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Overview, Installation, and Configuration of Android Application Development Tool Chains on Intel® Architecture

Android provides a complete set of tool chains (or toolsets) for application development. Originally, Android ran only on ARM architecture hardware platforms. But now, to support Android tool chains on the Intel Atom hardware platform, Intel has added important plug-ins, libraries, and other auxiliary components. In addition, to give

better play to the performance advantages of Intel hardware, Intel has added special development tools such as compilers and optimizers.

This chapter introduces the general processes and methods for Android application development on the Intel Atom platform. In the subsequent sections, we're going to discuss the methods for using special Intel tools to achieve optimized performance and low energy consumption.

The Android and GNU development tool chains and the functions corresponding to Android cross development stages are shown in Table 3-5.

Table 3-5. Comparison between GNU and Android Tool Chains

In addition to the differences with GNU tools shown above, Intel also provides some special performance libraries, including Intel® Integrated Performance Primitives (Intel® IPP), Intel® Math Kernel (Intel® MKL), and Intel® Threading Building Blocks (Intel® TBB). Some of the libraries have already provided special services such as the C++ template based threading services API in Intel TBB. Some of them use the Intel architecture instruction potential to achieve optimized performance, such as, for example, the Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) in Intel IPP. Some of the libraries still do not have direct Java interfaces. We're going to discuss them in subsequent sections.

Table 3-5 shows that the Android development tool chain for Intel architecture basically includes two parts: one part is the Android development tools. The Intel tools here include an Intel architecture emulator, development library, and other plug-ins. The other part is the independent Intel tools. While the Android development tools support most of the steps of application development such as editing, building, packaging, deployment, and debugging, the Intel tools involve mainly optimization.

Android development tools mean the software environment consisting of JDK (Java SE Development Kit), Android SDK (Software Development Kit), and an IDE (Integrated Development Environment)—Eclipse. Android development tools can run on Linux,

OS X, and Windows systems. In this book, we're going to discuss the Windows scenario.

The Android development tools can be run in command-line format or an IDE.

The general development process of the Android command line tool in the Android SDK is shown in Figure 3-9. Eclipse, a graphic user interface tool, is typically the tool used

for IDE mode, integrating the functions of editing, compiling, linking, deployment, and debugging. We're going to discuss the method based on the IDE.

Figure 3-9. Development process of the Android SDK command line

The directory structure of the Android SDK is shown below. It can be obtained by running the tree command from the command line.

├─add-ons

│ └─addon-google_apis-google-16

├─docs

│ ├─about

│ ├─assets

│ ├─design

│ ├─develop

│ ├─distribute

│ ├─guide

│ ├─images

│ ├─intl

│ ├─live

│ ├─out

│ ├─reference

│ ├─resources

│ ├─samples

│ ├─sdk

│ ├─shareables

│ ├─tools

│ └─training

├─extras

│ ├─android

│ └─google

├─platform-tools

│ ├─api

│ ├─lib

│ └─renderscript

├─platforms

│ └─android-16

├─samples

│ └─android-16

├─sources

│ └─android-16

├─system-images

│ └─android-16

├─temp

└─tools

├─ant

├─apps

├─Jet

├─lib

├─proguard

├─support

├─systrace

└─templates

The main files you should notice are:

• add-ons: API packages provided by Google, like Google Maps APIs

• docs: help and explanation documents

• platforms: API packages nd some example files for each SDK version

• tools: some general tool files

• usb_driver: AMD64 and Intel architecture driver files

The main files and their functions are described below.

 
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