Getting Acquainted with the Android Development Tools

Now that the tools of the trade are installed, I introduce you to the SDK and some of the tools that are included with it.

Navigating the Android SDK

Whoa! You find a lot of folders in the SDK! Don't worry; the folder structure of the Android SDK is pretty easy to understand when you get the hang of it. You need to understand the structure of the SDK to master it. Table 4-1 outlines what each folder is and what it contains. Open the SDK with Windows Explorer or Mac Finder.

Table 4-1 Folders in the Android SDK

SDK Folder Description
extras Contains the drivers for Android devices. If you connect your Android device to the computer, you need to install this driver so that you can view, debug, and push applications to your phone via the ADT.
tools Contains various tools that are available for use during development — debugging tools, view-management tools, and build tools, to name a few.
temp Provides a temporary swap for the SDK. At times, the SDK may need a temporary space to perform some work. This folder is where that work takes place.
samples Contains a bunch of sample projects for you to play with. Full source code is included.
platforms Contains the platforms that you target when you build Android applications, such as folders named android-8 (which is Android 2.2), android-4 (which is Android 1.6), and so on.
platform-tools Contains common tools specific to Android development.
docs Contains a local copy ...

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