Feeds

Google gives Glasshole devs a peek at new native software kit

Run apps directly on the Glass hardware

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Google has unveiled what it's calling a "sneak peek" at its Glass Developer Kit (GDK), a new way to write software for the Chocolate Factory's privacy-stomping future-specs.

Previously, developers who have wanted to write apps for Glass have had to use the Mirror API, a set of interfaces that make it possible to build services that run on the web but are designed for, and interact with, the devices.

With the GDK, coders can now write a new kind of "Glassware" – Google's term for software created for the head-mounted tech – that installs and runs directly on the hardware itself.

This has always been at least feasible. Glass runs a version of the online ad giant's Android operating system and it ships with 12GB of usable storage, so anyone sufficiently skilled at Android app development should in theory be able to write Glass apps, too.

What the GDK provides is a set of APIs that give developers access to the unique capabilities of the Glass hardware, including such features as the voice recognition subsystem, the gesture detector, and the "cards" system that forms the core of the Glass UI.

The GDK isn't meant to replace the Mirror API. Developers can still choose to use it if they wish, and they can even build applications that mix Mirror API code and native Glass apps written with the GDK.

"We designed the Glass platform to make the existing Android SDK just work on Glass. This lets you do code in a familiar environment, but for a uniquely novel device," Google's developer documentation explains. "In addition, you can use all of the existing Android development tools, and your Glassware is even delivered as a standard Android package (APK)."

One thing you will need to develop GDK Glassware, however, is a Glass unit. Unlike when you develop apps for Android smartphones, there is no emulator provided to test your Glass apps on, so you'll need to install them on an actual pair of specs to see them work.

Google also says it plans to make available a more mature "developer preview" version of the GDK sometime in the next few weeks, so it's probably safest to assume that the current versions of the APIs are subject to change.

The "sneak peek" version of the GDK is available beginning on Tuesday as an add-on for the base Android SDK. Interested developers can install it via the Android SDK Manager, per instructions available here. ®

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
Whoah! How many Google Play apps want to read your texts?
Google's app permissions far too lax – security firm survey
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
Do YOU work at Microsoft? Um. Are you SURE about that?
Nokia and marketing types first to get the bullet, says report
Microsoft takes on Chromebook with low-cost Windows laptops
Redmond's chief salesman: We're taking 'hard' decisions
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.