If It’s Tuesday, It Must Be AndroidTO (and TechDays Eve and CloudCamp too)

tuesday - androidto techdays


Today is the day of Toronto’s conference for Android developers, AndroidTO. I’ll be in attendance, learning about Android development, seeing what Android developers are into and manning Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 booth. That’s right, there’s going to be a Windows Phone 7 booth at an Android conference. Why? Because we’re gold sponsors.

I have to give kudos to Yorkville Media Centre, AndroidTO’s organizers, for seeing things the way I see it — and I see things as a guy who’s worked both the open source and proprietary sides of the computing fence. The mobile market of today reminds me of the personal computer market of the 1980s, the early days of desktop computing, where there were a number of vendors, each with a particular set of advantages, each with a decently-sized slice of the pie. You couldn’t develop for just one platform, but had to target at least a few of them. VisiCalc, the original spreadsheet, ran on the Apple ][, TRS-80, Atari and Commodore machines. Games like Miner 2049er ran on just about every machine under the sun, including the ColecoVision console. Pop open just about any computer of that era that had built-in BASIC, whether Apple, Radio Shack or Commodore, and what did you see on the ROM chips? A Microsoft copyright notice.

It’s the same today with mobile operating systems: if you really want an app to take off, you’ve got to build for many platforms. The folks behind Foursquare, Twitter, Bejeweled and Evernote think so, too. My thinking is: if you’re an Android developer, keep on cranking out those Android apps.,,but give Windows Phone 7 a look, too! You might like what you see, the layout markup and programming languages will be familiar to you, and you’ll be pleased with the speed with which you can pick up and develop apps.

Also: Windows 7 – that’s right, I’m talkin’ ‘bout the desktop OS now – is a great OS on which to develop Android apps. The JDKs run on it, Eclipse runs on it, NetBeans runs on it, a whole host of ancillary dev tools run on it, graphics, video and audio production tools run on it – everything that you need to build mobile apps on Android runs on it. And unlike you-know-who, System.out.writeln(“Java is not deprecated on Windows”);.

TechDays Eve

Today is also the day before TechDays Toronto, the Toronto edition of Microsoft Canada’s cross-country tech conference. In between my booth bunny duties at AndroidTO, I’ll also be attending a tech evangelist team meeting, setting up the rooms for TechDays’ two developer tracks, and attending the TechDays speaker dinner in the evening.


The evening are downtime at TechDays’ venue, but we didn’t want that space to lie fallow. So we invited people to come and hold events in the TechDays venue when they weren’t in use, free of charge. CloudCamp took us up on our offer, and the Toronto edition takes place tonight. For more details about CloudCamp – it’s free to attend, so sign up if you’re available tonight – see this blog entry.

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.