Play in the Browser!

getitongoogleplay

Earlier this year I redeveloped my affiliate costume store from the ground up. Costume-Depot.com got a full overhaul from the back end to the front end. It is pretty slick and you should really go check it out. However affiliate marketing is pretty tough these days. I’m not particularly gifted with advertising and marketing knowledge or even a lick of business sense for myself.  So for me to bring value to my affiliate customers I’ve taken the full transparency approach. I don’t hide what the sites are and I don’t try to trick people.

That being said I had to ask myself the question, “How do I bring eye balls to my costume store?” Enter: TinyWitch

With as much fun as I had with kaBOOM! I knew that game development was something I was going to explore a lot more. Specifically I was going to be targeting HTML5 Games as it is “What I know.” I looked at a few different HTML5 frameworks for making games and even tried to make some stuff without one.  In the end I settled on Phaser 2.0.  Phaser is AWESOME and the HTML5 game development community around it are all a great bunch of folks who help one another.

So with my new tools it was time to try and make something. I figured I would start out with something basic and Halloween-ish. A simple time waster type of game you could play for a little bit and stop. I settled on the classic arcade style shooter. This enabled me to learn the fundamentals of Phaser and also of game development in general. As many games as I have played throughout my life I never until know really had to sit down and be in that creative drivers seat. So it was a new experience for me.

Understanding the core mechanics of “how a game works” came pretty quickly to me. It is mostly pretty intuitive if you have been programming for a long time. The update loop, building functions to destroy, create and move assets around was easy to conceptualize.

I also knew I wanted to have that “App Store experience” so I was determined to port TinyWitch to the Google Play store. I used ludei’s CocoonJS builder to package up my game and build the APK.

So check it out @ http://tinywitch.devdm.com or download it to your Android Device on the Playstore.  Hope you can have a little fun with it.

 

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Jump to a section: Code Editor | Filesystem | FTP | Remote Desktop | SSH | Web Server | Images | Web Browsers
Screenshot_2014-05-30-20-58-54

Android does not have the App support to be 100% effective as a web developer. When I got my Transformer Pad Infinity I had this romantic idea that I was going to go full Android for everything!

“Kiss off Windows. My little Tablet and I are going to show the world it can be done!”

I tried and I got really close but not ALL the way there. The biggest bottle neck for using Android as web development environment is moving around the system quickly, working with funky file type extensions (it doesn’t quite know what to do with a *.sql file for example) and Photoshop.

All that being said- In a pinch and even for an overnight trip I’ll take the TF700t. It is totally capable of FTP, SSH, Skype (of course), Email, Remote Desktop, a local web server even and many of the other required tools for doing a web developers’ job. Let’s go through the apps I use.

Code Editor

droideditpro

DroidEdit Pro

DroidEdit Pro – I tried a few other Code Editors before I settled on DroidEdit. New stuff pops up all the time but I always come back to this one. The interface is very intuitive to what you would be used to on a PC so the transition was easy. Here is the list of features from the Playstore.

DroidEdit is a text and source code editor (similar to Notepad++ or gedit) for android tablets and phones with the following features:

  • Syntax Highlighting for several languages (C, C++, C#, Java, HTML, CSS, Javascript, Python, Ruby, Lua, LaTeX, SQL, …)
  • Several color themes
  • Infinite undo & redo
  • Search & replace
  • Auto & block indentation
  • Keep opened files and changes between sessions
  • Open files directly from dropbox or a file manager
  • Character encoding support
  • Keyboard shortcuts (List below)
  • Share documents with other services (dropbox, email, …)
  • Preview HTML files in browser
  • Bracket matching
  • Go to line
  • Run Scripts in SL4A directly
  • Configurable Shortcuts

Pro version only features:

  • SFTP/FTP support
  • Dropbox support
  • Custom themes
  • Run external commands through SSH
  • Root mode

Filesystem

filemanagerhd

File Manager HD (Explorer)

