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RemoteDroid controls robot remotely

Android + Arduino wireless from Guus Baggermans on Vimeo.

Well damn!

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RemoteDroid gets multitouch gestures

Thanks to Nicolas Frenay, RemoteDroid now has some cool multitouch gestures. You can now use two fingers to scroll, just like a macbook, as well as clicking the onscreen mouse buttons, and dragging using the touchpad, just like you always wanted. He’s using reflection to find out if your phone supports multitouch, which means that 1.6 devices aren’t left totally out in the cold, and I don’t have to worry about maintaining two different branches.

One note for Nexus One users, the Nexus One apparently has some pretty serious multitouch problems, making click and drag a bit wonky. I’d advise sticking to tap-to-click and hold for dragging items around.

Another change is that I’ve removed the trackball as mouse functionality. Now clicking the trackball acts as a CTRL key, and moving the trackball acts as a scrollwhell, making it more like ConnectBot, and making the user experience a little bit more consistent.

Lastly, I’ve added better support for the soft keyboard. All keys, except for the ones that don’t have direct analogues on your regular keyboard now work. (long-press keys still aren’t supported) In the future, because of differing physical keyboard layouts between devices, I’m going to try to get RemoteDroid to recognize which device you’re using, and change what it sends depending on that, but for now, at least the soft keyboard should be pretty consistent.

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Adobe AIR 2.0 adds support for UDP

One of the things I’ve always wanted to see in Flash has been support for UDP sockets. As anyone whose tried to write a real-time networked game knows, TCP/IP is just too slow for the sorts of fast-twitch reactions used for first-person shooters, or anything real-time at all.

Apparently, Adobe AIR 2.0 has now added support for UDP, and this post by Jeff Winder shows how he’s added accelerometer support to RemoteDroid, and is using it to control an Adobe AIR application. Check out the video below:

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RemoteDroid has been open sourced

I’ve finally gotten around to open-sourcing RemoteDroid, and putting it up on Google code. You can get to it at:

You’ll also always be able to find the latest .apk and server files there.

Part of my reason for open-sourcing it is that I’m just one person, with just one phone. Like or not, Android has already fragmented, and will probably fragment even more in the future, so support for every Android device out there will become increasingly difficult. That’s where open-source comes in.

I’m looking for contributors to help debug on platforms other than the G1. There are several issues that I simply can’t fix because I have no way of replicating them. Additionally, other people might think of features that I haven’t or haven’t had time to implement. If nothing else, people might be curious about how RemoteDroid works, and open-source is a great way of dealing with these issues.

If you’d like to help, feel free to email me at, or use the feedback form.

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Windows 7 support?

Recently spotted on Twitter: a RemoteDroid user’s report that I believe was about the server app working fine on Windows 7, which is still in beta. The tweet was in German, so I’m guessing to some degree on the meaning. But if anyone out there has RemoteDroid up and running on Windows 7 — and can post a comment or drop me a line in English to confirm — that would be great, thanks.

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Version 1.2 available now

Hi, Josh’s web site co-collaborator here to let you know about the latest version of RemoteDroid, released today. A number of new features were added, many in response to user feedback:

  • Tap to click
    The onscreen touchpad is now clickable: tap once for a single click, twice for a double click, and tap and hold to select text or click-and-drag.
  • Trackball scroll wheel
    Clicking on the scroll wheel toggles it from a mouse controller to a scroll wheel. Click again to toggle it back.
  • Customizable mouse sensitivity
    New user preferences menu lets you set the sensitivity of your mouse and tap speed.
  • Saved IP address
    You no longer have to enter your IP address every time you launch the application. RemoteDroid saves the IP address of your last network used — just tap on “Connect” to begin.

The Preferences menu, mentioned above, also lets you choose which new features you want to globally turn on or off, such as tap to click or using your trackball as a scroll wheel.

The new version of RemoteDroid has been tested with computers running Mac OS (Tiger, Leopard), Windows (XP, Vista) and Linux. However, there will inevitably be certain operating system and computer configuration combos that will, for one reason or another, work less than perfectly. If you’ve read the Support page and have ruled out all of the possible reasons for the app not working listed there, you can report an issue using the contact form.

As always, the phone app is available in the Android Marketplace. And make sure you also have the latest version (1.2) of the server app, available here.

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