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Tutorial - Offline Build

Offline build is a pretty complex topic which is why we opted for the online build process in Codename One. It allows for simple install/build and doesn't require a Mac. However, if you work for a bank or a government agency using a cloud solution is sometimes an insurmountable roadblock. That's why we introduced the offline build option to replace our old private cloud option.

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Always on Top and Style Parser

It's been a busy week with 3.7.3 released and a lot of new things. Diamond made several PR's over the past couple of weeks but one interesting PR is an "always on top" feature for the simulator which is exactly what it sounds...

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TIP: Intercept Incoming SMS on Android

Last week I talked about using SMS to activate your application which is a pretty powerful way to verify a user account. I left a couple of things out though. One of those things is the ability to grab the incoming SMS automatically. This is only possible on Android but it's pretty cool for the users as it saves on the pain of typing the activation text.

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Tutorial - Crash Protection

Continuing the trend I revisited the old crash protection video in the "how do I" section and updated it with current information and details. The old video still featured an old flag that should be avoided...
The new video is relatively short and simple as the feature isn't very complex, I hope to produce several more of these and bolster the video section further.

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Pixel Perfect - On Top Menu

I already have half a post on text components but I've put that on hold for now as I've been working on the on-top side menu to supersede the existing side menu bar implementation. I've made some fixes for it over the week, I wanted to make it the default for Codename One apps but it still isn't "perfect". We will make it the default within the next couple of weeks so please test it after this weeks update and let us know ASAP if you spot any issues!

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TIP: Send Device Activation SMS via Twilio

A very common question we get from developers is "how do I get the devices phone number". The answer is "you can't really and you shouldn't". To clarify, this is possible on Android but would require a scary set of permissions. It's blocked on iOS completely though so you'd need a different solution anyway...
If you look at apps like Uber, whatsapp etc. they all use SMS activation. They just ask you to type your number and activate your phone via SMS. Usually this SMS is sent from the server side but for simplicity lets discuss how this can be done entirely from your app.

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Tutorial - Include Source

I redid the include source tutorial which was really old by now and included some outdated "facts" while missing key information. Include source allows us to get the native OS project source code on build, this allows us to debug and profile on the devices.

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TIP: Outsource App Translations

A common trick for gaining traction is localization to multiple languages, Codename One makes that very simple as we explained here. However, unless you are fluent in multiple languages you will need some help to localize broadly.

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New Features and Pull Requests

I haven't blogged as much in the past month and as a result I have a big pile of updates from all over. This is going to be a big list so I'll start with a few pull requests that were submitted by Diamond and Durank. If you see something broken or something that could be better in Codename One just fix it like they did!

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Make it Look Like the Design

I have blogged, in the past, about UI design in Codename One. In one tutorial, I walk through the process of converting a PSD file into a mobile app. Unfortunately, upon re-reading that tutorial, I realize that I completely skipped one of the most important steps. I essentially began with "let's make our app look just like the design", but I didn't describe what it meant to look "just like the design". In this blog post, I'd like to unpack what "just like the design" means to me, in the context of mobile app development.

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