Beneath a Scarlet Sky: A Novel

But after everything, and even when the skies turn scarlet and threatening, I still believe that if we are lucky enough to be alive, we must give thanks for the miracle of every moment of every day, no matter how flawed.

It amazes me to realize that this story, as many others that remain untold, actually happened, that they’re part of our own history and are not just good fiction stories to entertain ourselves.

I believe in stories of real heroes like Pino’s one, they remind me that we live our own hero stories every day, situations where our courage is tested and we are given the choice to do right. Let’s all be heroes.

Health Anxiety & Dr Google

You’ve just noticed a weird symptom, it may be a dull pain, a discomfort, a sensation, you name it, and suddenly you start typing on Google looking for an explanation, a benign and harmless cause. Guess what? You will not find that.

You should never consult Dr. Google

You’ll start following links and eventually, you’ll end up certain that you have a very rare sinister illness that will bring you to your inevitable end within a few days or weeks. How did you not notice before?

monsters inc fainting GIF by Disney Pixar

Ok, maybe it’s not that way for everyone but if you are prone to anxiety you’d better resist the temptation, you may end way down the rabbit hole, reading and searching for hours in uncountable websites about your symptoms. The worst thing about it is that your mind is so powerful that it’ll start creating new symptoms for you to worry even more in a horrible vicious circle. I’ve been there.

The web is not your doctor.

How to deal with it:

  • Identify the temptation and the triggers
  • Put your device down
  • Use a relaxation or anxiety reduction technique
  • Live the moment (focus on your work, activities, people around you)
  • Keep moving and physically active, don’t let health anxiety paralyze you
  • Ask for professional help

Consult your real doctor if you are worried about any symptoms or if your symptoms persist.

 

The Better Angels of our Nature

As one becomes aware of the decline of violence, the world begins to look different. The past seems less innocent; the present less sinister.

All the research and data concentrated in this book makes me optimistic about our evolution as humans and the direction we’re heading. Let’s keep it this way.

Faith in humanity restored.

 

Android Splash Screen with Kotlin

There are different opinions on whether having a splash screen on your Android application or not.

Personally, I think splash screens are a good place where you can showcase your app’s nice design and give your users a good first impression.

So, this is how I’ve been implementing splash screens on my recent Android apps with Kotlin.

Static vs Animated

I’ve used both static and animated splash screens and here are some thoughts.

Static

  • Showed only in the launching of your app before onCreate() is called.
  • You’re not wasting your users time.
  • Not intended to run operations while the splash screen is shown.

Animated

  • You can show a cool animation and custom design.
  • Flexibility to perform some operations while the animation finishes.
  • Users can get bored if the animation is useless or if it takes too long.

Static Android Splash Screen

one-breath-splash

1.

Create the drawable file that we will use as background in the entry activity, by using a background, the app will show it without having to inflate a layout file.

2.

Create a theme in the styles file with no action bar that uses the splash drawable as the background to set it in the entry activity.

3.

Set the new style as a theme for the splash activity in your app manifest.

4.

Add the code to navigate to the next activity as soon as the app has finished loading.

Animated Android Splash Screen

power-nap-splash

When I use animated splash screens I like to keep showing the static part of the splash screen on the initialization so I repeat steps 1, 2 and 3 from above and just add the animation functionality.

4.

For the animated splash screen, we will inflate a layout with the element or elements we want to animate. In this case, I’m just animating a textview.

5.

Now we need to modify the splash activity to enable the animation and perform some loading operations in the meantime. Here’s how my splash activity looks like.

That’s it, please share your thoughts on Android splash screens and your comments on how to improve this implementation.

Posted in Dev

Ready Player One

People come to the Oasis for all the things they can do, but they stay for all the things they can be.

The question is not if, but when is this going to be a reality. Personally, I think we’re very close in terms of technology, It’s just a matter of time until someone comes up with the right formula.

The idea of a virtual reality of this scale is amazing, scary, but amazing.

car race GIF by Ready Player One