Posted by Biswajeet Mallik, Program Manager, Google Developers India.
Image from Cloud Community Days India
Earlier this year, ten Google Developer Groups in India came together to host Google Cloud Community Days India, a two day event helping developers study for their upcoming Cloud Certification exams. To address the rising demand for professional certifications, the virtual event hosted over 63,000 developers, covered four main exam areas, and welcomed nine speakers. This was the second edition to the event series which started in 2019 in India.
By providing expert learning materials and mentorship, the event uniquely prepared developers for the Associate Cloud Engineer, Professional Data Engineer, Professional Cloud Machine Learning Engineer, and Professional Cloud Architect exams. Learn more below.
Acing the four key certifications
The Cloud Community Days event focused on helping developers study for four milestone certifications, tailored to engineers at four different stages of their career. The goal: help Google Developer Group members obtain the right credentials to improve their job prospects.
The event broke participants into breakout sessions based on which exam they were preparing to take. Since the certifications targeted professionals of all skill levels, study groups ranged from early career associates to late career executives. The learning groups were organized around the following certifications:
Associate Cloud Engineer:
This learning session was created to help early career developers complete the first stepping stone exam. In particular, learning materials and speakers were curated to guide participants who had no prior experience, or very little, working on the Google Cloud Platform.
Workshops were mainly dedicated to assisting programmers who were familiar with building different applications but wished to show employers that they could deploy them on Google Cloud Platform.
The next group brought together were data practitioners with special interests in data visualization and decision making. Workshops and learning activities helped these developers hone their large scale data and data driven decision making abilities.
Improving these skills are essential for passing the Professional Data Engineers certification and growing a programmer’s early career.
For these sessions, the Google Developer Group Cloud community paired experienced programmers with a significant interest in ML to form their study groups. The main driver in these learning activities was to help seasoned developers gain a deeper understanding of how to utilize Google Cloud ML services.
With significant emphasis being placed on machine learning in the ecosystem right now, Google Developer Group community leaders felt this certification could help developers make the leap into new leadership roles.
Lastly, this event paired experienced Cloud executives and professionals working in leading capacities for their organizations. For these sessions, speakers and activities had a specific scope: help high level professions be at the forefront of Google Cloud Platforms innovative capabilities.
Specifically, the Professional Cloud Architect Certification was created to help senior software engineers better design, scale and develop highly secure and robust applications.
Overall, the community put together these resources to help developers feel more confident in their abilities, obtain tangible credentials, and in turn increase access to better job opportunities. As two participants recalled the event,
“The session on Qwiklabs was so helpful, and taught me how to anticipate problems and then solve them. Cloud Community Days inspired me to take the next step with DevOps and Google Cloud.”
“This was the first time I attended the Google Developer Group event! It is an awesome package for learning in one place. All the fun activities were engaging and the panelist discussion was also very insightful. I feel proud to be a part of this grand GDG event.”
Start learning with Google Developer Groups
With Google Developer Groups, find a space to learn alongside a group of curious developers, all coming together to advance their careers from withinside a caring community of peers.
Want to know more about what Cloud Community days were like? Then watch their live recording below.
Posted by Chris Sells, PM for the Flutter developer experience
This week is a big one for Flutter! Today, at Google Developer Days, our flagship conference for Chinese developers, we used the keynote to announce our latest stable release: Flutter 1.9. This release is our biggest update yet with more than 1,500 PRs from more than 100 contributors. The new features and updates span a wide range, from support for macOS Catalina and iOS 13 to improved tooling support, as well as new Dart language features and new Material widgets.
At the keynote, we also announced a major milestone for Flutter’s web support, with the successful integration of Flutter’s web support into the main Flutter repository, allowing developers to write for mobile, desktop and web with the same codebase. And we showcased Tencent, one of the largest worldwide internet brands, who are using Flutter in a growing number of their mobile apps.
Let’s take a deeper look at this week’s news, starting with what’s new in Flutter 1.9.
Supporting macOS Catalina and iOS 13
As Apple prepares to release Catalina, the latest version of macOS, we’ve worked hard to make sure that Flutter is ready for you to upgrade. We’ve updated the end-to-end tooling experience to ensure it works well on Catalina and with Xcode 11. This includes adding support for the new Xcode build system, enabling 64-bit support throughout the toolchain, and simplifying platform dependencies.
Finally, in the latest development builds, you can now turn on experimental support for Bitcode, which is Apple’s platform-independent intermediate representation of a compiled program. Submitting your app as Bitcode allows Apple to optimize your binary in the future without resubmission, and opens the door to Flutter potentially supporting platforms like watchOS and tvOS that require Bitcode for app submission.
New Material widgets
The Material components and features also get an upgrade in Flutter 1.9. Material is one of the world’s leading open-source design systems, providing a comprehensive, flexible set of building blocks for implementing interactive user experiences across many platforms.
In this release, we provide several new widgets including ToggleButtons (left) and ColorFiltered (right).
The ToggleButtons widget bundles a row of ToggleButton widgets together, often composed of a set of Icon and Text widgets, to form a set of buttons with fully customizable look and behavior. Do you want single selection or multi-select? Do you want to require at least one selection or allow none? Do you want square or rounded edges, thick or thin borders, icons or text, etc? You can see some of these options above on the left and see how they’re implemented in the ToggleButtons sample.
