Our inaugural Monthly Home Screen Challenge for the month of October was a great success. So much so that we decided to keep the challenge going, and we got some awesome submissions for November. As always, it was tricky picking a winner, and after much deliberation we finally settled on Hotmann, who came up with an interesting take on the periodic table.
Just like last month's challenge, we have taken the winning submission and broken it down into its basic components for your reading/designing pleasure.
In a reassuring blog post, Cyanogen recently told readers that "things are slowly starting to come together," regarding progress on the hotly anticipated Cyanogenmod 9, which is based on Android 4.0.
The entry goes on to explain that the devices most likely to see CM9 first are those based on OMAP4, MSM8660/7X30, and Exynos chips, as well as a few Tegra 2 tablets (including the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and ASUS Transformer).
Amazon has begun pushing a software update to Kindle Fire owners, updating the tablet's software to version 6.2. The online shopping giant kept quiet about just what the update included however. Given this (lack of) information, the real story here is that the update breaks root. Additionally, the Fire is configured to update automatically over WiFi, and there isn't an immediately apparent way to stop it.
So you're doing a mockup in Photoshop, and you want to see it on your device. You've got to save it, email it to yourself, and open it on your phone, right? Not Anymore. Today, Google - well, Roman Nurik, a guy who works at Google - released "Android Design Preview," a little utility that will mirror your screen over ADB.
The app has a box that matches the resolution of your device, just start it up, stick it the alignment box over your Photoshop mockup, and you have a live preview of your work.
One of the most prominent new features on the Galaxy Nexus, and Ice Cream Sandwich, is that the soft-keys are displayed right on the screen. While the notion is a sound one, there will always be those who miss some of the legacy features left behind. In this case, those would be the Menu and Search keys, stalwarts of Android's interface paradigm since its release with the G1. What was once four buttons - Home, Menu, Back, Search* - has been whittled down to just Home and Back, along with the introduction of the new multitasking-purposed App Switcher button.
Dear Android Custom ROM developers: I love most of you. Really. You're part of what makes Android so awesome, because you're so enthusiastic about it, and about making it better. Because of you, we have awesome things like CyanogenMod.
I want to give you some numbers. Let's just look at some popular Android devices:
ODIN is a handy, yet powerful tool for Android-powered Samsung devices that allows users to flash firmware updates and kernels using a relatively simple interface.
Looking to channel the power of the ODIN tool into something a bit more, well, mobile, developer Chainfire has released Mobile ODIN, a tool that allows rooted users to flash firmware straight from the app's interface.
What's more, Mobile ODIN Pro comes with a tool called EverRoot, which will ensure that no matter what you're flashing, you'll maintain root privileges, even if you're attempting to update your device with a leaked version of official firmware.
You might remember this video, which cropped up earlier this month, showing off an Android-powered contraption that mixed drinks automatically. Well, it would appear that the device, lovingly named iZac, (after a barbot from the popular show Futurama) has made its official debut, mixing real cocktails for patrons at the Creative Sandbox in Sydney.
Right now, iZac can handle dispensing up to six liquids, and the Android interface includes an "I'm Feeling Lucky" option, which ostensibly creates a totally random concoction for those feeling bold.
This diminutive little guy is more than meets the eye. It weighs 21 grams, which is the same as the bag of the Cotton Candy it is codenamed after. The unassuming USB stick is actually an Android 2.3 Gingerbread powered device that packs a wallop. Here are its specs:
Dual-core 1.2-GHz Samsung Exynos ARM CPU
microSD card slot
The magic happens when you plug Cotton Candy into a Windows or OSX device.