This article is a step by step guide to start with application development in Android.
Application development in Android platform is done using Java programming language. And the application are run by Dalvik Virtual Machine on Android devices. The DVM is optimized for mobile devices.
Developing applications in Android:
Application development in Android can be done by using an IDE (Eclipse, IntelliJ IDEA) or from the command line tool. I recommend using the Android plugin(called ADT) for Eclipse IDE as its easier and a faster mode of development. For developing in Eclipse you need to have JDK, Eclipse IDE and Andoid SDK installed. You can follow the steps below to set up your development environment ( I have tried listing the source wherever possible).
Setting up development environment:
- Install JDK 5 or higher. (http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/downloads/index.html)
Install Eclipse 3.6 (Helios) or higher (make sure the version has JDT plugin, generally most versions do have it by default). (http://www.eclipse.org/downloads/)
Install Android SDK. (http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing.html#Installing )
Install ADT (Android Development Tools) plugin for your Eclipse, and configure it. (http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing.html#InstallingADT )
Use AVD(Android Virtual Device) Manager to create an emulator. (http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing.html#AddingComponents )
Now you are all set with your development environment.
Beginning with Android development:
The SDK provides a variety of sample projects. Although the sample projects are simple,screencasts and video tutorials make for an interactive guide to learn application development. This one by Marko Gargenta of marakana.com is a popular screencast. ( http://marakana.com/techtv/android_bootcamp_screencast_series.html ).
After getting the hands-on Android app development experience from the interactive demos, you will be able to understand the sample projects from the SDK better and also be able to develop small projects on your own. The official Android developer guide (http://d.android.com/guide/developing/index.html ) is the best source of reference for developers, which contains development guide, android package documentation, videos and sample codes.