As shown in the image above on the right, the ColorFiltered widget allows you to recolor a tree of child widgets just like you can recolor an image using one of several different algorithms (some of which are shown in the example screenshot above). This has many uses, for example, handling color blindness accessibility issues for your users. To see this in action, check out the ColorFiltered sample.
Worldwide language support
We’ve also added support for 24 new languages, from Afrikaans to Zulu.
Dart 2.5 release
The end-to-end developer experience depends not just on the features of Flutter but also on the underlying language itself. As part of the Flutter 1.9 release, we are also releasing Dart 2.5. Dart 2.5 includes a pre-release of Foreign Function Interface (FFI) support, providing native extensions so Dart can call directly into code written in C. It also introduces machine learning-powered code completions for the IDE. You can learn about both of these and more in the Dart 2.5 announcement.
With this release, new projects default to Swift instead of Objective-C and Kotlin instead of Java for iOS and Android projects respectively. Since many packages are written with Swift, making it the default language removes manual work for adding those packages to an app created with the default options. Swift 5 is ABI stable, and thanks to app thinning work Apple has done in recent releases, the Swift dynamic libraries no longer need to be included in the distribution package for iOS 12.2 or greater, reducing the size of Swift applications compared to previous releases.
And as Kotlin is now the default language for new projects in Android Studio, it seems natural to make the language switch for Android also. These options are now the default for both the flutter CLI tool and the IntelliJ/Android Studio and VS Code plugins for Flutter, but you can always switch back to Objective-C or Java if you prefer.
Additionally, we’ve been working to improve Flutter’s error messages by making them more readable, more concise and more actionable.
The Flutter User Experience team has led the charge on this project; you can read the details in a separate blog post covering the work on structured error display. We’ve just started to apply these new patterns, and you can expect more error messages to take advantage of this work in coming releases.
Flutter on the web
And finally, we are very happy to announce that the flutter_web repository is deprecated now that web support has been merged into the main flutter repository! What this means is that if you have the latest builds of Flutter from the master or dev channel, you can target the web with the latest experimental version of Flutter by running flutter run -d chrome.
When you create a project, Flutter now creates a web runner via a minimal web/index.html file that bootstraps your web-compiled Flutter code. With that file in place, you can use the Flutter CLI tool or the IDE plugins to edit and run Flutter apps on the web.
Above is a screenshot of VS Code with web support enabled for Flutter. Notice the web/index.html file, along with the dropdown list allowing you to choose Chrome as your target development device. Support for web output with Flutter is still at an early phase, but this release represents a major step forward towards enabling production support for web development with Flutter.
At the end of July, we announced an early adopter program designed to get a group of select Flutter applications deployed to production on the web over the next six to twelve months. We received over 1,000 submissions to the program. Unfortunately, we don’t have the capacity to support everyone who applied to join the program, but now web support is merged into the Flutter framework, we’re excited that everyone can now experiment with this capability.
Some community experiments have already showcased Flutter’s web output:
Flutter Widget Livebook (left) is built with Flutter for web and shows Flutter widgets running live in your browser. Panache (right) is a tool for creating themes for Flutter which you can then download and drop directly into your code.
We’re thrilled to see continuing fast growth and adoption of for Flutter. Here at Google, hundreds of developers are working on more than twenty projects using Flutter, including some that are released and many that are still in development. At GDD China this week, we highlighted how Tencent, one of the largest internet brands, is using Flutter pervasively for a wide variety of projects:
Switching gears to something just for fun, if you have Google Assistant on your phone or one of the Google Nest Hub devices, try saying “OK Google. Talk to Flutter Widget Quiz.” We loved seeing this community-powered quiz that tests your knowledge of Flutter.
We love the support we’ve received from the developer community, whether in the form of blogs and articles, published apps or issues and code contributions. For more details on upgrading to Flutter 1.9, including details on how to fix any breaking changes that you might experience as you migrate your code, check out the detailed Flutter 1.9 release notes.
Posted by Jason Titus, Vice President, Developer Product Group
I'm happy to share that we opened registrations for the European installment of our global event series — Google Developer Days (GDD). Google Developer Days showcase our latest developer product and platform updates to help you develop high quality apps, grow & retain an active user base, and tap into tools to earn more.
Google Developer Days — Europe (GDD Europe) will take place on September 5-6 2017, in Krakow, Poland. We'll feature technical talks on a range of products including Android, the Mobile Web, Firebase, Cloud, Machine Learning, and IoT. In addition, we'll offer opportunities for you to join hands-on training sessions, and 1:1 time with Googlers and members of our Google Developers Experts community. We're looking forward to meeting you face-to-face so we can better understand your needs and improve our offerings for you.
If you're interested in joining us at GDD Europe, registration is now open.
Can't make it to Krakow? We've got you covered. All talks will be livestreamed on the Google Developers YouTube channel, and session recordings will be available there after the event. Looking to tune into the action with developers in your own neighborhood? Consider joining a GDD Extended event or organizing one for your local developer community .
Whether you're planning to join us in-person or remotely, stay up-to-date on the latest announcements using #GDDEurope on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.
We're looking forward to seeing you in Europe soon!