Antimatroid, The

thoughts on computer science, electronics, mathematics

Posts Tagged ‘Acer A500

Android ecosystem on Windows 7

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Introduction

This past spring I decided to take a dive into mobile platforms and decided I’d get my feet with a little Android development. I’d done some Java development in the past and and with reports of increased market share, especially among tablets, I figured Android was the right platform to get started with. Since it’s always good to document things, here’s a rundown of what was needed to get a basic development environment working on Windows 7. As I continue to explore and learn more, I’ll continue to update this list with more information.

JDK SE 1.6

First thing that I needed to download was the Java Development Kit (JDK) from Oracle. The JDK provides all of the necessary components to get started and run Java based applications.

Android SDK

Next core development kit to download is the Android SDK from Google. The SDK has all of the Android specific tools and libraries to develop and test applications that are meant to run on the Android platform.

SDK Manager

It is a little deceptive, but installing the Android SDK above only installs a set of tools to manage different versions of the SDK. To download the actual libraries you’ll need to launch the SDK Manager. From there I decided to download the API for Gingerbread 2.3.3 (API10) and for Honeycomb 3.x (API11-13). I had to run the SDK Manager as an Administrator in order for the application to properly download all of the assets to my machine. Running the application as a user will result in a number of “Access Denied” errors in the log console.

AVD Manager

The second thing I setup were two virtual devices using the AVD Manager. My main interest is in developing applications for tablets, so I created a Honeycomb virtual device with a gig of memory and a reduced screen size. Also decided to create a Gingerbread virtual device with half a gig of memory without any screen size restrictions. Both come in handy to make sure that any app I write will work well on handhelds and tablets.

IntelliJ Community Edition

To do my development I decided to go with IntelliJ as my editor. A lot of people out there use Eclipse; I used to use it a long time ago, but decided that I wanted to try something new. Installation went smoothly and the only custom configuration dealt with specifying the location of the JDK and the Android SDK.

Acer A500 USB Driver

Developing an application against a virtual device is fun and all, but nothing beats testing and using an application on an actual device. I decided to go with an Acer A500 since it was the right mix of features, cost and responsiveness. To deploy an application to the device, I did have to go and download a USB driver from Acer’s website so that the Android Debug Bridge (ADB) from the Android SDK would recognize the device when it was plugged in to my machine. Past that, it was a seamless experience of getting IntelliJ to deploy an application to the device and for me to begin hands-on testing.

Wrap-up

Overall, getting started with the Android Platform has gone very smoothly. I dove into all of this without reading any documentation and the process was fairly self explanatory. I’m looking forward to learning more about the platform and ultimately trying to get a product out on the App Market.

Written by lewellen

2012-03-01 at 11:09 pm