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Submitted by Derrick on

I have a Sony BluRay player/Google TV that I really love, even though so far the apps for it have been sparse to say the least. I'm still holding out hope that the platform will really catch on and we'll see some really cool new innovative things happen for interactive Internet tv, but in the meantime I guess I'll make things work to fit my needs. This is an example of how I recently did just that.

Like any good android device, Google TV has a home screen where you can add widgets and apps for easy access. Google TV also has the Google Play app market, so you can download new apps and widgets for your tv just like you can with your smart phone. All very cool. However, there are some restrictions to what android apps will work on Google TV. The app has to be able to work on a vastly different size/shape screen, and it can't rely on phone specific features, such as an accelerometer, which a tv obviously does not have. If an app does not fit these requirements, it will not show up in the Google Play app market.

For whatever reason, out of the millions of available weather widget apps for android, none of them are compatible with Google TV. This is sad because one of the most handy things to have show up on your TV whenever you go to the home screen would be the current weather, and a forecast for the next few days. Everytime I look at the Google Play app market I search for weather widget apps, with no luck. The closest currently is the steam punk clock, but it is sort of funky looking, and is not a widget.

So as any respectable tech junkie would, I decided that as I have found a need, I would build the app to fill that need. I signed up for a wunderground API key, and then for a lark typed in a google search for 'android weather widget tutorial.'. One of the top results was:, a sample android app to show aspiring tech junkies like myself how to make android widgets, complete with a full blown apk to sideload onto your device,

I tested it out on my Sony Google TV, and tada! Exactly what I was looking for.

Submitted by Derrick on

NYT op-ed on how young people are less and less willing to move.

Especially liked this comment from a Houston blogger:

I think the rise of the Internet is a big factor - it can satisfy those bouts of boredom or restlessness that push people to move, either virtually or by helping you discover new options in your own region - plus I think we might also be learning the true value of social networks and how they relate to our happiness. In any case, it means Houston will need to work harder on growing our own highly educated talent, because importing it is just getting harder and harder.

Submitted by Derrick on

The MS 150 is an annual road bike ride from Houston to Austin to support Multiple Sclerosis Research. The ride takes place on April 21 and 22, 2012 and covers 150 miles. I would appreciate your support in this great cause. You can learn more about the MS 150 ride and foundation, or contribute by visiting: