Sunday, October 20, 2013

Android Studio Gotchas

I decided to carry on with some programming today using the Android Studio EAP. On opening the IDE there was a prompt to update to version 0.3.0 so I chose to update and restart. Subsequently much of my time was spent trying to work out why my project wouldn't build anymore.

The first problem was a simple fix. I prefer to use my local Gradle distribution rather than a Gradle Wrapper so I downloaded the latest version (1.8) and changed my GRADLE_HOME environment variable to point to the new version and restarted Android Studio.

The next problem was that the appcompat-v7 dependency could not be resolved. The Android Support Library package is needed for backwards compatibility without it my project will not build. When running the Android SDK manager from the terminal I could see that it was installed and up to date. This baffled me for some time, then I found that Android Studio wasn't actually using the Android SDK that I have installed on my system. The IDE has its own Android SDK bundled. I personally don't like this as I don't think the SDK belongs in the installation of Android Studio. I want the flexibility to chose where my SDK is installed. Once I realised that the SDK on my system path and the SDK being used by Android Studio were not the same it was easy to fix. Use the IDE to open the SDK Manager under the tools menu, then once updated restart the IDE.

Sunday, October 06, 2013

9 years of Ubuntu

I've had to move home twice in the last 12 months and still have a few boxes left to sort out. Whilst unpacking some books the other day I came across the installation cd for Ubuntu 5.04 (Hoary Hedgehog) which came with issue 53 of Linux Magazine. It was Canonicals second release.

At the time I'd been reading about Linux, BSD, and Solaris as I wanted something different from the norm. I found Linux quite frustrating back then (and still do sometimes) and like many others that try it for the first time I only lasted a couple of weeks before returning to the all familiar Windows XP.

I still liked the idea of using open-source software though. So it wasn't long before I was testing the water again from the safety of a virtual machine, then moving onto dual booting.

These days most of my computers run Linux, generally either Ubuntu or Fedora. I made the transition around three years ago and despite the occasional problem, I'm happy with the decision. Yesterday I updated the computer in my lounge to Ubuntu 13.10, which means it's over eight years since I tried Ubuntu for the first time. Canonical released Ubuntu 4.10 (Warty Warthog) in Oct 2004 so this latest version marks their ninth anniversary. In that time they've made a real impact in the Linux community and I hope they continue to do well.