Calling All Android Developers

To all Android developers,

Two Bits of News 

– The Nokia X Portathon & The Africa Android Challenge 2014

The Nokia X Portathon

Attend the  Portathon organized by the Mobile Monday Nigeria Team on the 27th (IdeaHub) and 28th (CCHub) to learn how to port your Android apps to the new Nokia X Platform.There will be engineers available to assist and to provide advice on how to optimise your existing Android Apps for the Nokia X Platform.

Link: http://momonigeria.org/port2nokiax/


The Africa Android Challenge 2014 – 21 days left!

Get Involved in the Africa Android Challenge 2014. The deadline to submit your application is April 10th 2014.  There are numerous prizes from Alcatel and other sponsors (smart-phones, tablets, etc).  The AAC website www.androidchallenge.org contains many resources and best practices to help you design a high quality app that meets global standards.  Remember that this year, we are looking for the best interfaces and the apps that utilize best the Google Cloud API. 

Note also that a team of Organizers throughout Africa and Android experts will be able to facilitate Android training via web sessions during the competition.  And a community event is being prepared in each participating country to celebrate the winners of the first round.  The names and emails of AAC Organizers (who are usually IT community leaders) will be published on AAC website soon.  So submit your app early, that way the Android experts can review it before the deadline and advise you on how to improve it.  Hence, a developer can resubmit his/her app anytime before April 10th.

Submit your app @: http://androidchallenge.org/submit-en

Meet the Kids Building Mobile Games in Uyo

Event Listener. Framerate Per Second. Function. Configuration file. Alpha Transparency. Compile. Error. Emulator. Those were words I heard this month from kids.

Fayola

Meet Fayola. She’s 10. And she has an Android app of her own. She’s one of the 8 to 16 year old kids (14 of them) that took part in the Mobile Game Development Bootcamp for Kids in Uyo (Akwa Ibom State). Organized by GDG Uyo (Google Developers Group Uyo), these kids joined the lab after school for 3 hours each day for 5 days.

Android was the platform the kids built games for. And LUA [language] was language used to teach these kids  programming. Corona was the SDK. Sublime Text was the IDE. The awesome GDG Uyo team started with the basics of computer science and programming concepts and the barest minimum on physics. By the third day, it became more exciting when they started displaying images on their phone screen and making them move using physics.

The GDG Uyo Organizer and lead for this workshop, +Hanson Johnson  had this to say
“At the end of each day, the parents practically had to drag these kids away from the computers where they were building their apps. The kids were really excited with their new-found power. Being able to build games and see them work!”.

On Saturday, many of the proud parents were there to witness the showcase by these kids. There were four apps from the  4 teams created. None of them production-ready (appstore-ready) but an awesome achievement nonetheless.

SaveNigeria Game:
The most complete of them all. Your mission is to protect attacks on Nigeria by preventing Fuel Scarcity, Attacks, Political Party Crisis , Power problems etc from reaching the Map of Nigeria. The Map of Nigeria fades slightly with each failed attempt by you to protect it.

FFMFF:
The girl that did this insisted this must be the name of her app. She had a static moon and  one star by the moon. Wherever you touch on the screen, the star moves there.

Keke Driving:
Seems the plan was to create an app similar to Danfo Driver but with a Tricycle that drops and picks up people at different bus stops.

MultiPuck:
Create Hockey Pucks on the screen and hit them off as fast as you can for points.


#Update: You can download the games to your Android device and test: http://bit.ly/1nD67sm

Check out some of the photos from the final day where each kid got some time walk us through their ideas and the code they wrote and how it all worked. Using words like : Event Listener, Framerate Per Second, Functions, Configuration file, Alpha Transparency, Compile, Error, Emulator.

It was exciting to see the enthusiasm and creativity of these kids and the work put in by the GDG Uyo team.

You can follow GDG Uyo  for updates on their programme for Kids. Or hit +Hanson Johnson  up.

Last Year, +Aniedi Udo-Obong of Audax led kids in a similar programme called Audax Code School and plans to do the same this year. Hit up Aniedi.

