Category: Uncategorized

Android Debug Bridge (ABD) Beginner’s Guide

ADB (Android Debug Bridge) is a fancy tool that Google has made available to Android users and developers. It is part of the Android SDK (Software Development Kit).  Basically it creates a connection (Bridge) between the Android and the computer. It was originally used as a tool to achieve root on the phone, and to be able to do some additional functions, similar to a linux command line.  A lot of the same commands can be done on the phone through a terminal emulator program (right on the phone), it is so much easier to be able to type it all on a full sized keyboard (plus it makes you feel more like a computer nerd).

Although all of this may seem a little complicated at first it is very simple to setup and use.  At the bare minimum you just have to download the software, install it (I usually install it to c:android), change a setting on your phone (See “Phone Settings” below) and plug the phone and computer into the USB cable. A very simple installer has been put together entitled ADB for Dummies by AndroidSamurai that provides an installer that puts all the files in the right places.  There is a simple command you can do to verify that everything is installed properly.  Open up a command prompt (Start -> Run -> CMD) and switch to the “Tools” folder (wherever you installed the above mentioned software) and type the following command:

adb devices

You should see a long string that will be the ID number of your phone.  You don’t need to memorize it, you just need to see it there to know that the computer properly sees the phone. If you don’t see it, it is most likely an issue with a driver.  Go to the manufacturers site, or simply search google for the manufacturer and the word driver.

Phone Settings – Another troubleshooting step is to make sure the phone is setup for the USB connection. To do this all you have to do (on the phone) is:
Settings -> Applications -> Development -> USB Debugging (Make sure it is checked)  That’s it!

Once you have it installed there are a few cool things you can do with it. Let’s say you want to make a backup of all the apps on your phone.  All you have to do is key in this command:

adb pull /data/app ./

This will backup all the .APK files so you can reinstall them at a later time.  So now lets show you how to do the restore.  Put your APK files all into a single folder (c:apps), navigate to that folder and type in this command:

adb install *.apk

How about changing your boot logo?  Easy as can be…  Find a boot animation on the web that you want to use, and make sure it is a .ZIP file (that you have no need to open or modify, because it probably won’t work if you do) and rename it bootanimation.zip.  Copy the bootanimation.zip file to your “Tools” folder inside your Android SDK installation.  Finally type the following 2 commands to copy it to the phone:

adb shell mount -o rw,remount /dev/block/mtdblock3 /system
adb push pirate_bootanimation.zip /system/media/bootanimation.zipck/mtdblock3 /system
adb reboot

 Watch the phone screen and you should see the new boot logo!

So this is a brief look at what ADB does, and how to get it.  For more information check out the official Android ADB site and learn all you can on it.  Also remember to backup before messing around too much.  We are not responsible for data loss!


Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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Farkle Dice Deluxe – Free Amazon Appstore App for 7/23/11

Name: Farkle Dice Deluxe

Description:
A dice game with a diffference
Farkle Dice Deluxe (Ad-Free) is an exciting, fast-paced dice game for two to four players. Race to 10,000 points as you play against the computer or your friends. You’ll have hours of entertainment challenging the computer and your family. Roll the dice to earn big points. That one lucky combination could put you in the lead.

This Deluxe version does not have ads. Farkle Dice is optimized for both phones and tablets.

Fun and Friendly
Farkle Dice has beautiful artwork, engaging sound, and is both fun to play and user-friendly. Both new and experienced players will love the clarity of the scoreboard and how quickly you can jam out a game while in a meeting (before someone notices).

One hundred percent dice randomization prevents cheating. Each roll uses a robust randomization algorithm, meaning the computer player has the same chance you do. Sometimes you have to take that extra risk and roll again.

Watch for the Arrows–Or Turn Them Off
The rules for Farkle Dice are found by tapping Menu, then How to Play. The Pass button becomes active when you select at least one scoring dice. The dice with the arrows above them can be used for scoring. You can turn off the arrows in settings.

Farkle Dice is also known as Zonk, Zilch, 5,000, 10,000, Wimpout, Hot, Piffle, and Farkel.

Download Link: http://goo.gl/3BeCE

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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Delicious – Emily’s Taste of Fame – Amazon Appstore Free App of the Day 7/22/11

A fast paced restaurant game that has a ton of levels and different locations to keep you interested.Save yourself a few bucks ($3) and download it today!

Name: Delicious – Emily’s Taste of Fame
Description:
Emily and her friend are driving through a strange town when–oh no!–their car breaks down. They don’t have the cash to fix it, so a kindly cafe owner says they can waitress in her place for a few days to earn the money they need. Simple, right?

