgin Usage Meter Installations

After checking the Android Developer Console I was surprised to see that Virgin Usage Meter now has over 1000 active installations. It has come a long way since it was a simple app with an awful red background and yellow usage bars. I remember how surprised I was when it first hit 100 active downloads and now it's 10 times that. While it's not the millions of active downloads some apps out there get it's definitely many more than I expected.

App Inventor Experiment - Kick Off

The App Inventor experiment has kicked off with Maria completing her first tutorial, the dreaded HelloPurr.

It was a stuttering start and after 1 or 2 unanswered questions I think she started to understand that I was unwilling unable to help her throughout the experiment even for the tutorials. I have to admit it was really hard to hold back the laughter as she struggled with the first initial hurdles. However, that was all the funny I was afforded as she tore through the tutorial in less than 20 minutes and was playing with her first complete Android app before I realized what was happening. Unfortunately I quickly realized she was using the app to terrorize the cat with meowing sounds. Perhaps she had ulterior motives for getting through the tutorial so fast?

App Inventor Experiment - The Criteria

As I promised in last post behold the experiment's criteria:
  • The app must be developed via Google's App Inventor
  • It should use persistent storage to store and retrieve data
  • It should display the stored data to the screen in some way
  • It must have a real world use and cannot be a usual "hello world app"
  • The interface must be considerably polished and not just thrown together
The criteria make for a pretty tough challenge for any developer, let alone somebody with no previous development experience and thinks if statements are what you use when deciding what cooking ingredient to use. So good luck to Maria, she's going to need it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Priority Inbox for Android and Hot Rebooting

Google have released an upgraded gmail app which gives Android users access to priority inbox as well as some other new features. For those of you wondering what priority inbox is, briefly it's a feature which organises your inbox based on the perceived importance of an email using a few different criteria. Apparently it has a learning ability so it gets more accurate over time. You can read more about it here. The new update can be found on the market.

A quick note for those of you using a custom ROM. If you receive an update unsuccessful message, you may need to un-install gmail first using titanium backup, adb, or terminal emulator. Make sure you reboot if un-installing from titanium backup.

The next app of interest is Hot Reboot by appelflap over at XDA-Developers. This gem of a utility speeds up the reboot time by leaving the kernel active and just rebooting the shell. In doing this the shell, apps, and running services are killed off leaving your phone in fresh state in about half the time of a full reboot. There will still be times when you need to do a full reboot but for most issues you should be back up and running much quicker.

You can get Hot Reboot from here

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Google App Inventor Experiment Commences

On opening up my in-box on Saturday I discovered a pleasant, if over due, surprise left to me by Google. With invitation in hand I had a quick conversation with Maria at The Gourmet Challenge who seemed a little nervous but acknowledged her petition as my lab rat.

For those of you who are asking yourself what exactly I am talking about have a quick read of this.

I promised on the previous post that I would post up the requirements of the app. Unfortunately I didn't get to look at App Inventor over the weekend so I'm not exactly sure of what it can and can't do. I will however post that information in the next couple of days.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Virgin Usage Meter Bug Submission

I've been writing a lot of bug replies lately, and most of them are pretty much carbon copies of each other describing what information I need in order to diagnose the problem.

In order to speed up the turn around of bug submissions I think it will be more efficient if I list some details here on describing what I need. That way I get all the information I need up front.

Things to include in your email:
  • A description of the bug
For postpaid accounts
  • A copy of your Bill Preview page (Save file as HTML)
  • A copy of your Mobile Internet Usage page (Save file as HTML)
For prepaid accounts
  • A copy of your Mobile Internet Usage page (Save file as HTML)
  • A copy of your Recharge History page (Save file as HTML)
Important: All data sent to me is private and confidential and will destroyed at the earliest time possible. Please note that I cannot extract passwords from any of the above files and will not abuse or share any of the data I receive.

First Dual Core Mobile

According to an internal document doing the rounds the MyTouch HD is set to be the first phone to surface with a dual core Arm processor. Whether or not the document is authentic is debatable however if true this is very exciting and could open the flood gates for other dual core phones and more complex apps.

The full rumoured MyTouch HD Specs
  • 1Ghz Dual Core CPU
  • 4GB Internal Memory
  • 8 GB SDCard Included
  • 5MP Camera
  • VGA Front Facing Camera
  • 3.8 Inch Screen
Read more here

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Nexus One ROM leak: FRG33

Just a quick heads up that FRG33 has leaked for the Nexus One. This was originally hoped to be a leak of gingerbread considering the G in the version title, but alas it's only a Froyo update leak. Though as the saying goes, don't look a gift horse in the face.

Reports have said it appears to make things a big smoother and WIFI is more stable and a little quicker.

For those interested, head on over to the XDA-Developers forum and check it out.