For GDG Uyo, the bootcamp isn’t the end. There are firm plans to continue training these kids and new ones too.

2014: The GDGLagos in Preview Mode

2014 is about engagement. Engaging within the community and with the larger ecosystem.

Regular Events
In 2014, we are dedicated to having events no more than 45 days apart, and so far, we have had two events just 33 days apart and have another one planned for the end of  March, another 33 days later.  The first event was “Web Security – Think like a Hacker, Protect Yourself” showing how hackers work and how to build apps and services with security in mind, and the second event was “Design Best Practices with Andy Volk” with a focus by Googler Andy on how to build great user experiences on web and mobile apps.

Large Events
This year, we have two large events planned

GDays Nigeria 2014 (July)
– GDGLagos DevFest (October/November)

Last year, the GDays Nigeria was a one day event. We have enough potential speakers and content + content from Google I/O 2014 to make the 2014 edition a two-day event. This time around, we will be having parallel tracks based on level of experience(Beginners and Intermediate->Expert) and interest (Platform, Product and APIs). There’s quite a lot to look forward to at this event.

Election Theme
Over the next 12 months, the focus of Nigeria as a country is towards the elections – Presidential, Gubernatorial (Governorship) and other arms of the government. This year, we will be having two events with a focus on creating solutions that will enable conversations around elections and citizen engagement.

Workshops
We are also partnering with two technology hubs and a mobile-focussed community to begin a series of trainings for developers, to help grow the skills and capacity of our developer ecosystem.

Open-Source
The developer community is somewhat fragmented and a number of community members have volunteered to contribute to creating an online platform to connect developers, get discovered as a developer and allow them showcase their work. We plan to launch this platform in April.

Zero to Sixty in 3 Days
These are hardcore type developer trainings we have planned, focused on one product, platform or API for Beginners.

Google I/O Extended
Due to the fact that Nigeria is 9 hours behind San Francisco, during Google I/O we plan on having code-parties – overnight events to allow developers enjoy the sessions with other developers and also churn out a few apps (we hope some of these will be launched during I/O).

This is a summary of the GDG Lagos plans for 2014. And as we go along, we will update these plans.
2014 :going to be the best so far.

2013: The GDGLagos in Review

In 2013, the tech community in Nigeria as a whole grew in leaps and bounds and the GDGLagos is glad to be a part of that growth. The GDGLagos grew to over 600 developers (from a little under 400) and has become a more actively engaged community.

In the course of the year, we had 6 events and one large event and a DevFest.

The 2013 events:
Getting Started on the Cloud Event
GDG Lagos DevFest
Cross Platform Mobile Apps Development
G|Days Nigeria 2013
Google I/O Extended + Code Party
GDG AppsScript & HTML5 for Mobile
– Google Cloud Developer Challenge

The largest event called GDays Nigeria was held in Lagos and had over 300 developers in attendance. This event was organized in partnership with the other GDG Organizers in Nigeria.
There were several sessions that day – including tech-entrepreneurship, user experience designs, Gamification and Android development.
Our Keynote speaker was Tomi Davies (Serial Entrepreneur, Lagos Angel Network convener and CEO, TVC). We had Nsubuga Hassan from Uganda talk about the New Location API and many other great speakers.


A lot of the great feedback from this event is going into the plans for GDays Nigeria 2014.

In the Google Cloud Developer Challenge #GCDC, there were 53 entries from Nigeria alone, representing over 40% of entries from the Sub-Saharan Africa and nearly 13% of the entries worldwide. The winning app (FunnyLeni) in the Entertainment/Social/Fun category came from Nigeria – and from the GDGLagos.

We believe 2013 was a great year and we see already that 2014 is going to be bigger. Way bigger.

This Month: Android App Portathon

Do you have an Android App on the Google Play store? There's a chance to get your app onto hundreds of thousands of Android devices – the New Nokia-X
At the end of this month of March, the MobileMonday team will be hosting a Portathon where 250 Apps will be ported to the Nokia X Platform. We will be having software engineers from Nokia available to provide advice on how to optimise your existing Android Apps for the Nokia X Platform and to provide guidance on using the Nokia X service extensions (in-app purchases, Map API's and Notifications).
If you have built an app but have not yet published it on the Nokia Store, publishing is easy [ http://publish.nokia.com ]
 

Africa Android Challenge 2014 – [AAC 2014]

Are you aware of #aac2014?

