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  1. #1
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    Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    Hello Nokia devs,


    Short introduction: I began learning JavaME back in 2006 in my sparetime. Took me 3 years before I felt I had a good grip on it. Then came iPhone, Android and Windows Phone - and they all decided to NOT support JavaME.

    Since keeping up with all the new languages, that is constantly emerging, isn't part of my hobby, I'm mostly sticking with JavaME. And since Nokia seems to be the only company still releasing phones that runs JavaME, here I am.
    I have been looking into Android development as well, but JavaME is more intriguing to me.

    For the past 2 years, my girlfriend and me (LuBlu Entertainment, www.lublu.dk) has been working on our 4th game title in our sparetime. (Yes, it takes that long when you have daytime jobs and kids among other things to take care of too ;-)
    It's a very simple and small arcade game, support for both buttons and touch screen. (And yes, graphics has improved a great deal compared to our first 3 games).

    This game will be our first Android title, but also our 4th JavaME title. We've been developing it for both platforms simultaneously, by using a small framework I've also developed, allowing me to simply copy'n'paste 90% of the code between projects.

    Since we're getting closer to the end of the project, soon we'll have to look into publishing, and I'm hoping to be able to publish for the Nokia JavaME enabled devices.

    Anyway, I have 2 questions for now:

    1) I see that Nokia has expanded their UI API quite a lot. I trust there's still support for standard JavaME classes? I'm not using the FullCanvas class, but rather GameCanvas for example. (Have to ask this before I go out and buy an Asha test device).
    2) I know that Nokia creates a lot of their own JAD attributes. I don't suppose I'd be so lucky that they've invented some clever attributes for serving multiple icon sizes for various platforms, similar to what Android does? If not, what is the one icon size to use nowadays to support most possible devices?

    Any other advice you might have is also most welcome.


    Thanks

  2. #2
    Nokia Developer Champion
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    Re: Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    Quote Originally Posted by misthalu View Post
    Hello Nokia devs,
    I see that Nokia has expanded their UI API quite a lot. I trust there's still support for standard JavaME classes? I'm not using the FullCanvas class, but rather GameCanvas for example. (Have to ask this before I go out and buy an Asha test device).
    Yes standard javame classes are still supported Nokia APIs are just wrappers around them to make developers life easy !!

    Regards,

  3. #3
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    Re: Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    I recommend to play around with the new Asha software platform emulator. Its is a Nokia 501 and quite near to the actual device. From within its Nokia IDE (a Eclipse Pulsar), you are able to install all the earlier emulators (named SDK) side by side. This is a perfect setup for icon testing.

    Quote Originally Posted by misthalu View Post
    [Did Nokia] invented […] attributes for serving multiple icon sizes for various platforms, similar to what Android does?
    If you are a good guy, and you go via the Nokia Store, you give every platform its own icon. With Symbian devices, your are able to specify its own icon. More about this in the (old) archived Java Developer Library. A short summary can be found here.

    If you do not have the funds to create several icons, concentrate on the icon style required for the new Asha software platform. It will look good even on phones from 2006.
    Last edited by traud; 2013-06-11 at 08:28.

  4. #4
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    Re: Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    Thank you for your replies.

    I am using Linux, so I cannot install Nokia SDK.


    I agree that the optimal experience for the user is to add different icons, but I won't be doing that. Simply too much work. I wouldn't mind creating many different icons, if I could include all of them into the same jar package, and have the phone pick the one it wants. But having to create 20 packages just because of different icon size is just ridiculous, and always has been ridiculous. I was kinda hoping Nokia had added a solution to that, seeing as they've added so many other helpful API's.

    At this page:
    http://www.developer.nokia.com/docum...E4A538FB8.html
    - it tells about a scalable icon. So I think I'll look into that.

    I'm also wondering about the JAD attributes Nokia-MIDlet-Original-Display-Size and Nokia-MIDlet-Target-Display-Size. Says there on that same page, that it only applies to Canvas though. So it doesn't apply to GameCanvas?

    The current code in our game does have scaling functionality, if the game is run on a device with a resolution that doesn't match the graphics sizes. But it would probably require a lot less memory if this was handled by those JAD attributes?
    We will be creating multiple packages for different resolutions though, with different sized graphics for each. Even for the Android version. But we'll still include scaling functionality. Tests shows that such functionality is very slow though, especially if a filter must be applied. That's just another reason to look into those JAD scaling attributes - if they work for GameCanvas. Do they?

  5. #5
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    Re: Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    GameCanvas is a sub-class of Canvas, everything which works for Canvas, works for GameCanvas.

    Scalable icons only work in Symbian, and only recent ones. If you do not go for a good icon, your Java MIDlet is going to fail. Period. if you do not invest that time, your MIDlet is not worth looking at. Period. An icon is the first people are going to see, we are starting to judge from the beginning. If you fail here, you have problems to gain bonus later on. Furthermore, if you do not go for these emuators (and Windows), your MIDlet is going to fail. Period. Debugging is much easier with these emulators. You save time! As they are actually full complete devices, they are more than worth a try.

    In Nokia world, two resolutions are dominant: 240 × 320 and 360 × 640. If you are not supporting these two natively, your Java MIDlet is going to fail. Period.

  6. #6
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    Re: Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    Don't be so hasty traud.

    We will be doing a good icon. We just won't make it in 20 different sizes. Obviously, we'll make one for Asha. Otherwise there wouldn't be any point in publishing at Nokia Store. Then maybe 1-2 other sizes for JavaME devices (+ 4 sizes for Android). But that's it. No more. And if that means our MIDlet will fail on other devices, then that's fine.

    One thing I have learned in my 7 years in the JavaME environment: Emulators simply can't be trusted. Never ever publish something you only tested with an emulator.
    There is one thing far better than emulators: The real thing. We buy a lot of real devices and test on those to make sure everything is running.
    So don't say that I absolutely need Windows and Nokia SDK. That's just not true. In fact, for me to install Windows just to run Nokia emulators would be a waste of time and money, since I need/want to test on the real device anyway.

    We will be targeting the two resolutions you mention and more. We just won't be making e.g. 7 jar files for each resolution just because of different icon sizes.

  7. #7
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    Re: Introduction and 2 Asha questions

    Quote Originally Posted by misthalu View Post
    don't say that I absolutely need Windows and Nokia SDK
    Obviously, you never ever played with the Nokia Series 40 and Asha software platform emulators. If you do not want to re-learn, that these are actual devices with production firmware. If you do not want to re-learn, that these offer a lot of debugging messages and internal states of the virtual machine. If you do not want to learn, how the icons are displayed – with those you could check in seconds. If you do not want to learn that you are going to save a lot of time with these emulators. Emulators which are unmatched in industry. If you do not want to re-learn, well then, I am no help.

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