Mobile Android Development: Beginner to Professional
Training course for complete beginners to learn professional Android app development: Book, quizzes, tests, answer key, forum.
As society becomes more and more mobile, a huge demand is opening up for developers with the skills needed to create professional Android apps. Companies are paying big bucks to get their products and services to users on-the-go. But if you've never programmed before or have programmed before but not with Android, wouldn't it be great to have all the information you need to go from a complete beginner to a professional possessing these highly prized skills? And not just a series of tutorials, but a complete course with exercises and tests, through which you will write several of your own professional demo apps to show off to potential employers? That's what I want to create!
There are tons of resources for learning Android, but few of them are really practical, and they often spend so much time going over every optional variation or parameter that readers wind up skimming, often missing what's important. I want to create a course book with a companion website that teaches each required skill from beginner to professional, through practical, interesting exercises.
Some of the topics I'm planning to cover:
- Familiarization with Java programming
- Familiarization with XML
- Setting up a development environment
- Familiarization with the Android SDK
- Troubleshooting and Debugging strategies
- Memory and Battery management strategies
- Backwards compatibility
- Utilizing locational data and Google maps (build a geolocation demo)
- Linking with online web services and databases (build an interactive demo)
- Using the accelerometer (build a multi-user "bump" demo)
- Sharing data (via Facebook, Twitter, email, etc)
- Dynamic 2D graphics (build a demo game)
- Utilizing multi-touch
- Adding audio
- Utilizing a 3rd-party 3D graphics engine (build a 3D demo game)
This is more than just an e-book; it will be a full course with exercises and tests (and an answer key) to make sure you understand each concept in practice, not just in theory. There will be lots of sample code that you can copy and use in your own future projects. The companion website will have a support forum for questions, as well as downloadable source code for all the examples, exercises, tests, and demos.
The course book itself will take around six months to write, and I expect it to be around 500 pages. But this won't just be something I finish writing and then abandon. Feedback from students will be used to improve the course over time (primarily to better emphasize sections that folks report having difficulty with). Everyone enrolled in the course will have free access to all future revisions, and direct support via the companion website.
In the event that the initial goal of $24,000 is greatly exceeded, I will write extensions to the main course, to teach even more mobile-related development skills. I will create these additional courses after I finish the main course, so they will not affect the estimated delivery dates I have listed for the rewards. Additionally, all the rewards earned for the main course will also be extended to these additional courses if the stretch goals are met, so you'll get a lot more for your money!
$48,000 - PhoneGap Sister Course :: This will be a second course on app development, mirroring the main course. However, instead of teaching native Android app development, it will instead focus on the skills needed to develop cross-platform apps through the PhoneGap framework (see phonegap.com). Upon completion of the course, you will be able to build apps for any mobile platform, including Android, Blackberry, iPhone, iPad, and Windows Phone!
$60,000 (or $36,000 - $47,999) - Unity Follow-up Course :: This shorter course will focus on the skills needed to develop a cross-platform 3D demo game through the Unity framework (see unity3d.com). Learn to create awesome 3D games that can be run not only on mobile devices, but also web, PC, Mac, and even consoles!
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge of this project will be presenting the material in as understandable a way as possible, so that someone with only an interest and no prior programming experience can successfully complete the course and learn the material. At the same time, it must be interesting, or more experienced folks will lose interest and skim over potentially important material. I plan to overcome this challenge by avoiding theory, and getting right into real-world, practical usage. Each topic will be working directly toward creating an interesting, functional demo.
Of course, there's always the potential for snags with any creative project. Things can go wrong, take longer to complete than expected, etc. On such potential snag could be a couple of upcoming life events. I recently transitioned out of the Air Force, and we have moved to a new city and state. We are in the process of purchasing a house, and a lot of my free time in upcoming weeks will be understandably focused on that.
I intend to overcome this challenge by establishing a clear time-line of goals, which will be a metric of how things are progressing. This will motivate me to stay on track with the project. In the event that I am behind schedule for whatever reason, I will let everyone know well ahead of time. I intend to be as transparent as possible with this project, so you the contributers can see that I am not squandering your investment.
One final challenge is the "estimated delivery dates" for the rewards that involve one-on-one sessions with me. If a lot of people choose these rewards, then the actual dates when these sessions take place may be delayed for some contributers. I will coordinate with everyone to work out a schedule that is fair and ensures that everyone in those tiers is accommodated.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)