Dec 17, 2010

The most encouraging update for Android Market ever

These days Android Market has a major update, both in use client and developer console.
I have to say the updates are marvelous and hitting the points.
The promotion space is much better now. I can now put 8 screenshots, linking a video, and have now 4000 characters to describle my app. Well I know no user will read more than 1000 characters, but it's very good for searching and noticing.
Also, the "Recent Changes" is important. When I update an app I always want to know what's new. Forcing users to read Change Note web page is non-sense.
I also like the new Market user client, but you all can see how it's changing, so I won't talk here.
Good job, Google. (and the team from WebOS I guess)

Dec 6, 2010

Meridian new widget questionnaires

We're taking care of new widgets of Meridian. 
Please let us know your thought at: 

Nov 24, 2010

About lock screen widget of Meridian

After trying Lock Screen widgets of like Mixzing and PowerAMP, and lock screen apps like WidgetLocker or so, I choose to make a special lock screen widget of Meridian.
I strongly recommend users to install a lock screen app (WidgetLocker Lockscreen is very nice), then put Meridian's normal widget on it. This way works more flawlessly and beautiful.

Nov 1, 2010

Difference between Meridian Pro from Market and PayPal

First of all, buying Meridian Pro from Market or PayPal does not differ in the application features. They are totally identical except the authorizing method. Also, you don't need both of them. One of them is fine.

The differences are:
  • With a Market auth app you need to keep it installed in the phone, and with a PayPal auth key you need to input it into Meridian main app.
  • Market auth app is Google account dependent, where PayPal auth key is device dependent.
  • Thus, if you changed your phone with a PayPal auth key, you need to mail me for a new key.
  • In the other hand, if you changed your Google account for some reason, you need to rebuy Pro if you're using a Market auth app.
  • With price $2.99, PayPal's fee is $0.42 and Market's fee is $0.90. More than twice, but since on PayPal I need to pay effort for device changing request, both are fine for me.
As a user I'll suggest you to buy from Market if you can. It's much convenient.
I have also heard PayPal will join Market's payment, maybe it will be the time I totally shift to Market buying.

Stupid F/C bug in 1.2.2

In Meridian Hermit 1.2.2 there's a major bug, which will make everyone turning data collection off force closes every time.
First of all I want to say I'm not forcing you to enable data collection. If I want to do so I'll just remove the option or doing that secretly.
Okay, so what's the problem? This is the buggy code:

  if (tracker != null) {
    // do tracks...

If user disable data collection, the tracker will be a null pointer. and thus F/C on a NullPointerException.
Yeah, very stupid bug. It of course need to be this:

  if (tracker != null) {
    // do tracks...

I apologize for the bug but all test phones I use was turning collection on :p
You know it's hard to develope and test everything by one man blah blah.
Sorry for the inconvenience again, in addition to tens of mails I got and replied X_X

Oct 14, 2010

New twitter account for Meridian

Since the old twitter account is shifted to my private social and using Japanese, here's the new account for Meridian in English:!/Meridian_Andro

But Google's support really sucks

The country problem took me ONLY five days to know how to handle, but now there's another problem:
  • Android Market console says it has payed out some money
  • Can see nothing in my AdSense account
  • Contact support again and this time get NOTHING helpful
  • Nine days ago, by the way
  • It seems like the support team can't understand my problem at all
  • I have reported a broken link but get no touch on it
  • My AdSense account's "payout history" becomes a broken link, for a week

Aug 24, 2010

That's why I didn't want to make Meridian can be installed to SD card

Well OK, you guys want to install Meridian to SD card without knowleges, so Meridian is now installable to SD.
And for those can't find where the widget is, put Meridian back to your phone and reboot.

Jul 5, 2010

Google continues messing up Android Market

I think this is the point - Meridian requires bluetooth permissions (to play music through them), so it disappears.
My complains are same as theirs. Android Market team really sucks.

Jun 21, 2010

New App: Queek Music Shuffler

Just want to easy and shuffle play your massive lovely songs? Try Queek!
Queek is a great tool for people have lots of songs in their phone, and is tired to index them all the time.
Just play. Auto shuffle, auto skipping songs you don't like that much.
For indexing and play lists, please try Meridian Media Player.

