Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Video chat? What kind of idea is that? (Score 1) 102

by mangino (#36675108) Attached to: Facebook Announces Video Calling With Skype

Really? Facetime a flop? Do you have kids? Do you live apart from Family? My family loves Facetime. I can follow my kids around with a phone much more easily than a computer so that Grandma and Granpa can watch them play. I wouldn't expect people to make video calls all the time, but it sure makes family seem closer.

Comment: Re:Bug? (Score 4, Informative) 318

by mangino (#35954348) Attached to: Apple Updating iOS To Address Privacy Concerns

I don't know that I agree with this. I've worked building software for more than 15 years and I can tell you that the likelihood of somebody accurately capturing something like this in a requirements document is very close to zero. After all, this isn't a feature we're talking about, it's an implementation detail of a performance optimization. The requirement would likely be something like

"Must be able to detect a location within 0.2s if wifi is active or can locate at least 3 cell tower ids"

the rest is how the programmer chose to make it work. If you are creating requirements to the level of detail needed to fully specify purge behavior of a cache database, you're never going to finish your requirements document.

Comment: Re:Update (Score 1) 165

by mangino (#35347384) Attached to: RIM Does Not Want PlayBook Devs, Complains One Potential Developer

If you don't continuously test, you're not doing it right. Maybe I'm biased because I practice TDD.

Let's say you're right and that it takes me 5 iterations to test and get the result right. Now I have at least 6 different resolutions to test on for android, and at least 3 different skins for the device maker. That's about 18 different devices I need to test. Each one requires launching a new emulator. If I need to make a change for any emulator (for example, the red button on Motoblur doesn't look right or the strok handling on HTC sense is different) I get to do it again.

Now let's talk data. What does the UI look like with a lot of data, with little data, with pathologic data? Each of those requires testing on each version.

Suddenly, we have a combinatorial explosion. This where I see the big problem with android fragmentation.

Comment: Re:Update (Score 3, Insightful) 165

by mangino (#35323546) Attached to: RIM Does Not Want PlayBook Devs, Complains One Potential Developer

It's not 20 minutes more, it's an hour of installation. At first, the mac instructions had you download the windows version of VMWare Fusion. To even be able to try out the sdk costs $80 on a mac. Note that you can get started developing for iOS at no cost with a single download.

As a developer, little time sinks can make a big difference. For example, building and running my app on the iPad simulator takes about 5 seconds. It's easy to test iterations and small tweaks to the UI. On Android with the honeycomb emulator, it takes more than a minute (assuming the emulator is running, it takes about 3 minutes for the emulator to start on a dual quad core box with 16G of ram) I never found out on the Playbook, since I don't want to spend money buying an emulator for a currently vapor product.

(accidentally posted as AC the first time)

Comment: Re:Mainly the five most recent releases (Score 1) 386

by mangino (#33896740) Attached to: Devs Grapple With 100+ Versions of Android

True, but the OS versions don't tell the whole story. Here's an example:

On stock android, creating a polygon with the paint style FILL_AND_STROKE will both fill the polygon and stoke the outside. On motoblur, it just strokes the polygon. On stock android, using FILL will render nothing if a polygon is rendered on a clipping boundary. On motoblur, it is displayed. Unless you actively test on different carrier roms, you will have lots of these little issues. For motoblur it isn't a huge deal since they make an emulator, but not all customizations are available as emulators.

I do both Android and iPhone development. There are some really nice things about Android, but the huge amount of fragmentation makes developing a polished UI very difficult.

% APL is a natural extension of assembler language programming; ...and is best for educational purposes. -- A. Perlis