How to Upload a Sign In With Facebook App to the Amazon Market

The Amazon market signs apps in a way that will break your app if it uses Sign In with Facebook or any other solution that depends on the signature of the app matching what’s input into a developer site ( Google maps is another example).

Contact Amazon 

Contact through the developer portal and tell them that you have this problem.


They will set up your account so you can sign the app yourself.

Here’s the steps they sent me ( Directions for steps 7 & 9 will follow).
1. Log in to the Developer Portal 
2. Find the app you want to sign on the My Apps page 
3. Mouse over the Actions button for that app and select App Details 
4. From the application details page under the Upload Binary section, click Edit 
5. If you already have a binary uploaded, click the Remove button 
6. Make your DRM selection and select No, I will sign my binary under Signature 
7. Upload your unsigned binary (shown as Step 1. Upload unsigned binary)
8. Download the processed binary (shown as Step 2. Download processed binary)
9. Sign the downloaded binary
10. Upload your newly signed binary (shown as Step 3. Upload signed binary)
11. Click the Done button 

Upload your unsigned binary 

If you’re like me, you’ve never exported an unsigned binary.

Here’s the docs from google…http://developer.android.com/guide/publishing/app-signing.html#releasecompile

For eclipse peoples, here’s what it says:
To export an unsigned APK from Eclipse, right-click the project in the Package Explorer and select Android Tools > Export Unsigned Application Package. Then specify the file location for the unsigned APK. (Alternatively, open your AndroidManifest.xml file in Eclipse, select the Manifest tab, and click Export an unsigned APK.)

Note: When I did this on my macbook, I had to edit the source code of the amazon website on this step to the right file path because the filepicker tried to do something strange and used C:/fakepath/….

Sign the downloaded binary 

Then after downloading the processed amazon file, you’ve got to sign it command line using jarsigner and zipit.

http://developer.android.com/guide/publishing/app-signing.html#signapp jarsigner -verbose -sigalg MD5withRSA -digestalg SHA1 -keystore /Users/youruser/name.keystore unsigned-amz.apk keyalias

Now the unsigned-amz.apk is signed. With some extra parameters you could create a new one instead.

The final step is a zipalign command for performance.
zipalign -v 4 /path-to/unsigned-amz.apk /path-to/signed-aligned-amz.apk

That’s it.  Upload it back to amazon.

HTC Hero Mount USB to Mac Os X (macbook pro)

I wanted to get the media off of my htc hero and onto my macbookpro, but plugging the USB cable in does not result in a notification on android which allows me to mount sd card through the USB cable.

I found lots of promising articles, most of which pointed me to either Twisted, which didn’t work for me, or to the Android developer SDK. I’m fully capable of using the SDK but this seems like overkill for such a simple issue.

My Solution: Close the lid on the macbook. Plug in the phone and then I get the notification allowing me to mount a USB. Once mounted, its the same as working with any other USB card.

Anecdotes on India’s Healthcare

Both of my children got sick while we were in India this trip so I got a chance to see the healthcare system in India at work. I made the trip to the doctor twice with my daughter.

Encounter 1.
My daughter got a fever on the night train and had stopped eating. The previous day she had a couple instances of diarrhea. I told the doc that i had been alternating doses of motrin and tylenol every 4 hours and that it was keeping the fever under control.

After a brief exam with a stethoscope, I was told to only give the tylenol and to start her on an anti-biotic for her stomach. Total: 80 Rs. Medicine included.

We were extremely concerned that an anti-biotic without any tests might not be the best option, but we took the advice on tylenol only.

Encounter 2.
Next day, daughter is still not eating and still showing some symptoms of fever. This time I had done a throat exam myself and knew there were swollen tonsils with some white cold sores in the back of her mouth. The doc was able to identify the throat problem easily but I wonder if it would have been identified if not for my own inspections.

Medicines were prescribed to help start eating again and help fight the infection. Total: 150 Rs. Medicine not included.

Takeaways.

  • Cost of care is very cheap.
  • Quality of care is suspect(anti-biotic prescription w/out any exams).
  • Waiting times were normal.
  • Payment was at time of care in cash.
  • Equipment was lacking

For me, the care i receive in the USA is hands down superior to what we received while in India. However, the cost to receive care in the Indian system is dramatically lower to the USA system.

Back From India

I’ve spent the past 2+ weeks in India for a family wedding. My wife’s birthplace is in Kerala, India and her sister chose to be married there so we packed the whole family up and travelled halfway across the globe.

While most of our trip was dedicated to visiting the family, we did find a little time to escape to munnar, walk the beach in nager coil, and a do a little shopping at Seemarti.