Jun 17, 2010

Bad news and bad news for Android

I wish this article is just an unreal rumor.
There are so many things and issues to fix and so many functions to make, and they decide to fight against their so-called "partners" huh?
Absolutely Google works so bad with cooperations, the Market payment region extending process is fucking slow, my app disappears from Market and I have no some more detailed information of what's happening, Google does not have a support mechanism, I just keep apologizing to my users.
And I'm still stuck with Android's weak multimedia framework, the AdMob component does not show up, the Google Adsense is another US only feature, blah blah.
It was a bright future to me a year ago, but now it's filled with darkness. Android is running toward a wrong direction.
Wish it's not too late to join Apple's side.

Jun 11, 2010

Meridian Pioneer is currently invisible on Market for 1.5 and 1.6 devices

In fact I don't know what's going on, and I don't think it's me messed up something.
I keep the min SDK as 3 and target SDK as 4, they should not act like that.
Google says it's fixed three days ago, but no, it's not.
I'm asking Google and finding some resolution to avoid this, but with no luck yet.
Hope we can overcome this soon.

May 25, 2010

Android Developers Blog: Android Application Error Reports

Android Developers Blog: Android Application Error Reports

Yeah I have received the bug reports from users. This is very, very helpful and cool feature. Thank you Google!
But I wonder what devices get this? I thought this is a Froyo feature, but I have seen some reports from Droid. They're not getting Froyo right?
And I also don't have it on my Nexus One running Froyo. There's just one Force Close button there. It's not from the OTA but a 44 MB, maybe it's the difference?

Apr 27, 2010

If there's anyone want to know Meridian Conservative's update frequency

It's planed to be one update for two month to a quarter.

Apr 19, 2010

Flurry seems to be not usable for me

The region is a mess (Australia 80%? What are you talking about?), the version tag is not working, the device and carrier information is totally wrong, and the help center does not reply any of my mails.
Maybe it's time to throw it out and use Google analytic only.

Apr 1, 2010

So people who complain about updating...

does not read the app's description too.
They just don't know Conservative version is there, huh.
Maybe I'll put a dialog in Pioneer...Oh no, they won't read that either.

Mar 29, 2010

Lossless audio support of Meridian

Thank to avs234 and his work Andless, from 0.15.0 Meridian supports lossless playback including flac, ape, alac, wav, wave pack, and mpc.

Some words to say:

- You can play these files as normal ones, but tags (and thus album arts) won't work because Android does not scan them. Meridian does not have its own tag parsing system.

- flac cues are not supported, because there is an integration problem with current cue system.


Mar 24, 2010

Double version try - Pioneer and Conservative of Meridian

Today I published a new app on Market called "Meridian Player Conservative", which is essentially Meridian itself, but is more so-called stable (0.13.1 by now), and will update in lower frequency.
"Meridian Player Pioneer" is what "Noble" is, and will go updating in current frequency.
People don't want to be annoyed by lots of update, please use the Conservative version. If you don't care, you don't need to change anything.
Hope this can satisfy each kind of users more.

Mar 18, 2010

Why there're only few not-so-good apps with equalizer or extra codec supporting on Android Market

Android framework has a MediaPlayer class, which will do file recognizing, dispatching, decoding, rendering, and synchronizing for apps.
Most video/music player apps just call this awesome class, and it works as you can see.

However, if you want a equalizer or implementing your own codec, the story is all different.
MediaPlayer class does not support those features, and Android splits Java codes and native C/C++ codes into two parts.
Main functions of MediaPlayer is native code, and bound with the device using special signatures. Apps on Market have no way to change that, and pure Java code is too slow to process such heavy-loading work.

Okay, so some people say you can use NDK.
Yes, you can use NDK to make your own MediaPlayer --- The WHOLE MediaPlayer.
You need to write (or copy) your own code of recognizing, dispatching, decoding, rendering, synchronizing, and all other MediaPlayer efforts. Oh, don't forget to plug in EVERY codec you support, since you can't access Android's default decoder in NDK.

So what's the result? You can try Audio Player WithEQ and yxflash to see what they provide.
Believe me, they pay much effort and have very good tech on these app. But the quality says how this is hard to do.

Meridian won't go that way. Still waiting Android to publish a better solution for this.