Going Solo
Well, it might have been if Emily’s friend hadn’t gotten sick. She’ll have to go it alone. Betty quickly trains her and then leaves. Ulp.The first customer walks in. “Here’s your coffee–that’ll be a dollar.” Then another customer enters the cafe. Then two more. Suddenly Emily is running around trying to serve everyone in a timely manner. It’s only her first morning! Can you help Emily handle the rush?.

Game Tips
Delicious-Emily’s Taste of Fame is an entertaining and engrossing game for Android by Real Networks. You quickly learn that waitressing is a tough job. If Emily can do it well she’ll have happy customers and earn her big tips. If she falls behind… let’s just say she might have to work for a long while to get enough money to repair her car.

Help Emily collect trophies such as The Happy Pill, awarded after handling the payments of 500 happy customers. You can earn a variety other achievements, including Break-an-Egg (avoid dropping any eggs in single day), The Rat Pack (get rid of 50 pesky mice), and even a chance to become a TV star! Good luck!

Download Link: http://goo.gl/PlWwT (Amazon)

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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Keyboard Options

Typing on an all touch keyboard can be a chore to learn, especially if you have a phone that is all touch. Every manufacturer has their own keyboard they use so it can even be confusing if you upgrade phones.  Most phones also have the stock android keyboard installed, so if you decide to try that you can easily switch to it and try it out. But how?
To switch keyboards all you have to do is go into an app that has a spot to type, for example I will use the “Messaging” app. Simply press and hold on the area where you would be typing and look for a popup that says “input method”. When you choose that it will give you a list of installed keyboards.

So what if it doesn’t show any keyboard installed? First double check in your settings menu under “language and keyboard” and see what is listed there. If there isn’t a check mark next to an option, it won’t show up in the “input method” list.

So now you are probably asking yourself, “Where can I try out more keyboards?”. And the answer to that lies in the rest of this post.  Here are a few keyboard apps to try out and see what you think.  (Plus a bonus Amazon Appstore free keyboard of the day for 7/21/11.)

Name: SwiftKey X
Description:
SwiftKey X is a next-generation AI keyboard, now with unrivaled prediction and personalization.

SwiftKey X for smartphones builds on TouchType’s SwiftKey keyboard to offer cloud personalization, a new prediction engine, and a host of new UI improvements.

Using artificial intelligence breakthroughs, the SwiftKey X keyboard accurately predicts your most likely next word based on what you’ve already written. It can also scan your sent messages, and learn as you use it to make predictions even more accurately over time. The more you get to know your SwiftKey keyboard, the more it will get to know you.

Download Link: http://goo.gl/VwvNj (Amazon)

Name: Keyboard from Android 2.3
Description:
If your phone isn’t updated to gingerbread yet you can get the keyboard from 2.3 and load it right on your phone.
Features:
1. Multitouch keyboard
2. User dictionary, built-in dictionary
3. Auto correction
4. Redesigned and optimized keyboard layout and style
5. Speech to text
6. Split main keyboard app and dictionaries.
Download Link: http://goo.gl/ms99g

Name: Better keyboard 8
Description:
Better keyboard is the best and the most popular keyboard on the android market
Supports many languages:
Arabic, Czech, Danish, Deutsch, English, Espanol, Finnish, French, Hungarian, Hebrew, Italiano, Korean, Netherlands, Norwegian, Norwegian (Bokmål), Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovenian, Swedish
Download Link: http://goo.gl/gbEBT

Name: Perfect keyboard
Description:
Take command of your Android device’s touchpad keypad with a Perfect and smart Keyboard for android. You can customize the look of the keyboard with eight different themes and add additional functionality to your device. Perfect Keyboard lets you use custom dictionaries, control background and text colors, and adjust the keyboard’s vibration density. In short, Perfect Keyboard allows you to setup your Android phone or tablet’s touchpad keyboard so that it works best for you.
Note: Perfect Keyboard works only on Android 2.2 and up
Download Link: http://goo.gl/W9BSX

Name: Swype Beta
Description:
-Swype v3 introduces two major new features: Tap Correction and Horizontal Word Choice List
-Our Tap Correction engine utilizes many of the concepts that make swyping so accurate. Seamlessly go from typing to swyping and back without missing a beat!
-The Horizontal Word Choice List replaces our popup word choice window, giving users an experience more in-line with evolving Android standards. It also makes dictionary control and word selection faster and easier.
-Swype v3 is available for devices with HVGA, WVGA, FWVGA, QVGA, WQVGA, WSVGA, qHD screen sizes
-Introducing a special Honeycomb-only WXGA version for Android tablets, with features like “moveable keyboard” that you won’t find anywhere else!
-To see which languages are supported on your device, check the language and resolution table
-Improved licensing: Swype will no longer be disabled after a reboot on some devices; added support for devices that don’t have a cellular radio (wifi-only tablets); no more license failures for CDMA devices in airplane mode.
-Simplified registration by allowing users to authenticate their email address directly through the installer
-Too many other improvements to list! Download Swype v3 NOW to explore everything the next generation of Swype has to offer!
-Limited End User Support – mostly via our forum
-If your phone came pre-installed with Swype
-DO NOT download this beta (it won’t work)
Download Link: http://goo.gl/1yfdg

