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Home arrow Experts arrow Glenn Letham arrow Hackday - Tips, Tricks, OpenData sources, and Developer Resources for Mobile Application Developers     

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Hackday - Tips, Tricks, OpenData sources, and Developer Resources for Mobile Application Developers PDF Print E-mail
Experts - Glenn Letham
Written by @gletham   
27 February 2012

Hackday events are becoming quite common, many local government agencies embracing the format and opening the doors, and their data vaults, to local developers, hackers, and those simply looking to mashup some data. Read on for Tips, Open Data sources, Developer Tools, Mobile Dev resources and more!

Depending where you happen to be located, the data available to you can be massive and plentiful or basically non-existent. If the latter is common in your region then perhaps word of a hackday could spur local officials to be a little more open and willing to provide access to some of their precious data holdings.

So, what to do on a hackday and what resources could be valuable? If your next hackday is going to be your first then you will likely spend loads of time searching around for tools and such. Here's a sampling of useful tips and resources that could save you some time as well as a few hints to help get your event off the ground. Good Luck!

Planning a Hack Day Event? If so you'll need to do the following:

  • Put the word out on social media and get the help of local mavens and vocal opendata enthusiasts to help spread the word
  • Try to secure a food sponsor or 2 along with a local company that can offer up some meeting space along with wifi
  • Prmote the event widely on social media
  • Find local hackers and invite them to come
  • Tell some local open source businesses and enthusiasts about it and welcome them along
  • Set the time and date, conder using a registration page
  • Document the ideas and hacks using a shared document
  • Meetup, serve coffee and food... HACK!
  • Repeat as often as possible!
Google Tools

Other Useful Map, WMS, and mapping Tools and developer resources

Useful Hack Related Articles

Need Data? Here's Some BC, Canada Data and OpenData tools and Resources


Planning a mobile app rollout? If so check out the following article: Mobile Developer Gold PhoneGap - OpenSource Development Framework; Deploy to 7 Major Mobile Platform. The idea is that the service leverages existing JavaScript and HTML skills for rapid app development and deployment. The idea is as follows:

  • build your app once
  • wrap it up with PhoneGap (using a free openSource framework)
  • Deploy to multiple environments

Suggested Developer Resources for Mobile Application Development

ArcGIS resource center and tools for mobile development - Esri has provided a number of SDKs and tools for developers looking at most of the mobile platforms. Create apps for smartphone and Tablets using Esri tools. More specific topic areas are also provided by Esri, for example, this resource for developing for Android http://resources.arcgis.com/content/arcgis-android/about

- Looking for data to use in your mobile apps and mashups?

Developing for Android - A basic starting point for new developers to the Android ecosystem

Android Training - An online orientation to Android training. A number of how to tutorials, code samples, articles, tutorials and more.

Developing location services with Android - add location provisioning to your android apps using classes of the Android location package and Google maps.

Foursquare API and developer resources
- If you're mobile app integrates location you may want to add support for foursquare checkin. Here's a dev resource from foursquare

Nokia maps Ovi maps API - you may not think Nokia has huge marketshare in North America, however, on the rest of the planet Nokia is huge! Adding to that, Nokia Maps is a terrific map service and has some awesome opportunities for application developers... don't discount this at all!  And see also location APIs and tools from Nokia

Nokia Developer - The massive developer community resource from Nokia, was Forum Nokia with articles, community discussion, docs, tools, downloads and more for those interested in Symbian, S40, Qt and more.

NN4D - The fabulous developer resource provided by Nokia owned NAVTEQ, the global data provider . See http://www.nn4d.com and the NN4D blog http://nn4d.blogspot.com/

The Google Maps API family and developer resources - Find the Google maps Javascript, Flash APIs and Google earth tools

The Google Geo Developers Blog - a developer resource and official blog for Google map developers and those using google maps APIs and tools

The Yahoo! maps web services Geocoding API
- some resources from Yahoo! for working with location in Yahoo! mapping apps

Facebook developer APIs and tools - a comprehensive resource for developers from facebook - be sure to keep tabs on facebook Places and movement they make in location aware services, POI and related matters.

Twitter developer API https://dev.twitter.com/ and Twitter Geo developer guildelines - A useful resource for those lookig to include Twitter functionality into their mobile apps.

Application Platform Overview for Windows Phone and the Windows Phone developer blog
http://windowsteamblog.com/windows_phone/b/wpdev/ with tips and tricks for the developer and those interested in the Windows Phone OS

AppHub - a vast developer resource for those interested in creating apps for Windows Phone - a hint... nokia is really watching this space and there's huge opportunity for those creating apps for the new Nokia Windows Phone devices!

Bing Maps developer resources - Bing Maps gives you a rich set of tools to help you create amazing map experiences. Choose from our super fast AJAX Control 7.0,  REST Services API,  Bing Map App SDK for mash-ups

Mapquest developer network and tools - details of their flash maps API, geocoding tools, working with OSM and more - a complete resource for developing for Mapquest. See also OSM tools and guidelines from mapquest - http://developer.mapquest.com/web/products/open/tools

Mapnik is a Free Toolkit for developing mapping applications - perhaps not for mobile development, however, Mapnik is a fantastic, open resource for anyone looking to start mashing around with maps and map data!

Metaio mobile SDK AR toolset - The metaio Mobile SDK is the only package in the industry allowing developers to use content without prior encryption

HipGeo Developer API - HipGeo's apps use passive and active location collection schemes to record detailed information about a user's location.

Instagram API - With the Instagram API, the goal is to make it easier for developers to create interesting and innovative ways to browse the ever-growing volume of photos posted to Instagram

The HTML5 geolocation API - This article aims to show you what are the things you can do with this new API controlled by web browser client based on wireless geolocation and compare it with the server-side IP geolocation


Image credit www.visionmobile.com

For more information and tips on mobile LBS app development see:

Last Updated ( 27 February 2012 )
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