Canonical just unveiled a version of Ubuntu that has a smartphone “skin” converting it to an Android-like OS. When the device is connected to a monitor, keyboard and mouse, it works as a normal PC (with Linux). I wonder how it works with the touch-enabled screens and how it handles interrupts from voice calls and text messages. Battery management is another big concern…
If you are a developer on a tight budget and need access to various Android environments, there is now a solution. Thanks to the Android-x86 Project team you can have your own Android PC or even better a virtualized environment (or two, or more) to test your apps. You can install Android-x86 next to a Windows installation on an NTFS filesystem but I prefer and recommend to run it alone on a PC or under VirtualBox. I also liked the fact that my multitool Thinkpad X61t is supported (it also runs MacOSX!).
The current version is based on Android 2.2.2 (Froyo branch). Kernel is updated to 2.6.38. For more information, have a look here: Android-x86 – Porting Android to x86.
It’s just a few days after I wrote about the Mono project and seems that my timing was not very good. The whole team was “disassembled” in the beginning of May due to the takeover of Novell by Attachmate. Mono is the implementation of the .NET platform for Linux.
Fortunately Miguel de Izaca, the developer in charge of the project, took everything under a new startup called Xamarin and they have already started coding again. They promise us a commercial .NET solution for iOS and Android (probably MonoTouch under a new brand name), full support of the open source Mono and Moonlight (the Silverlight implementation) projects and a possible implementation of Moonlight for mobile devices and the Mac appstore. All Novell’s proprietary code will be rewritten. Waiting eagerly…
You may have not noticed it but nobody is talking about Linux any more (which by the way is not a good thing, because I do not consider a closed and controlled system like MacOSX a competitor of Windows – Linux could offer much more).
The last time that I heard “normal” people talking about Linux was when netbooks where everybody’s aspiration. Netbooks with Linux – because soon they realised that netbooks with Windows could run their favourite (or mandatory) applications. That was more than two years ago in late 2008. The Linux netbook era lasted for about a year and a half…
Now we (almost) all wait for the latest “tablet” with Android. Some wait for a Windows tablet but we need some time to have something decent and remarkable. Android is based on Linux but who knows that? The name of the OS is Android and the company is Google. Who even knows that Google bought the company that developed Android and its star developer Andy Rubin (who by the way had previously founded Danger, the company that cost Microsoft about a billion dollars) back in 2005? There is nothing there for a consumer to know and devs seems to have a very short memory nowadays.
No wonder why Novell has turned the efforts of its Mono project team from Linux to Android. Moonlight is the open source implementation of Microsoft’s Silverlight for the Linux platform (actually, Mono is the implementation of .NET Framework based on the ECMA standards for C# and the Common Language Runtime). Now, it’s the immplementation for the Android platform which makes even more sense. Novell also unveiled MonoDroid, a developer tool for .Net development for Android. Do the older guys remember the fights between Novell and Microsoft? These times have passed and unholy alliances have emerged.
Read the whole article here: Novell’s Moonlight shines on Google Android | Application Development – InfoWorld.