Sunday, August 21, 2005

Progress Report – 2005-Aug-13

posted by LJ

When Jenny and I were just trying to make a program that records video from a mobile phone using the emulator, it displays "Record is null" (or a similar message). We thought that it was just because of the emulator. So we tried it also on a SE k500i and got the same result. We consulted Ms. Avestro regarding our problem. She said that not all Java phones support the MMAPI or only have partial support for it. We tried to come up with a solution and got the following:

1. Use Java and JNI to use C++ and access the camera.
Ms. Avestro told us that she had not encountered such a solution yet. Secondly, we cannot just use a Java phone using this implementation. If ever we go this path, we'll be needing a Symbian phone but this will only make the problem more difficult.
2. Research if we can use other java packages or specifications to achieve our goal.
We researched but couldn't find other technologies for the problem. It seems that J2ME is the only specification or package that can be used for video recording using Java.
3. Use pure C++.
The last option would be to use Symbian's C++ API to control the camera and record video clips. C++ will also be used to make the interface for the application. The downside to this approach is that only Symbian phones will be supported instead of the more common Java-enabled phones.

We have decided to go with option number 3. Ms. Avestro lent us some technical training material for development using the Nokia Series 60 API for C++. Therefore, we have to use a Symbian phone instead of a Java-enabled phone. We're looking for candidate phone units for the project. Right now, we're still deciding on what specific Nokia Series 60 phone to use. The decision probably won't be made until we are sure that we can successfully record video clips using our application. We are currently studying the Nokia training material.

Jenny and I have already done some GUI applications using Nokia's SDK and Emulator. We haven't tried it on a live phone, though. The SDK already has a library for controlling the camera but we're a bit concerned if it will work on a real phone and go back to our previous problem about controlling the camera.

Our lab computer already has the needed applications for mobile development. The installed applications include ActivePerl, Visual Studio 6, Nokia Development Suite and a JRE version 1.3.1 for the Nokia tools.


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