Android is a Linux-based platform, and it is clearly a phenomenon. The popular mobile operating system recently reached an amazing threshold of 900,000 user activations per day! In 2010, Mashable reported that there were 10,199 Android developers in a developer database, and that number has certainly grown since then. Unlike Apple’s IOS and Microsoft’s Windows Phone ecosystems, Android allows and encourages development on diverse operating systems such as GNU/Linux, Windows, and Mac. This has led to a great deal of interest in developing Android apps on GNU/Linux distros such as Fedora, Ubuntu, Debian, and Mint. In this edition of the Linux Week in Review, I will shine a high powered laser on the growing use of Fedora to create rich Android applications.
The Fedora Project Supports Android
Since 2003, Red Hat has sponsored the Fedora Project, a non-profit organization founded by University of Hawaii computer science student Warren Togami Jr. In late 2002. The Fedora Project coordinates the development of the Fedora Linux OS. Android’s popularity made it too big to ignore, so several years ago, the Fedora Project set up a how-to wiki that delineated how to set up an Android development environment on Fedora. After years of watching from the sidelines, I could not wait any longer. As a computer programmer myself, I HAD TO jump into the Android fray. I have used Fedora as my primary operating system since the very beginning, so it was a no-brainer deciding to do my Adroid coding on my Fedora 17 system. I have written code in C++, so shifting over to writing Android apps in the similar Java programming language would not be hard. When I started doing my research, I found the Fedora Project’s Android wiki. That wiki is here:
Getting the Android development environment up and running on Fedora 17 required 3 basic steps:
- Downloading and installing the Eclipse IDE.
- Downloading and installing the Android plugin for Eclipse.
- Doing some post install configuration.
Items 1 and 2 were pretty easy, but item 3 proved to be quite challenging. In the end, I prevailed and I made a video tutorial to make the experience easier for other Fedora users looking to scratch their Android itch. I could not be happier with my Fedora 17 Android setup, and I look forward to reporting the delivery of my first Android app soon. Here is my Fedora 17 Android tutorial.
I had no interest in using Oracle’s proprietary Java virtual machine, so I committed myself to using the open source OpenJDK platform with the Hotspot Java VM. I have had no problems to report so far. I was able to easily write, compile, and run Java code on Fedora 17 with Eclipse and OpenJDK.
Linus Flips Off Nvidia
I could not end TLWIR 40 without commenting on Linus Torvalds giving the middle digit to Nvidia. All that I can say is that Linus Torvalds is my hero. Cowardly leaders who are bought by large companies should be VERY afraid. Those that make a living screwing the consumer by accepting any rubbish peddled by companies should take note on how a REAL leader deals with problems. Linus was direct and to the point, and I guarantee you that Nvidia noticed. Perhaps we will finally see some attention paid to the GNU/Linux community by Nvidia. Only time will tell. Here is the compelling Q&A session with Linus. If you just want to skip ahead to the infamous event, skip forward to +48 minutes.
Fedora 17 appears to be a great platform from which to create Android applications based on my first impressions. I’m sure that there will be some challenges as I press forward, but I have no doubt that I will deliver my first Android application very soon. Thank you for reading the Linux Week in Review 40. I look forward to seeing you next time!