Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Opp: Android Camp: students spend a week developing Android applications

Goog's android camp sounds a lot like our class!

Android Camp: students spend a week developing Android applications

The pool of young, talented college students who have an interest in computer science and engineering is growing each year. In response, our University Programs team created Android Camp, a week-long program for undergraduates to work at Google over the summer in an internship-like environment, focusing on Android Development.

In early June, 26 freshmen and sophomores from universities across the U.S. and Canada spent a week at Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. attending the first annual Android Camp. Most of these students are currently pursuing degrees in computer science or computer engineering. Instead of Capture the Flag and arts & crafts, Android Camp was a fast-paced “Android development 101,” providing students with practical, technical and professional skills to aid in their future success as students and engineers. Participants were also given an inside perspective into the technical world of Google, interacting frequently with full-time software engineers.

Android “campers” worked in groups to brainstorm and conduct market research in order to choose an idea for an application. Campers collaborated to create the application itself along with a design proposal and final presentation. Throughout the week, teams reviewed each other’s code and had the opportunity to work with the Android team at Google to get feedback and support. There were also structured lectures with demos and code labs for supplemental learning.

At the end of the week, each group presented its application to other Android campers and Google engineers. Applications spanned a variety of categories: recipeBEAR provides people with a list of meal recipes based on ingredients they have on hand; Blazin’ Contacts uses QR codes to automatically collect contact information from a large group of people and input it into your mobile device; OnTime combines Google Maps with the device’s alarm to help people gauge how much time they’ll need to arrive somewhere; The Shake Race, as you may imagine, was the most entertaining of the bunch—group members demonstrated the game by shaking their Xoom Tablets furiously to race their characters across the screen.

There was plenty of fun in store as well, including a hands-on lesson in sushi making, a trip to the California Academy of Sciences and an outing to a San Francisco Giant’s game. Eavesdropping among the students as Android Camp came to a close, we heard a lot of positive feedback. “Not only did I (as well as everybody else) learn a great deal, but I also had a lot of fun and met plenty of interesting individuals,” explained Boris, a compu...

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