Beginning Android Application Development Paperback – Apr 19 2011
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From the Back Cover
Create applications for the latest Android OS
The Android OS is a popular and flexible platform for many of today's most in-demand mobile devices. This full-color guide offers you a hands-on introduction to creating Android applications for the latest mobile devices. Veteran author Wei-Meng Lee accompanies each lesson with real-world examples to drive home the content he covers. Beginning with an overview of core Android features and tools, the author proceeds to teach everything you need to know to successfully develop your own Android applications.
Beginning Android Application Development:
Explains what an activity is and reviews its lifecycle
Zeroes in on how to customize activities by applying styles and themes
Looks at the components of a screen, including LinearLayout, AbsoluteLayout, and RelativeLayout, among others
Details ways to adapt to different screen sizes and adjust display orientation
Reviews the variety of views such as TextView, ProgressBar, TimePicker, and more
Covers SMS messaging and networking
Walks you through how to create an Android Service and interact with it
Pares down the most essential steps for publishing Android applications
Wrox Beginning guides are crafted to make learning programming languages and technologies easier than you think, providing a structured, tutorial format that will guide you through all the techniques involved.
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About the Author
Wei-Meng Lee is a technologist and founder of Developer Learning Solutions (www.learn2develop.net). He writes extensively for online publications and magazines on topics ranging from .NET to Mac OS X. In addition, he is the author of Beginning iOS 4 Application Development, as well as many other technology books and articles.
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Top Customer Reviews
I would recommend this product.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I started stepping through the book page by page and following the samples. By around the middle of chapter 3 I was able to break away and start coding my own app and just flipped to the sections of the book I needed for specific advice after that.
The tutorials are good. Straight to the point without the dead weight that plagues so many web samples (where all too often I found a sample that did the 1 thing I wanted and 15 things I didn't, which just created confusion). This book gives you the full code and then goes to a "How It Works" section that goes through the code bit by bit explaining what the different pieces do. That has been an immense help and there's nothing this book covers that left me with any doubt on how to do it.
It's still "Beginning" Android development because it's mostly covering the basics. Lots of options are not covered, but then, that would take another 500 pages. This book will get things functional to the point that if you want to do something more advanced, you'll likely be able to fill in the gaps with the official Android documentation online.
One mark I will put against the book: it did not cover widgets. Still, after using the book to create my widget as an app, I had enough understanding of what was going on that I was able to convert my app to a widget with the help of some online docs (which I previously was not able to make sense of).
Note that the book does not teach you Java. I have never programmed in Java before, though I've used C, C++ and C#, which is similar. Search Google for "Trail: Learning the Java Language" and that will take you to the Oracle site. Between that tutorial and this book, I was able to go from a complete Android novice to putting my first small app on the Market in about a week.
Wei-Meng Lee as an experienced trainer had put a great deal of effort into how he could best communicate Android to a beginner, and has done it excellently. For example on page 105 to 109 the author writes about screen orientation and persistent state information. This area of Android is so well explained better than any other Android book I have read.
This book has a lot of sample code which can be easily incorporated into ones App, and the explanation does not leave you with more unanswered questions. Like most Android books I still believe having a programming background is still a requirement basically because most Android books teach you how to build Apps, and not how to program.
I have enjoyed reading this book and I thoroughly recommend it to anyone interested in mobile application development. A well deserved 5 stars.
The only thing I can think of that would improve the book is more comprehensive indexing. It was frustrating to find a term such as "new" used in the code and while it was fairly apparent from the examples that "new" was used to create an object, I could not find any explanation of the term. The same applied to several other functions. Perhaps for a long-time Java or C++ user the explanation of such terms is uneccessary, but for the beginning Android programmer, it would be helpful.
All in all, a book I would recommend to anyone who has a basic understanding of programing, if verse in OOP as well, then the book is even an easier read.