How I learned Android Development
Why I wanted to learn Android Development
I first got introduced to Android programming during the summer of 2012. A particular company (MTN) was having a contest where contestants had to create an application on the Android platform. I was interested in participating, but I didn't know the first thing about Android development as I had been mainly focused on web development and some desktop programming. So I started the task of learning Android programming
How I approached learning Android Development
My first step to learning Android programming (and most other frameworks and languages that I've learnt on my own) was to simply go to Google.com and type in "Learn Android programming". This method has never failed me till date. I followed the first link I saw, which was Google's own Android developer training (https://developer.android.com/training/index.html). After finding my learning resource, it was just a matter of being dedicated and following the resource.
Challenges I faced
The first challenge I faced was the complete change in environment. I had done some applications with JAVA and my knowledge of HTML helped me understand XML better, but I still had problems adapting to use this new form of development. I also had to start using a completely new IDE (Eclipse at the time), which was quite difficult as I had only used text editors and Netbeans sometimes. My experience with JAVA didn't really help that much, as I hadn't really gone deep into the language and had to better understand abstraction in JAVA and all the various Android classes and their inheritance. My HTML knowledge didn't do much help towards learning XML as I had to learn new kinds of attributes using "android:*"
Although, I ended up not participating in the contest that led me to Android programming, this was because I got so immersed in Android development as it was much more interesting than anything I ever did on web or desktop. It was also way more rewarding because there were a lot more challenges that I could face, and a lot more that I could do. It also got better and better with all the new technologies and developments that continued and still continue to develop over
Tips and advice
I always strongly recommend Android development to my colleagues because it is one of the most interesting and satisfying areas of programming. I, however, recommend that beginners should have, at least, some background knowledge of JAVA, as I can't imagine how difficult the learning process would have been for me if I didn't have some JAVA knowledge. I also recommend starting out with Google's Android developer training at (https://developer.android.com/training/index.html). It gives you everything you need to know about the basics of Android programming and more. Also Google.com and StackOverflow.com will be your biggest allies in overcoming challenges
Final thoughts and next steps
All in all, learning Android programming was, and still is a blast. Even till date I'm still learning because there's just so much to do