As youâ€™ve probably seen in the past.Â I like to rant and rave about things.Â Iâ€™m not one for drama in general and hate all the He said, She said bantering that goes on in the Android community.Â Iâ€™ve been outspoken recently about the fragmentation of the Android community and how difficult itâ€™s becoming to find what you need for your Android device without searching through piles and piles of forums, tweets and wherever else you go to find your info.
Centralized Release repository
You may have seen my latest call for help regarding a centralized release repository.Â You may also say that we have something already in the AndroidSPIN ROM database.Â Well we do, kind of, but itâ€™s becoming an impossible task to maintain because itâ€™s heading down the same road as everything else, fragmentation.Â The only way for something like this to work is with the buy in from the community and mainly the developers.Â Everyone is trying to entice the developer to their site, justifiably, as everyone wants the best developer on their site so the people will come and use it.
A centralized repository is not intended to take away the people from those sites; it becomes an index to those sites and would hopefully help those sites get more traffic.Â The current AndroidSPIN ROM database is already an index.Â Go into any ROM and Click the ROM Homepage link and it takes you to the site where the developer hosts that ROM.Â This is what we need, but on a bigger scale.
We are already creating a completely new Release database for MobileTweek that will support any file type at all.Â You may also have seen my call to create a team of leading Android community specialists to help define more of how that could work.Â One concept is the creation of a common update application for Android devices in the vein of Cyanogens already excellent CyanogenMOD Update but one that will work for any ROM in the release database.
I started a thread in AndroidSPIN forums which you can find at:
Itâ€™s hard for me to push this as many people see this as just another way for me to promote AndroidSPIN or MobileTweek, I can assure you that itâ€™s not my goal and youâ€™ll have to take my word for that.
If you have a spare minute, take a look at the thread linked above, tell your favorite developer how awesome this would be and letâ€™s try to do something.Â This would benefit the whole Android community.
The state of Android functionality
I for one feel that Android is getting way too many new versions with lots of flashy enhancements in the graphics front, new menu systems, re-organizations of the setup system and more.Â Yes, itâ€™s getting better with every release but I feel that the core functionality is being ignored.Â With more and more regulations and restrictions on the use of cell phones while driving, why isnâ€™t the core hands free functionality being enhance more.Â Yes, they are adding voice dictation and voice dialing has been there for a long time, but they all still require some form of physical interaction.Â My Bluetooth headset has a long press action that used to launch voice dialing on my Windows Mobile phone.Â It does nothing on the Android platform.Â Instead I have to reach out, wake my phone up and then launch voice dialing with my hands.Â It doesnâ€™t make the functionality thatâ€™s already there pointless, but it still means I really donâ€™t have a hands free device.Â Why does this basic functionality never get addressed?Â Even with the headset that came with my Nexus One, I canâ€™t launch any form of voice control without touching my phone.Â Come on guys, put some thought into the basic functionality of Android.Â Even notification for missed calls and textâ€™s there are no settings.Â Yes, my trackball can flash but what about sounds?Â If my phone is in my pocket, I canâ€™t see the trackball flashing.Â The functionality is there, in the background, so why not add a simple setting to say as well as flashing my trackball, make a sound.