File Manager HD is what I use on all of my Android devices for moving around the Filesystem for a few simple reasons:

  1. File Manager HD has the best “Network” capabilities for me to move files around between the Tablet and my PC.
  2. The ability to zip/unzip archives. This is a big one for web developers.
  3. Favorite your file paths so they are easily accessible. Navigating around the whole Android directory tree to get to your “Work Files” folder can be a big pain in the butt when you have to do it EVERY single time you need to open something.
  4. Optimized for tablets. A pain point for using Apps to do a PCs job is finding an App with killer features that doesn’t rotate to Landscape because it was designed solely for a phone. Luckily you don’t encounter this as much anymore; a year ago it was still a big issue.
  5. Multiple File selection for copy/paste/delete.

FTP

FtpCafe FTP Client

FtpCafe FTP Client

FtpCafe FTP Client – Again there are a bunch of options on the Playstore for FTP with Android. It really all comes down personal preference about what you are looking for and what jives with your workflow. I like FtpCafe because it gives you the ability to save your connections like most PC clients do. I also just really like the way the interface works. It doesn’t feel nearly as clunky as the other solutions out there when uploading and downloading files. It is a simple app with this simple list of features:

File transfers using:

  • FTP
  • FTPS (Implicit and Explicit FTP over SSL).
  • SFTP (FTP over SSH). Login with password or RSA/DSA OpenSSL (Traditional SSLeay PEM) or ConnectBot (PKCS#8 PEM) private key.
  • multiple file and directory transfers
  • resume transfers support
  • clean and simple UI

Remote Desktop

 

2X Remote Desktop Client

2X Remote Desktop Client

2X Remote Desktop Client – I use a remote Windows terminal on a VPS to do a lot of my work for my stateside employer so having a remote desktop app is mission critical for me. There is a ton of customization options with 2X.  It is full screen and also has a virtual mouse that works with the mouse pad on the TF700t (Bonus Awesome!).

Seamless and secure remote desktop and application access from your Android device! Whenever you want, wherever you are!

Stay connected to your home or office PC with the 2X RDP / Remote Desktop Client for Android. The 2X Client allows you to simply, and securely, connect via Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) to your remote Windows desktop and applications whenever you want, wherever you are.

Additionally, you can connect with 2X SecureRemoteDesktop which provides on-demand, proactive protection against both known and unknown attacks through remote desktop connections, ultimately securing access to your home Windows desktop or laptop.

You can also experience the full benefits of published remote Windows desktops and applications by connecting to 2X ApplicationServer XG. This way, the 2X Client seamlessly runs published Windows desktops and applications from Windows Terminal Server and all the major VDI Hypervisors including Microsoft Hyper-V, VMware or Citrix Xen.
Features
– Support for Android 1.6 onwards
– Unlimited connections
– Unique mouse with right click
– Full keyboard
– SSL security
– Full screen experience
– Minimal bandwidth usage
– Clipboard redirection
– Support for external Mouse & Keyboard
– Supports 2 & 3 finger gestures
– Support NLA

If you have any support related questions, please visit the product forum: http://www.2x.com/forums/

SSH

connectbotConnectBot – It is old and getting dated but I still love it. Just like FTPcafe you can save your connections. It also keeps your sessions alive in the background so you can do other things and come back to it.  SSH is a pretty simple concept and you are free to use whatever you want here. You don’t really even need to use an app for SSH. You can usually just use the default terminal in Android.

Web Server

Bit Web Server (Full)

Bit Web Server (Full)

Bit Web Server (Full) – This effectively turns your Android device into a full LAMP stacked server. I’ve ran Joomla installs and WordPress installs ON my TF700t. How crazy is that?

There is a free version if you want to try it out. I use the full one and it has been a very useful part of my toolkit. It is also just fun to mess around with if you want to fire up a quick hobby project using PHP.