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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SwiftKey X – Free Amazon App for 7/21/11

Looking for an alternative to your stock keyboard, or possibly the preloaded Swype keyboard on your Android phone? Give this one a try, free today only! Save yourself a few bucks! (normally $3.99)

Name: SwiftKey X
Description:
SwiftKey X is a next-generation AI keyboard, now with unrivaled prediction and personalization.

SwiftKey X for smartphones builds on TouchType’s SwiftKey keyboard to offer cloud personalization, a new prediction engine, and a host of new UI improvements.

Using artificial intelligence breakthroughs, the SwiftKey X keyboard accurately predicts your most likely next word based on what you’ve already written. It can also scan your sent messages, and learn as you use it to make predictions even more accurately over time. The more you get to know your SwiftKey keyboard, the more it will get to know you.

Download Link: http://goo.gl/VwvNj (Amazon)

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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Android Ringtones – How to get/make them.

Ringtones. You would imagine the your options for ringtones would be so much better than on a normal non-smart phone, and you would be correct in that assumption. There are multiple ways to get ringtones and even multiple ways to make your own ringtones onto your phone.

For starters, the way that android organizes his ringtone management is (in my opinion) very well laid out. On your memory card there are a bunch of folders.  If you look very carefully you will see a folder called “media”.  If you don’t have one, create it.  then inside of that folder you should have an “audio” and a “video” folder.  Then inside of the “audio” folder you should see the below group of folders “alarms” “music” “notifications” and “ringtones”.  This is the place on the SD card where the Android OS looks for sounds.

So if you want to make a tone that is for a phone call put it in the “ringtones” folder.  For an alarm put it in the “alarms folder, etc.  Modern android phones (version 2 and up) will support multiple file formats.  The main ones are .ogg and mp3.  So you can manually cut down a music file with a desktop application and copy it to your phone’s memory card in this folder and you are good to go.  But wouldn’t you like something easier?

The easiest method of making a ringtone is to do it right through the "Music” icon that is preloaded on your phone.  Let’s say you are listening to your MP3 collection and you hear a song that you want to make your ringtone.  No worries, just press the menu button at the bottom of your phone (while the song is playing) andyou will see an icon called “Set as Ringtone” (see image below). That’s it.  It will do the dirty work for you – create the tone and set it as your default.  Can’t ask for an easier option. Although there is a pretty big downfall to this.  It creates the tone just for the first 30 or 40 seconds of the song.

When your phone rings you don’t always want the intro of the song (although the beginning of the pictured Radiohead song is pretty badass).  Let’s say you want the tone to start at around 2:42 when the hard part kicks in.  So you need a solution that will let you pick that certain chunk of the song and make that your tone.  That’s where RingDroid comes in.

RingDroid is an app that lets you create a start and stop point of an MP3 file and turn it into a ringtone/alarm/notification.  All right on the device, Plus it gives you an option to set it as your default tone.  The best part of the app is that it is a FREE app available from the Android Market, or through the Google Code site. See the image below:

Name: RingDroid
Description:
Create ringtones from your own music library, or record new ones on the fly!
The original open-source ringtone editor for Android, first published in 2008 and downloaded by millions of users worldwide.
Create your own ringtone, alarm, or notification sound from an existing audio file, or record a new one directly on the device.
This application is compatible with most Android devices running system versions 1.6 (‘donut’) through 2.3.x (‘gingerbread’).
Download Link: http://goo.gl/x08x0

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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Deluxe Ultra Voice Changer – Free Amazon Appstore App for 7/20/11

Haven’t you ever wanted to be able to change your voice to make it sound like a robot, alien, chipmunk, robot, or simply add echo, or make it sound all metallic. Plus did I mention you can make it sound like a robot? As a robot I have all these sounds built it, but for you humans all you have to do is download today’s Amazon free app of the day. If you grab this download today you get it for free, saving yourself a whole american dollar.

Name: Deluxe Ultra Voice Changer
Description:
Tired of the sound of your own voice? Find a new one with Deluxe Ultra Voice Changer, a fun vocal-effects app for your Android device. Enjoy 23 different voice effects in this deluxe version.

Hear yourself talk like an alien, robot, or chipmunk; play your voice backwards, sped up, slowed down, with an echo, or by using other effects. Crack yourself up or weird out your friends and family–it’s easy and fun.

