03 January 2008

Rising to the Challenge

I think I have a really cool job, because I get to do a little bit of all those other cool jobs that you wish you could have. Today, I get to be like the Chairman from Iron Chef.

If you've never seen the show, the premise is that a slightly mysterious and rather eccentric guy known as the Chairman fulfilled his dream of presiding over a huge, extravagant cooking tournament. In a similar vein, today I get to make the announcement that the Android Developer Challenge is now "open for business" and accepting your submissions. The excitement! The anticipation! The pageantry!

Okay, not so much pageantry. But I do think it's pretty exciting, and I can't wait to see what you developers will come up with. Some of you have already given us a little taste of the cool stuff you're working on, and I'm eager to see what everyone else is cooking up.

To submit your application for the Challenge, click here to go to the Submission Page. Once there, you'll pick from one of three versions of the form based on whether you're working alone, in a team, or for an organized company. We've tried to keep things simple, so all you have to do is choose the form that applies to you, fill it out, attach the .apk file for your application, and you're done.

You also have the opportunity to upload a file containing documentation about your application. Any readable format is okay, although we prefer PDF or plain text. This file can contain anything that you think is important. For instance, you might include instructions on how to use your program, a design document that describes the next steps you plan to take, or a narrative that explains the vision of your application. We do ask that you submit your documentation and application in English, so that all the judges (who will be chosen by members of the Open Handset Alliance) can easily read it.

It's also very important to look at the Terms and Conditions. These are the rules for the Challenge and describe what you need to do to participate. Read them carefully!

The submission period is open until March 3, 2008, so you don't need to rush to submit your application just yet. March 3 is definitely a hard deadline though, so you must have your applications submitted by then. If you choose to submit now, you can always re-submit a later version of your application closer to the end. (I'd bet the participants on Iron Chef would love to be able to refine and re-submit their works to the judges.)

Maybe it's no Kitchen Stadium, but I still think we're in for a lot of fun. I hope everyone is having a great time developing for Android, and I hope to soon see the fruits of your labor. Good luck, and happy coding!