Some specs here:

This application is a web server application for android, include:
– LIGHTTPD as Web Server ,
– PHP as PHP Server ,
– MYSQL as MySQL Server ,
– PhpMyAdmin as MySQL Client , and
– MSMTP as SMTP Client 
It all wrapped into one application called Bit Web Server. So easy to run on android device, just single click then you can run web dynamic scripts.
This application is specially designed for the mobile n tablet, so this application requires very small memory.

For running this application the first time after you download it from google play your internal memory in device requirements should not be less than 50MB. Because this application does not download any data on internet, all data is wrapped into a (apk). And this application can also be accessed from a computer network via wifi or tethering.

This application runs without an internet connection, requires internet only when first run to check the license, if you install the app from google play this otherwise licensed, then to run this application so it does not require internet access (OFFLINE Application).

BitWebServer can run a variety of CMS like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Prestashop, etc. Besides CMS can also run PHP frameworks like Code Igniter, YII, CakePHP, etc.
It is the same as WAMP or LAMP or XAMPP on your computer or laptop, but this is for android devices with lighttpd instead of apache.

Modules/extensions which compiled on PHP is:
– bcmath
– bz2
– calendar
– cgi-fcgi
– Core
– ctype
– curl
– date
– dom
– ereg
– exif
– fileinfo
– filter
– ftp
– gd
– gettext
– gmp
– hash
– http
– iconv
– json
– libxml
– magickwand
– mbstring
– mcrypt
– mhash
– mongo
– mysql
– mysqli
– openssl
– pcre
– PDO
– pdo_mysql
– pdo_sqlite
– Phar
– posix
– Reflection
– session
– shmop
– SimpleXML
– soap
– sockets
– SPL
– sqlite3
– ssh2
– standard
– sysvmsg
– sysvsem
– tokenizer
– wddx
– xdebug
– xml
– xmlreader
– xmlrpc
– xmlwriter
– xsl
– zip
– zlib
– and more libraries like as freetype, jpeg, png, openssl, etc.

Storage Engine support on MySQL is:
– MyISAM
– MRG_MYISAM
– BLACKHOLE
– CSV
– MEMORY
– INNODB
– ARCHIVE

Images

pstouch

Adobe Photoshop Touch

Adobe Photoshop Touch – There is no replacement for Photoshop on mobile. The fine tuning you need to do on image for web designers/developers just isn’t replicated yet in an App. One of the big things is image quality when editing. The rendering and clean up on images saved with any Android app just isn’t as clean as it is on a computer. But if you need to do something quick and dirty this is the best app for it. It has a lot of the core Photoshop features loaded so you can crop, recolor, layer, combine and re-size images.

Web Browsers

I use Chrome for nearly EVERYTHING because it is fast and has the REQUEST Desktop Site feature that remains persistent whenever you visit the site so you never have to check it again. You won’t really be doing any cross browser compatibility testing here but I’ve found it useful to have the most popular options available. Every once in a while you will hit a bug on a site that won’t work in Chrome but will work in another. Usually this is in the form of some Javascript being handled differently by the different apps.

Screenshot_2014-05-30-20-59-37

 

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In our house we have an iPad 3 and the Asus Transformer Pad Infinity. I also have an 8 year old little girl that is constantly wanting to play games with me (both a blessing and a curse I assure you). She is still a kid and I don’t really need her to be submerged in the world of PC gaming so that leaves us with the tablets/phones. These are the games I’ve found that we can play together.

minecraft

Minecraft

Minecraft is our number 1 pick usually. She can run around and play pretend things while I work on the fortress and slay zombies.

tosstheball

Toss The Ball

A nice throw back to Skee Ball. She might not ever experience a good game of Skee Ball and the “Boss-Walk” through the arcade with a fist full of tickets. This is as close as we get for now.

minimotor

Mini-motor

It reminds me of Micro Machines. I’m not sure they even make them anymore but it was as close to a real life SIMs as you could get when I was a kid. It is a fun top down racer. It took her a little while to master the controls and now she beats me all the time.

muffinknight

Muffin Knight

We just got this one. You bounce around as two little guys on the screen and collect muffins to upgrade yourself to the different classes.