Africa Android Challenge #aac2014 is a competition that allows us to groom the next generation of successful developers and Android experts on the African continent. These developers will create innovative Android applications with a focus on #design.

Why AAC?

The challenge aims at increasing the quality of Android Apps written by African Developers and well as to increase the quantity of video content onYoutube and Google+ illustrating ambitions and aspirations of African developers.

Where is it happening?
1. Sub-Saharan Africa
2. North Africa
3. Middle East Africa

When?
Round 1 :

30th Jan : Submission site opens
10th April : Deadline for resubmitting apps
15th April : End of first-round – Judges announces Semi-Finalists
15th April : Shipping Android Phones and Tablets to winners (semi-finalists)
15th April to 30th April : Frame to organize GDG Barcamp sync events (GDG/JUG) to celebrate the winners.

Round 2 :

15th April : Re-submission site opens
15th May : Deadline for resubmitting apps
20th May : End of the second round – Judges announce the winners
20th May : The team announces the destination for the winners
Jun, Jul, Aug, Sept : The winners travel (all-expenses-paid) to the Android/Google Developer Group community event.

Categories:
1. Education/Not for Profit/Reference/Productivity/Tools Enterprise/Small Business

2. Games(Arcade/Action)/Social Networking / Lifestyle/Travel/Misc

Criteria :

– Effective Use of Google Cloud platform (bonus)
Such submissions must have an URL of http://aac2014-[AppName].appspot.com domain for the cloud back-end
– Usability on multiple screen sizes
– User-friendliness (Ease of use)
– Relevance to Country (i.e. value-add to users)
– Innovation and creativity
– Execution of idea 
– Use of hardware platform or use of Android’s features
– Branding (clever, catchy, sticky or innovative branding strategy)
– Necessity  (solve a unique problem, meet a need)

Judging criteria: 

The Judges will evaluate each entry and give it a score from one (1) to five (5) according to specific criterias. The entry with the highest score will receive the first prize; 
In the event of a tie between any eligible entries, an additional judge will break the tie based on the criteria outlined below
The team will create a pool of countries with less than 3 submissions

What tools do you need to begin developing Android Apps:

1. An IDE (Integrated Development Environment) for example: Eclispe, Android Studio, IntelliJ
2. The ADT (Android Developer Tools plugin) for eclipse: http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html
3. Android SDK (Software Development Kit) – The Android SDK provides you the API libraries and developer tools necessary to build, test, and debug apps for Android.

If you're a new Android developer, we recommend you download the ADT Bundle to quickly start developing apps. It includes the essential Android SDK components and a version of the Eclipse IDE with built-in ADT (Android Developer Tools) to streamline your Android app development.

With a single download, the ADT Bundle includes everything you need to begin developing apps:

1. Eclipse + ADT plugin 
2. Android SDK Tools
3. Android Platform-tools
4. The latest Android platform
5. The latest Android system image for the emulator

Important sites for reference and download: 

1. Main Website: http://developer.android.com/index.html
2. Traning classes: http://developer.android.com/training/index.html
3. Tutorials: http://www.tutorialspoint.com/android/android_resources.htm
4. Tutorials: http://www.vogella.com/tutorials/Android/article.html

We shall be having hack days and barcamps for the AAC 2014 but in the meantime you are encouraged to start developing.

All the best!

Making Sense of Data with Google [Online Course]

Making Sense of Data is a self-paced, online course developed to introduce people to tools and techniques to easily prepare, analyze, and apply data to practical problems. As we all know quality research is the first step to building a quality product.


Registration is open now, and I encourage you to sign up, and share with your friends, colleagues and communities that might be interested. The course is offered from March 18 – April 4, and can be completed at your own pace during this time.


You can learn more by reading this blog post or taking a look at this intro video.