23 Voices, Endless Fun

Creating crazy new voices is simple with Deluxe Ultra Voice Changer. The recording process is user friendly, and a detailed Help page answers any questions you may have as you explore all the app’s options. (For example, if you hear excessive static during playback, a helpful tip suggests that you lower your recording volume and try again.)

Keep in mind that a one-minute audio file created by this app will be about 1.3 megabytes in size. Unless you’re on an unlimited data plan with your carrier, you may want to minimize sending audio recordings via e-mail when using this app.

Download Link: http://goo.gl/KUAyq

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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FolderOrganizer – Amazon Appstore Free App for 7/19/11

Everyone likes an organized phone. Even someone as scatterbrained as me. With FolderOrganizer you can organize all the stuff that matters so you can make yourself more efficient. Efficiency at it’s best – best price that is. Get it today only for the low low price of FREE!

Name: FolderOrganizer
Description:
Want more control over the file structure of your smartphone, or would you love to be able to organize your apps, bookmarks, contacts and shortcuts the way you want?

Group items according to labels and create fully customizable folders and widgets with FolderOrganizer. You can organize apps, bookmarks, contacts and shortcuts, change folder icons, sort folder items any way you like, and make app shortcuts with custom icons and names.

FolderOrganizer Features
With hierarchical labels, easily categorize all items. You can create and edit folders, manually sort items in a label, create scrollable widgets with five items in a row, change label icons, and rename apps and change app icons.

Make sense of all the stuff on your smartphone. Get FolderOrganizer.

Download Link: http://goo.gl/zSXHP

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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Over(Under)clocking – “Why Root?” Part 3

Me: Age 7

For the 3rd installment of Root – The “What?” “Why?” “How?” I will be covering an option for root users called overclocking (or underclocking – depending on what you are looking to do).  Overclocking is the process of speeding up your processor.  In the case of a lot of phones the manufacturer will underclock the processor, essentially slowing it down a tad to give you the benefit of better battery life.  A couple of examples of this are the original Motorola Droid (Verizon) and the HTC EVO Shift (Sprint).

With overclocking you have the ability to undo what the manufacturer has done and then some.  On some devices where the manufacturer has set the speed at 500MHZ you have the ability to overclock it to 1.2GHz, or even faster.  Therefore you end up with a crazy fast phone that would have the ability to run the latest cutting edge game without having to shell out the money for a new device.

So you are probably asking what the downside to this is?  Well aside from the possibility of ruining your phone (as with anything root) you will notice a drastic decrease in the battery life. Which is why I mentioned that the manufacturers will underclock the devices to give them a battery boost.  So for the people not looking for performance, and just want to make it through the day without needing a charge on their way home from work, underclocking is a great option.

BUT: What if you could have the best of both worlds?  The ability to jump the speed up for your games and slow it way down when it’s not in use.  Well you can do that with the below apps.  Just mess around with the profiles and you can set it to do whatever you want.   Well check out the below recommended apps.

Name: Android Overclock by JRummy16
Description:
Make your device blazing fast and save battery life by using this user friendly app! You can overclock to increase speeds or underclock to save battery life. Set custom profiles to increase performance to the max.
Android Overclock also includes tons of extra tweaks and hacks to make your device truly your own. As shown on droid-life.com and other popular android news sites it is the user-friendly and easy way to fully customize your device.
Download Link: http://goo.gl/kiBRq

Name: SetCPU for Root Users
Description:
SetCPU is a tool for changing the CPU settings (capable of overclock and underclock) on a rooted Motorola Droid, Nexus One, G1, G2, Samsung Galaxy S, myTouch 4G, Motorola Xoom, or one of many other devices to improve performance or save battery.
SetCPU also allows you to set up powerful profiles to change the CPU speed under certain conditions, such as when the phone is asleep or charging, when the battery level drops below a certain point, when the phone’s temperature is too high, or during certain times of day. See the screenshots for examples of how you might set up profiles.
Download Link: http://goo.gl/hQOpU
PS:  Another thing to remember.  If you are rooted and you can’t get this to work you are going to have to do  some research on Android Kernels.

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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JogTracker Pro – Free Amazon Appstore App of the Day

I am actually excite to try this app out.  I want to do a comparison verses the Nike+ watch and chip in the shoe thing.  I know that the Nike+ thing isn’t very accurate compared to the treadmill, or actually on a path that has the distance marked.

I will do the comparison test and keep you all posted.

Name: JogTracker Pro
Description:
Keep track of your distance in miles or kilometers. Use GPS and Google Maps to help you find your way. View your jog history on the Web. Share your progress on Facebook and Twitter. Listen for voice prompts at intervals.
Download Link: http://goo.gl/vMQxU

Some “Best of the Best” accessories for your Android phone:

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