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[Updated: Here Are The Winners!] Book Giveaway #15: Win One Of Ten Copies Of "Android Apps With App Inventor," Easily Build Apps Like A Pro, Profit

Those of you from the early days of Android may remember App Inventor - a Google project that allowed people to create apps for Android by dragging and dropping bits of code - no programming experience required. More recently, Google transferred the App Inventor to MIT, where it was open sourced. But the App Inventor (AI) is still a bit tricky to just open and jump right in to - a proper guide through the AI would allow someone to utilize its full potential, and create more complex apps in less time.

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Mika Mobile's Decision To Stop Making Games For Android Raises Troubling Questions And Concerns About Developing For The Platform

If you've never heard of Mika Mobile, that's not a huge surprise - they're a small, but fairly successful mobile game developer that focuses primarily on iOS. Their number one title (in terms of recent sales) is Zombieville USA 2, which has over 68,000 ratings on the App Store, and the most recent version of the game has averaged 5 stars. So we're clear, that's no small feat.

Their first game, Zombieville USA, was released for Android last July.

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SetCPU Updated To 2.3, Brings Major UI Overhaul, Many Related Improvements

To any hardcore modder, overclocking (or underclocking) your CPU is one of the best ways to get the most from your device. While some popular ROMs now have the ability to control your CPU baked in, many don't - and in the earlier days, virtually none did. Enter SetCPU - the de facto standard.

The app has long been a favorite, picking up 100,000-500,000 downloads at $1.99 and over 17,000 ratings for an average of 4.5 stars.

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[Webdev Hotness] Adobe Releases Shadow, A Tool For Synchronized Browsing And Remote Debugging Between Your Desktop And Multiple Android Devices

Adobe has unveiled Shadow, a new way for front-end web developers that aims to make designing and testing your website layouts on multiple screen sizes an absolute breeze. Shadow is actually a collection of tools consisting of:

Once you install the two desktop components on your computer and the mobile apps on all your development devices, you simply pair each one via a simple pin into a single network of sorts, and voila - say hello to synchronized browsing and refreshing in Chrome.

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[Updated] Download: CyanogenMod 9 Nightlies Come To Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (Wi-Fi, I/O Edition, T-Mo), Galaxy S II, ASUS Transformers (Original TF101 & Prime TF201)

Last week, the CyanogenMod team launched the first CM9 nightly builds for the Galaxy Nexus, Nexus S, and Motorola XOOM. As of today, the following devices also have CM9 nightly builds available:

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Wi-Fi and I/O Edition (download: p4wifi) - yay for the latter, as it seems Samsung completely abandoned it - I believe mine is still running 3.1 with no updates in sight.
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Unofficial Music API Close To Completion, Could Soon Allow Apps To Integrate With Google Music

A few days ago, we heard unofficial reports that Google was disappointed with the performance of Music thus far. While it's barely been out for a full quarter to date, there have been a few major factors holding the service back. In my opinion, one of the biggest factors holding it back thus far is the lack of an API - or, in English: third-party app support for the service. Luckily, a developer by the name of Simon Weber read the post about Google Music and got in touch a few days ago to let me know that he had a solution to the problem: an unofficial API he's been working on.

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First Official CM9 Nightlies Now Available For Galaxy Nexus GSM/CDMA, Nexus S GSM/CDMA, And Motorola Xoom Wi-Fi/LTE

Just under a week after receiving almost unprecedented support from the Android community to fund the purchase of new build servers, the CM team has begun pumping out CM9 nightlies for a handful of devices. There's no question - the CM team is moving quickly, and the release of so many nightlies in such a short time span is exciting, to say the least.

Koushik Dutta, in a Google+ post earlier this evening, expressed appreciation, confirming that CyanogenMod "was able to purchase 3 top of the line, ridiculously geared, build servers," which will soon have an automatic build schedule.

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For Developers: ADT 17 And SDK Tools r17 Previews Available For Download, Now With Network Usage, Fixed Proguard, Enhanced Lint, And More

In preparation for the upcoming final releases, the Android team today released ADT 17-preview (Android Developer Tools plugin for Eclipse) and SDK Tools r17-preview with the following improvements that eager developers can try out without waiting any longer.

What's New

Out of all the additions and changes, I'm mostly excited about the new network usage tool, the fix for the dreaded "Conversion to Dalvik format failed with error 1" error when trying to use Proguard (oh, how many hours I wasted on this one), and the end to default ids for various layout elements.

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PSA: California's New App Privacy Policy Requirement Just Made Life Harder For Developers Everywhere, Here's What You Need To Know

Privacy is a good thing in the digital world - you'll get no argument from me. I don't like my data floating around in cyberspace without my consent, but I also realize that much of what makes the internet (and computing generally) so great is that I can use my own judgment to decide who I will and will not trust with my information.

Things like app permissions, which have been a part of the Android package installation process for quite some time, are nice, but let's face it: 95% of us don't read them.

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ASUS Releases Transformer Prime Bootloader Unlock Software, Now Available For Download

Early last month, it was revealed to much outcry that the Transformer Prime had a locked bootloader. Angry customers took to the forums to vent and started a petition to get Asus to change its stance. And just 24 hours later, that's what happened, with Asus promising an unlock tool down the road.

Today Asus delivered, with the unlock tool hitting the TP's support site:

2012-02-22 08h14_58

TL;DR: Caveat emptor.

The company strongly suggests customers stay away from unlocking the bootloader, stating:

You also acknowledge ASUS does not guarantee service satisfaction to any Revised Product, including events involving paid service requested by you to be performed to the Revised Product.

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