Mar 16, 2010

Meridian 0.13.0 is released, with new widget and album art fixes

  • (Pro) 4x3 widget with album art
  • Button style settings
  • Fix customized album art now showing bug
  • Fix phone start-up f/c bug
  • App version number shows in preference, about page, and FAQ page on title bar
The new widget looks like below. Also, you can change the button style now (Only two styles so far though). Please do it from preference as you can see.

Mar 5, 2010

Meridian 0.12.0 is released

Change note:
  • Add insert after current feature
  • Fix ID3 editing not working bug
  • Fix media auto scanning not working bug
  • Fix bug that can't find media files in root folder of sdcard
  • Fix album not showing bug in genre view
  • Fix sorting problem in Browser
  • Fix customized album arts are not shown in album list bug
  • Fix video zooming wrong when come back from another view
  • Prevent Nexus One rotating video goes to white bug
Many people complaining about the update frequency (even after dropping to once per week), but well, you can just don't update it if you don't have any problem.
For those going to uninstall I can only say, go ahead. If you really don't like updates, Meridian is bad for you.

[Meridian] "Insert After Current" feature

After 0.12.0, Meridian supports a feature called "Insert After Current".
It is quite same as inserting into playlist in default Music app, but it uses PlayQ instead.
Basically, it will create a new PlayQ and shift to it automatically. The auto-created PlayQ is named "Now Playing (x)", where x is a sequential number.
However, if you add other songs into this "Now Playing" PlayQ, it will just be added into it, without creating new PlayQs.
Hope you guys will like it.

Jan 27, 2010

Meridian Pro Auto-buying is now online

In past two days I studied about Python and Google App Engine, and now the auto-buying site is working. Wow, what an era.
From now you just need to tap the Upgrade button in MENU, check out with PayPal on your phone, then you'll get an e-mail with authorization information.
If you meet any problem with auto buying please let me know.

Jan 26, 2010

About Meridian's Pro version

Meridian has a beta-version Pro version now - you can buy it here.
There's some unavoidable reasons for this bad type selling:
  • I'm a Taiwanese, and Google Market does not offer selling paid apps in Taiwan yet. I'll complain Google is soooooo slow on this, but the only thing I can do is to wait.
  • I'm now generating keys manually, and since I can not use full time on Meridian, massive orders will knock me out.
  • The "Upgrade" button in Meridian is planned to be enabled if one of above two problem is solved. I'm asking about someone to make a PayPal-paying webpage that can automatically generate keys, but no response yet.
  • Pro version by now does not have many features. At least I want to implement PlayQ picking and another music playing view.
  • By the way, I plan to sell Pro version with $2.99.
I'm sorry for the inconvinience and know it's a hard competition on Android's local file multimedia player. I beg you for the patience, please wait with us.

Thank you!

All about Meridian's data collection

Since version 0.7.1 of Meridian Noble, free version of Meridian starts to collect anonymous user data for developing.
The mechanism  is using Flurry and Google Analytics, which will collect data for:
  • Meridian Errors. This is most important, as with this we can get information for debugging without requesting users to install Log Collections or so on.
  • The actions of Meridian, like one video play, browsing using which tab, headset button pressed, etc. This is used for counting what mechanism is more used, so we'll do more effort on those features.
  • Your device model, carrier, and firmware version. This is used for device-dependant features priority, for example, if there's still a lot of people using Android 1.5 devices, Meridian will keep supporting 1.5, instead of going to a minimum 1.6 release.
And Meridian will NOT collect the informations like:
  • Meridian does NOT collect what's in your phone or SD card. We will be reported you played a music or video, from artist or album, but we don't know what it actually is.
  • Meridian does NOT collect anything related to your Google account, like your account name, mail, calendar, everything.
  • Meridian does NOT collect your location information, other than which country you live (using IP information). At the very first 0.7.0 it did, but now removed.
  • Meridian does NOT collect your call information. It only knows the phone is hooked or not.
  • Meridian does NOT collect your phone number, messages, or contacts.
This data collection can be disabled in Pro version. For Pro version info please check here.

Jan 12, 2010

Auto Starting Bug

This is a confirmed major bug, but I still can't find the reason.
I have gotten several different reports of auto starting (Disconnecting headset, disconnecting bluetooth, end of a call, etc.), but all of them do not appear when I do it in my office :(
In fact myself sometimes meet the auto-start, but I have totally no idea since I'm not taking log yet. Hope the logged version now will produce more hint.
...First of all, I can only wait it occurs. Grrr.