Resources

http://android.appstorm.net/roundups/games-roundups/the-best-android-ios-cross-platform-multiplayer-games/

http://mashable.com/2011/11/25/iphone-android-multiplayer-games/

5 Comments

To continue to find fun and exciting uses for my Sixaxis Dualshock 3 I’ve been driven to emulate as much as possible.  We have already shown what can be done with n64oid to turn your Transformer Infinity into a Nintendo 64. Now we will move on to something a little more cool, “Playstation.” To emulate the first generation Playstation and play any PSX roms you need a couple of things.

Things you will need:

  • The app I’ve decided to use was FPse. Available on the Google Play Store.
  • PSX Bios File… Google it or …
  • You are going to want the Open GL plugin so your games don’t look like jaggy-edged-butt. Open GL plugin info/downloads.
  • Some Roms (.bin files is what you are shooting for here.)
  • Some Rom files are going to be .ecm. I believe these are direct from disc Playstation rips. You’ll need ECM Tools to turn these into a bin files. Specifically you will use “unecm.exe.”

There are a TON of settings you can tweak inside the app so you should be able to get it working on your device if you are persistent.  The setup is basic:

Install the App -> Download Bios File -> Download Optional Open GL plugin ->  The app will ask you the location of the Bios File right away -> Download .bin/.ecm (to convert to bin) PSX roms -> Play.

There was only one funky thing with my Dualshock 3 and that was that the square-triangle-circle-cross buttons where all rotated clockwise one button.  So when playing a game: square was the triangle button, Circle was triangle and so on. I was too lazy to try and go through to fix it so I just play with them like that.

Games I’ve played so far: Crash Bandicoot 2, Tomb Raider Chronicles, Harry Potter and Philosophers Stone, and Spyro the Dragon.  Here is a list of working/nonworking Roms so you know what to spend your time trying to get.  Sadly FFVII is still just as bad as it is on any other emulated platform. Doesn’t seem like we’ll ever get it this way.. but… “Sup Bro!”

 

Resources

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Popular with me that is!

While I’m on a role of blog posting here are the games I played on my Asus Transformer Pad Infinity TF700T for the month of March!

minecraftpeMost Played

Most played this month has to be Minecraft P.E. I’ve got an 8 year old in the house and she uses the iPad to play with me over WiFi. She LOVES it and constantly bugs me to play it. There are some screen shots in the gallery of our “Candy Kingdom” and her Adventure Time creations. She has made nearly 99% of all the stuff in the land on her own.

 

ravenswordNewest Game

Ravensword 2 aka Ravensword: Shadowlands. Great game so far. Really makes a good effort to create an Elderscrolls experience on the Tablet/Phone. I also play Aralon: Sword and Shadow but it is becoming dated and it isn’t nearly as polished as Ravensword 2 is. The graphics are better with Ravensword 2 and there are multiple quest lines to do and areas to explore. Aralon is very linear. I don’t have a rating system but if I did this would get all the points but the last one. Nothing ever gets ALL the points.

 

ffdimensionsEnjoying

I’m enjoying a few different titles sporadically.  These are the games you fire up once in a while for about 10 minutes and then stop. Final Fantasy Dimensions is one of those.  Blah blah all the shit you have heard before. In the end it is what it looks like. If you liked Final Fantasy on the NES or SNES you will like this.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Star Wars Pinball – cool to play but I wish you got all three tables when you bought the damn app
  • Machinarium – a real headscratcher and easy to get stuck
  • Dead Trigger – kill zombies.. use your gamepad
  • SG: Dead Zone – kill people.. use your gamepad
  • Snark Busters 2 – I understand the move to in app purchases. But when it is STOPPING my advancement of the game 100%. That sucks. The first one was much better.
  • Xelorians – Space Shooter.. top down.. lots of explosions. Fun stuff.
  • Eufloria HD – Lags a lot on the big maps with many planets. Made it not fun in the end and I stopped playing.

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