August 1, 2010

My first steps in the world of Android

Five years ago I was one of the first to buy a smartphone as I had spotted many possibilities for using at work, having all medical textbooks on a small electronical device being just one of these. With the Iphone evolution everyone now has a smartphone and I am amazed at those still anchoring their pockets with kilos of textbooks.
Being fan of everything open-source (and Google actually) I was excited about Android already from the beginning. It's incredible sales numbers ("200.000 Android units sold each day") and ever increasing user base witness a new coming OS that might just swipe away competitors. And it's happening for a reason. This monster is Google based and as such has a huge group of experienced engineers and programmers which are original, grass root computer nerds and just love making good better. Also Android is "open source" and is it's core component is made of Linux. This means everyone can see the underlying code and make changes and updates as necessary and so thousands and thousands of programmers of the world are working to make Android better every minute. The perfect OS for quick and robust updates, huge database of applications and lot's of options to customize and improve to my own preference.

So this week I grabbed a Samsung Galaxy i9000. As expected it's an amazing device and has functions I had never imagined to see in a "telephone". Like walking around in my neighborhood and seeing on my phone what houses are for sale and at what price ("Layar" app, video below) - even what people in those houses have just recently Twittered (or Buzzed - that's Google's uprising social web)! What now remains to be discovered is how to apply all this technology to real life situations and work. My first impression is that I've just had an indispensable tool for improving my "Get things done" lifestyle (to be blogged later!); using otherwise wasted minutes for production and creativity, automatizing the boring parts in my life and improving efficiency in general. Until then, the feeling is a "Welcome to the Matrix" one!

Layar app in action:

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