Meet Kotlin

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Kotlin is a JVM language that hit version 1.0 about a year ago (February 2016).
It is developed by JetBrains, the same people who make my favorite suite of
IDEs. The language itself is open-source under the Apache License 2.0 and is
developed as a community project over at kotlinlang.org. Kotlin is something
that I have become rather excited about over the past year. This post’s goal is
not to teach you Kotlin but to get you excited about it!

6 Steps to Improve App Search Rankings

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Working as developers, we are focused on the low level technical details of a product, being that a website or an app. This heads down approach often makes us not to pay attention to many high level details that are crucial to bring our product to success. The typical path for a developer, at least at the beginning, is to build an app, put it on the store and then see it fail miserably. If that has happened to your app, then this post is for you!

Late Subscribing and Polling APIs with RxAndroid

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Howdy, lazy bum! Enjoying the ReactiveX magic? Want to take a look at polling?

I’ll be walking you through a solution I put together for one of our up and coming apps! It works rather well, I learned a lot, and so far no complaints…although there are no users yet either!

Feeling quite charitable, I’m going to let you in on some useful bits and pieces as we build up to polling: threading, late subscribing, replay, manual re-triggering and error handling (a must for preserving replays).

Android Tip: adb reverse

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I work from all over the place: Home, on public transit, the office, coffee shops, etc.

A big challenge to developing android apps in an environment where my laptop and phone are on different networks (wifi vs. LTE, or laptop tethered through phone) is the inability for my phone to see the API server that is often running locally on my laptop. Here is a simple tip to allow your phone to hit the backend over ADB and a usb cable.

Hiding Android’s System Bar

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For years developers (and consequently consumers), have had to accept the fact that the Tablets (and some phones) would always have the System/Navigation Bar visible on their screens. A 10.1 inch advertised screens, offered in fact a 9.8 inch usable screen.

Finally Google’s latest Android OS, KitKat, introduces a decent user-friendly tool that gives us ownership of that last bit of screen.

4 Tips to Help You Choose a Software Development Partner

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As we all know, technology moves at lightning speed, as soon as you think you’re caught up, the next new i-something has launched. Unless you’re constantly keeping yourself privy of the latest and greatest web, mobile and design technologies, hiring a development firm could be a great alternative to help guide you and your project. Whether you’re working in a startup atmosphere or part of a seasoned corporation, these day’s it’s alway nice to know some software experts just in case. Which brings me to my 4 tips to help you find a great engineering partner.

A quick look at Android 4.4 – KitKat

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On Thursday, October 31st Google announced their new flagship phone, the Nexus 5. Along with their newest device they announced it would ship with Android 4.4, codenamed “KitKat” (much to the surprise of the entire Android community that was expecting “Key Lime Pie”.)

I received my Nexus 5 on November 7th, and have had some time to get used to KitKat as well as the device itself. Originally this post was going to review the device and the new Android version, but instead I want to discuss several of the key changes that have been introduced with 4.4 and my thoughts on them.

Android Studio: Not Ready For Prime Time

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As one would expect with a fine product, it would work best right out of the box. In the case of Android Studio, some assembly is required. The issue I found was that a newly created project with default settings wouldn’t compile. I thought that this bug might have been specific to my setup, but after reproducing it on 3 different computers and finding several outstanding questions as well as a few open bugs with Google concerning the issue, I decided that a fix would be a fine thing to write up, hoping it enables other people to develop as painlessly as possible.

Is iOS Dying?

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ios7 logo

Apple and Steve Jobs started the smart phone revolution. Just 7 short years ago we had the first iPhone, a technical marvel in its day. The craftsmanship of not only the device but also the iOS operating system was a thing to behold. Apple continued with its excellence in both hardware and software design for years. Unfortunately, the wild ride has ended, at least for the moment. While the hardware has kept up relatively well (although there is not a heck of a lot of innovation), the iOS operating system has, sadly, regressed.