About me

My name is Ronald Lovejoy and I am a software engineer living outside of Austin, Texas. I am a senior engineer with Mutual Mobile, a tech agency that builds mobile applications. My specialty is Android development.


Contact info

Skype: rglovejoy
Email: rglovejoy at gmail dot com


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Catching up
by Ronald Lovejoy
Updated 11 April 2015 at 19:30

A lot has happened since I last updated this blog. Some of the highlights:

  • I met and married a wonderful woman who is from here in Texas and we will be having our first child (a boy) next month.

  • I am still with Mutual Mobile, approaching my fourth anniversary with the company. A lot of interesting projects have come my way, and I've been able to avoid doing a lot of business travel.

  • In 2013, my wife and I bought a house way out in the Austin suburbs. By coming out here, we were able to avoid the high prices and property taxes that are emdemic to Austin, yet my commute time is about 40-45 minutes each way. Jennifer was working in the Round Rock schools and so her commute was much shorter, about twenty minutes.

    I think we got a good deal on the house. It is an Arts and Crafts style house that was built a little more than one-hundred years ago. It has what are known in the trades as "good bones": it sits on a pier-and-beam foundation and the wooden frame was made with much harder wood than used in the houses of today. We were easily able to put down twenty percent and so we do not have to pay for mortgage insurance.

  • A lot of my projects have fallen by the wayside, because I have been so busy working on projects for my job at Mutual Mobile. Back in May 2011, I mentioned that I was in some sort of submarine mode, because I was working on a music app for Android. Well, that never went anywhere, and I have also abandoned the apps that I have put on the Google Play store. I feel a little bad about orphaning them, but not too bad, since they were not very good apps.

  • Thomas, my cat, died back in 2013. He was almost 18, which is pretty old for a cat. I still have Mr. Hobbes, who is now about 11 or 12. I'm not sure of his age, because he was a stray cat who looked like he was already fully grown when he came to live with me. There is also Princess Catherine, who we adopted several months after Thomas died. She was an older kitten, about six months old or so when we got her. It's interesting how they have such different personalities.

I have a new job!
by Ronald Lovejoy
Updated 17 May 2011 at 10:30

Starting on 31 May 2011, I will be joining the development team at Mutual Mobile in Austin, Texas. It will be a big change for me, but I am looking forward to the challenges and opportunities this presents.

The big challenge, of course, is getting all of my stuff here. It is not as simple as moving from California, since Puerto Rico is an island in the Caribbean. I have already moved one of my cats, Hobbes, here, and I will be getting Thomas (my other cat) here in the next week or so. Delta Airlines has been pretty good about letting me take them with me.

I have already made arrangements for an apartment, and I am looking into getting a new car rather than a used one. So far, Austin has been very nice and pleasant. The people here have proven to be very friendly, and there is a lot to do here.

Submarine Mode
by Ronald Lovejoy
Updated 07 May 2011 at 13:00

Lately, I have been busy putting together a new Android app, which is why I have not been posting much lately. I was inspired to write a music app by this Flash application, ToneMatrix. It was written by Andre Michelle, a French developer who is involved with AudioTool. Everyone should check it out; you could spend hours playing with it.

So, I wanted to write something similar, but which can do more stuff. For instance, I want the user to be able to choose a key, say C Major or f♯ minor. Also, I am setting it up so that the user can vary the tempo and set which octaves to use. All in all, it is a lot of work, but I think it will be cool and worth my while.

Going Mobile
by Ronald Lovejoy
Updated 18 April 2011 at 17:40

I have track 2 of side 2 of the Who's Who's Next going through my head right now as I am writing this. Just like Pete and the gang, this website is "Going Mobile". If you are looking at this with your phone, then you will see the difference.

It's actually kind of trivial to detect mobile devices, as long as you have a good library. In this site, I am using Mobile_Detect.php, which is covered by the MIT License. To use it, make sure you include mobile_detect.php file in your script. What I did next was this:

include( "Mobile_Detect.php" );
$detect = new Mobile_Detect();
$isMobile = $detect->isMobile();
 .
 .
 .
if( $isMobile )
{
  // mobile-centric stuff here
}
else
{
  // do something else
}

The Mobile Detect site mentioned above has more examples to try out.

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?
by Ronald Lovejoy
Updated 17 April 2011 at 16:40

This page now has German language support, mostly because I had a few hours on Sunday to play around with Google Translate. I have also set up the Mandelbrot's Dragon site to work in Spanish, German, French and Japanese, as well as English.

In order to view the site in these other languages, you need to set the preferred or default language in your browser's preference dialog. Where this may reside depends on your brand of browser. For Firefox/Mozilla users, it may be found in the Edit menu, where it says Preferences.

"This Site Now Speaks Spanish!" or "¡Este Sitio de Web Ya Habla Español!"
by Ronald Lovejoy
Updated 16 April 2011 at 16:00

If you have your browser set to use Spanish, you will notice that the sidebar and the buttons above are in Spanish. It's a really easy feature to implement with PHP. In your script, just make sure you have a function like this available:

function detect_lang()
{
	$_AL = strtolower( $_SERVER[ "HTTP_ACCEPT_LANGUAGE" ] );
	return substr( $_AL, 0, 2 );
}

Then, you can use the return value to choose a string to display. For example:

$lang = detect_lang();
.
.
.
if( $lang == "es" )
	echo "¡Soy rico!";
else
	echo "I'm rich!";