Developing applications for Layar Augmented Reality browser – Android

I finally managed to get my HTC Hero via an upgrade to Meteor.   After using the phone for only a day I am extremely impressed with the applications I have used and the ability of the phone.

The one application that I was really excited to use was Layar.

Layar is a free application on your mobile phone which shows what is around you by displaying real time digital information on top of reality through the camera of your mobile phone.

Developers can create Augmented Reality layers that can be viewed in the browser.   There are a few Irish examples out there like

Dublin Bikes

Dublin Bus Stops

I’m glad to see there are a few Irish developer doing a great job here.   This video will give you an idea of what layar can do.

Here is a presentation from Dirk Groten of Layar on how to develop Layers.  You can read more about the presentation on the layar blog.

I am really looking forward to developing applications for android and some layers for the layar browser.

If you are a java developer, download the eclipse plugin for android development and look at some of the sample applications out there.  You will be amazed how easy it is to move over to android development.  I can really see a lot of developers moving to android in the next few years.   With so many java developers out there at the moment, this could be the driving force that pushes android ahead of iPhone.

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If your in Business, get to BizCamp this Saturday….

This Saturday, 500 people from the Irish Business community are getting together to share their experiences and inspire each other at BizCamp. It is based on the barcamp conference style where people come together in an open forum. There are no sales pitches allowed as the rules for speakers clearly state.

I was at the first Irish Barcamp in Cork in 2006 and really enjoyed the openness of the “unconference”. It was mostly aimed at techies but Bizcamp is for people from any aspect of business. I was away for the first BizCamp Dublin so was pretty happy when I saw that registration was open for Bizcamp2.

As there are so many speakers this weekend, the time table has been already decided. You can have a look at the speaker line up here. I would advise deciding on what you want to see before you go as there are some great talks that clash with each other.

Here’s what I am going to try to get to:

10.00 to 10.45 Joe Drumgoole
Startups in Ireland. Where Do
we go from Here?
10.45 to 11.30 Brian Flanagan
Making financial projections for
a business plan
Steve Gotz
Lessons from an
Unsuccessful American
11.30 to 12.15 Caelen King
Online business models. I will
looks at the value proposition of
various online application and
how these map into business
models and how these revenue
models can be adapted to
maximise revenue.
12.15 to 13.00 Amanda Webb
Facebook for business
14.00 to 14.45 Panel Discussion
3 Entrepreneurs talking
about taking the rough
with the smooth. Kevin
Traynor, Colm Lyon &
Jerry Kennelly
14.45 to 15.30 Claire Boyles
Twitter as a marketing tool
15.30 to 16.15 Gerard O’Brien
Approaching Enterprise Ireland
for the first time – what we
can support, what we look for
in a start-up proposition and
roadmap of supports offered
16.15 to 17.00 Steve Plunkett
SaaS – The Servitization of
the Software Industry. The
software industry is undergoing
a major shift. I will explore the
implications and opportunities
for software businesses in

What talks are you going to?


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Google Car on the N3

On the way into work today I saw the google street car, used to record images for Google Street maps.

Google Car on the N3 in Dublin

Google Car on the N3 in Dublin

UPDATE – 01-10-2010
I knew I saw the Google car that day!

View Larger Map


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Some great startup advice

I just came across this already very successful blog tonight and can’t get over the amount of great advice on it. (Not sure how I have not seen it before.)

I have gone to many seminars and read many books on being successful and one thing they all advice is talk to someone that has already achieved what you desire.
So if your dream is to make the transition from a Software developer to software entrepreneur then start reading this blog by Rob Walling. In another example of the law of attraction, I started to read the E-myth Revisited about a week ago and Robs first tip is from Michael Gerber.

I really like the second realization in his post:

Realization #2: Market Comes First, Marketing Second, Aesthetic Third, and Functionality a Distant Fourth

I met up with a friend that works with the Hothouse program in DIT a few weeks back and he made this exact point to me. As I come from a development background, my first instinct is to get as many cool features into an application as possible. Big mistake!!! If you have no customers, your features are wasted and chances are that your customers will be able to tell you exactly what features they want anyway. Start by identifying your market and marking sure they know, who you are and what you can offer them.

I would highly recommend adding Rob’s blog to your RSS reader. On a Irish note, James Kennedy also has a great blog for peple that would like to generate some automated income from the Internet.

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Problems using Mobile Broadband with O2 Ireland

I recently updated my laptop and decided to go for a laptop with GPRS capability, thinking that I could share the data plan I have on my phone with the laptop.    I was looking for a copy of my SIM card that I could put in my laptop and share the data plan that I already have on my phone.

I was told by O2 that I could not do this as each SIM card needs to have a separate number and I would have to pay for separate data plan for the 2nd SIM card. This means that the 1GB data plan allowance that I pay for on my phone and never come close to using cannot be shared with my laptop. (I know that I can connect to the phones modem over Bluetooth and use the current data plan but that means that there is no point having GPRS on the laptop.)

I might be totally wrong here but does a SIM card not have a unique number that is mapped to the phone number that you dial. Would it not be possible to add two “SIM card ID’s” to one mobile account when one of the SIM cards is used for data only and not voice calls?

I had hope that our telecom companies had convergent networks that could correlate the data between the different services that they offer and take the data used from one data plan account.

If anyone knows of a way to do this or how a SIM card in a phone is mapped to a mobile number that you ring, let me know?  I would be interested to know if this is theoretically possible.

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