04
Jul
Jelly-Bean-Logo_thumb1_thumb_thumb
Last Updated: August 10th, 2012

Hello and welcome to round 2 of Getting To Know Android 4.1. If you missed the inaugural episode (about the lock screen, software buttons, and icons) you can catch a rerun right here. And if you did see it, I suggest you go look at it again, because I updated it with a crazy menu button bug. Seriously, go look. I'll wait.

Today we're getting into something a little more meaty: The revamped notifications system!

27
Jun
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"Android has always put you in control when it comes to staying notified and connected. Now you can take action directly from the notifications shade," says Android's updated "What's New" page. Indeed, today's Jelly Bean announcement saw a number of improvements to the already handy notification system we've come to know and love in previous iterations of Android. Not only can the new notifications system display larger, richer notifications, developers can create actionable notification with interactive controls for telephony, music, and more.

19
Jun
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When the terms architectural, engineering, and construction are mentioned regarding design software, one name comes to mind: AutoDesk. They company has made available some pretty amazing software for Android, like AutoCAD, SketchBook, Inventor Publisher, and Design Review. Now, it has released its popular three-dimensional engineering software ForceEffect to the Play Store.

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ForceEffect offers some very nice features:

  • Freehand sketching of elements and construction lines with snaps, constraints, and inferencing
  • Object dimensioning, global scaling, units, constraints
  • Import image as background
  • Create joints (welded, pinned)
  • Break element at joints
  • Create supports (fixed, grounded, sliding)
  • Create loads (known, unknown, distributed) and moments
  • Add weight to individual elements
  • Compute reaction forces and moments for equilibrium and over-constrained systems
  • Toggle forces to show force vector components
  • Results reporting with picture, results, all equations
  • Save and load files from Autodesk 360
  • In app tutorials

Best of all, it's completely free, so even if it looks like something you'd just like to play with, you're not spending a penny to give it a shot.

15
Jun
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With the introduction of Draw Something's "fresh new look!" update a couple of days ago came many design changes, not all of them entirely great. Just for fun, I decided to take a shot at making Draw Something's design slightly "fresher," or at least slightly more sensible. Just like my last design critique, I'll start by taking a look at what issues the current design has, and then make a few suggestions (with some quick mockups) as to what I think could be improved.

14
May
facebooklogo

Remember when Facebook said that it was going to finish its IPO, and then work on improving its mobile experience? Well, reverse that. Ahead of the company's IPO, the social networking giant has already announced at least one minor improvement to its mobile apps and website: bigger pictures and posts!

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Old version on the left, new version in the center and right.

In an effort to make use of all those wonderful high-resolution displays you kids are carrying around these days, Facebook is making photos look bigger, and posts wider, to the point of reaching the edges of your display.

04
May
lawyer

The Galaxy S III is... well... it's ugly. There's really no other way to put it. But why? Why is it ugly? I don't mean aesthetically, why is it ugly, I mean, "How did something like this ever make it out of Samsung's design studio?" I'll tell you how, it was never in the design studio. This phone design was born down the hall, in a room where the door sign reads "Samsung Legal."

It was designed by lawyers.

04
May
2012-04-26 14h49_20
Last Updated: May 19th, 2012

Building apps can be a tough task. It can be difficult visualizing how the functionality of an app and its UI work together before you have a working model. Prototyper aims to alleviate some of that stress by letting you build what appears to be a functional app, without that messy business of it having to work.

This contest is now over. Here are our winners, selected at random:
  • MJ
  • Deepu Mukundan

Congratulations, guys - all of you will be contacted for your information in the near future!

12
Apr
dolphintiny

Dolphin Browser has always been one of the better browser alternatives on Android, and with version 8.0, it's about to get a bit better. In addition to a nice even version number, the update adds a menu bar along the bottom of the browser, an improved Add-on sidebar that's not confusing to look at, and a shiny new Dolphin button for easy access to the Dolphin Sonar and Gesture features.

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The new menu bar is more than a little reminiscent of Android's Action Bar, however this one is still only triggered when you press the menu button, so it's not quite as handy.