DroidCon Is Coming to Montreal

Credits: DroidCon

If you’re an Android Developer from Montreal or anywhere in “La Belle Province”, mark the date: April 9th and 10th, 2015! DroidCon is coming to Montreal at the Palais Des Congrès!

Make sure to follow @DroidconMTL on Twitter, and to like their Facebook page to be updated about the DroidCon Montreal event.

Also, if you are interested to give a talk at the conference, the Call for Papers is now open until March 8th, 2015.

I hope to meet you there!

Writing Progress Update #1

Credits: WikipediaNow that my blog is online, I am going to share with you updates on the writing progress regularly.

If you visited the book’s website at the beginning of this project, when it started back in July, you may have noticed that the site style changed since. Indeed, I have made several changes in recent weeks, including : the use of a responsive framework (ZURB Foundation), adding a blog section (Octopress) and, most importantly, continuous publication with Jenkins! Now, a simple git push of my website, blog or book repos launch the build, and automatically publish the new content on the Web. I’m pretty happy by the results.

After all, I had to lead by example because in my book I’ll beat your ears with the “Don’t Repeat Yourself” (DRY) principle–a lot!

That said, the implementation of these tools delayed me quite a bit with the writing. As a result, I have not written lately, apart from an update of the preface to use Android Lollipop to refer to the latest release of Android, instead of just Android L

With the Christmas holidays approaching, I intend to enjoy my free time to write a few–and more technical–chapters. I’ll also give you some “behind the scene” details about the writing process of the book. For example, I will share with you the book download statistics and other vanity metrics.

I will communicate the announcement of new posts via the mailing list and the Google+ Community. So, if you are not already registered, it’s time to do it!

The Reddit Effect

Credits: Andie712b (Flickr)So far, I have promoted my book mainly on social media and I’ve seen great response from Android developers.

Since I switched to a CC-BY-SA license for my eBook last month, I’ve seen downloads increase steadily with about 10-15 new download every day.

That was before last night!

Yesterday evening, before going to bed, I posted a link on reddit under the Android category to promote my book. My book had 230 downloads when I got to sleep. I got up this morning with more than a thousand downloads!

I found out later that morning that my post on reddit received many votes, and attracted many Android developers.

I’m pretty happy with the results. The 1000 downloads milestone was pretty far for me but, wow, Internet, you still impress me today!

How to Free Your Work

I’m progressing well with the writing of the eBook. I write approximately a chapter a week while commuting (hint: I’m not the driver!), and during the evenings. I hope to keep up this pace!

Last week, I had a discussion with my friend Karl Fogel about the writing process of a technical book. He brought up the question:

Do you want your book to be under a free (open source) license? That is, Creative Commons Attribution, or Attribution-ShareAlike?

I must admit that idea did not crossed my mind. I was thinking more of a traditional approach that is : you publish your book, the reader finds it somehow, and he gives you money if your sale speech is convincing enough. The approach proposed by Karl is interesting because I want to put my book in the more hands possible, and open source is all about sharing. The idea of giving my eBook for free and to expect some financial benefits in return may seem strange. Though, it was strange for me!

Then I followed an intersting link that Karl sent me: http://questioncopyright.org/how_to_free_your_work

That reading changed my perception of “free” (as in freedom not as in free beer). Then the question “Will I really want to give my book for free?” became “How will I release my book as open source?”

Next step will be to change my website to offer the book for free and to contact the people who pre-ordered the book and ask them if they want their money back since there will be no more paid copies, only CC-BY-SA ones.

Free Sample of Agile Android Software Development

3d book coverI’m offering an extract of my upcoming eBook “Agile Android Sofware Development” as a free download. You can get it from the book webpage (click on the blue button): http://agiledroid.com

A draft of the table of contents is also included in the sample, but is, of course, subject to changes. However, the topics covered should be the same in the released version of the book.

I hope you will enjoy the read!

Agile Android Software Development Book Announcement

An image of a very cute puppyI’ve programmed on Android for 2 years now. I’ve learn mostly by reading books. I’ve always loved Android openness, architecture and community. The fact that I can program on whatever OS I want is a big plus for me. I use Linux to program my Android apps but, if I wish, I could program on a Mac or even on Windows. It doesn’t matter : it’s all the same tools and they are free whatever the plateform you develop on.

But, while learning and reading books on Android, I did find many good books but none that was explaining how to write unit test, how to use TDD (Test Driven Development) or BDD (Behavior Driven Development) or to use agile techniques for developing Android applications. Even so those tools exist for Android as they do for Java, Ruby or other modern development languages they are not mentionned in any Android programming book. There is some scarce information available on the Internet if you’re ready to waste hours searching in forums, mailing lists and such…

No easy reference for a developer wanting to use agile techniques on Android was available until this day. I have decided to write down my ideas and what I found while developping my next Android game using agile tools and process. The results of my experiment and finds will be available in an ebook that I will publish by the end of this year.

if you have ideas or comments, some subjects you would like to see in my upcoming book, please, let me know.

For more details, you can visit the book official website : http://www.agiledroid.com

Thanks for reading.