So here’s some of the things i’ve learned after 2 trips to india:

  1. Get a Driver
    For 1350 Rs./Night, we got a driver and an SUV with 80km included. 10Rs. per additional kilometer and our total expense under $40/day. This is an absolute steal and the additional comfort of a dedicated driver is worth every penny. I’d plan for one of these to pick
  2. Use the AC Night Train
    The roads are terrible. It takes 2-4 times as long to go anywhere by road in India as it does in the USA. If you are planning to go from state to state or any trip over 200km, i advise the night train or a plane. To get tickets on the AC night train, you have to book at least a week in advance, so set your itinerary and book your ride.
  3. Take Packaged Drinks
    If you don’t want to get sick, don’t drink their drinks. The packaged waters there(Aquafina, Himalaya, and Kingfisher) all checked out with me. The other waters, tap water, milk, juices, sodas, and anything with ice have all given my stomach trouble at one time or another.
    Horizon Organic Milk, Apple Juice, Orange Juice, and Gatorade will all be in my bags next trip. Each piece of checked-in luggage gets 50 lbs, weigh your bags and fill in the additional weight with fluids.

Some other things i’ve learned about travelling to kerala with an infant and a toddler:

  1. Pack N Plays fit inside a suitcase. We took one for each kid and without them we’d had to have had both kids in our beds or on the floors. Given the general cleanliness being much lower than i’m accustomed to, the floor is not an option.
  2. February is too Hot. Go in november, december, or january.
  3. Combat the barrage of spicy foods with a steady dose of snacks from home. My favorites are trail mix, beef and cheese, granola bars, and cheese crackers.
  4. Try the Fried Fish, http://bit.ly/clBGyU, it can be spicy but it’s worth it.

I may write some more on some of my favorite spots, where i might go next, and any of my other thousands of opinions after travelling in india again.

HTC Hero Review

I’ve had the HTC Hero from Sprint for about a month now and i’ve had enough time to digest all the features.

Advantages:
1. Extremely well integrated with twitter, facebook, and flickr.
2. Very flexible customization with seven pages of personalized layout
3. No keyboard means lightweight and small (I’ve no problems using the touchscreen keyboard)
4. Phone, especially Speaker Phone, work better than my old LG phone.

Cons:
1. Shaky software. i.e. Alarm Clock crashes instead of alarming and calendar app crashes.
2. Advanced Task Killer App is needed to control usage and save battery life ( couldn’t android have a built in way to kill apps?)

All in all, I love this phone. My wife has the samsung moment and my preference is definitely for the hero over the moment.

I believe in Santa Claus

My wife and i had this debate a little before christmas so i’ll share my point of view.

The retail industry has made a mockery out of christmas and trumped up santa to the point where many people are stressed out, frustrated, and sick of christmas. Many Christian groups are calling for devout followers to give up the tradition entirely; i disagree.

Santa claus is a great metaphor for what Christmas is all about. Santa claus is God and the metaphor flows easily from there. All those tales about the naughty list and gifts of coal never pan out in the end. Santa brings gifts and glad tidings to all. Likewise, we christians believe that God gave his son to all, sinner and saint, that we may achieve salvation through him.

With this understanding, santa claus is a great tradition. It is unfortunate how often this goes overlooked and unless we teach our children this metaphor, santa will continue to be seen as just another part of the modern decadence.

Remember, all things in moderation.

Glimpses of the future of personal healthcare

I just wanted to mention a couple of websites that are doing positive things in the area of consumer health.

QuickenHealth, http://healthcare.intuit.com, is making it easy for consumers with a certain group of insuresrs, to track and manage their expenses. It helps clarify what, why, and when the insurer made or didn’t make payments on your behalf.

Patients Like Me, http://patientslikeme.com, makes it easy for people with some of the more acute conditions to collaborate with other patients like themselves online. For me, the ALS group would have been nice back when my family was going through a grandparent having the disaease.

Keas, http://keas.com, named after a strange bird, lets you integrate data from one of the major PHR’s and then manage your own health by selecting from a variety of care plans.

While none of these sites is completely solving the problem of health care, they are all forward thinking and are specific examples that could be cited for how health care is going to shift more and more to the responsibility of the patient. We will show up for our appointments more educated than ever before.

Health Care Reform: Are there any lessons from the past?

Can we learn anything from the past about technology and the disruption it can cause to an industry?

Think about a few examples…

  • The record and video stores are being replaced by online and/or mechanical counterparts. See netflix, itunes, redbox, etc…)
  • Power generation went from individually owned windmill’s and watermills to centralized power plants
  • Email has supplanted traditional mail in popularity and usage

Given that the health care delivery system is just now approaching the “tipping point” for being completly digitized, is government legislature really necessary when the past shows that innovation will inevitably come and reduce the cost, remove the friction, and improve our delivery system?

It’s the spirit of the free market system that has lead to countless examples of this in our short history as a nation and i hope that we don’t rush to judgement instead of letting the entrepreneurs duke it out. Let the most valuable solution win!

Death to PPOs HMOs and all the other insurance plans that don’t involve the consumer!