Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Celestial Bodies 1.2 update released!

New update to Celestial Bodies! What's that? A new update? But isn't that semantically redundant? Why yes it is. But only semantically so! In all other ways it is practically dundant! For it is time to throw out your old Celestial Bodies and slap on this swanky new version. As you may notice from the image below, the star has been given a new look. I think you'll find it appealing. That was the intent of course! There is also the exciting addition of asteroids. Asteroids? Yes asteroids! I'm asking you to be excited about rocks. And I'm sure you will oblige for these rocks are something special. But wait there's more. The settings page has been updated with far greater control over parameters both visual and interactive. Be sure to check it out. And if you find yourself scratching your head over the meaning of boxes checked and unchecked, radio buttons and sliders respectively radioed and slider-ed, stop molesting that scalp! For there is a helpful bit of information at the top of the page under the equally helpful title "Instructions," that should un-muddy concepts theretofore muddied!

But what about new bugs? Well I haven't quite found any yet but I'm sure you can. If you do please drop me a line. Or leave a maddeningly unhelpful comment, preferably with a low star rating to really drive home your point. The one-way nature of the comments system will ensure that I will be unable to helpfully answer your problem. Bonus points for confusing features for bugs and complaining about things that can easily be disabled in the oft-neglected settings page!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Burning Flame Live Wallpaper 1.0 released!

Hot new live wallpaper from gentlemandroid! Light up that boring old home screen with an exciting dance of flame. Burning Flame produces beautiful displays of interactive combustion. Slide a finger across your screen and ignite your display. Burn through your battery life visually, but not literally. Burning Flame is dynamic yet economic, with a minuscule filesize and a modest battery consumption. And yes, all of this can be yours without setting your wallet on fire!

  • Customization: Choose between 36 different color schemes for the flames. Select a background color of your choice. Choice of pattern display including a morphing star animation, the current time of day and flames licking the bottom of the screen.
  • Interaction: New flames follow your fingers across the screen. Change colors with a tap of the screen.
  • Performance: Tweak render settings for better performance or longer battery life.
  • Music Visualization: Multiple music visualizations will react to music playing on the device, including multiple waveforms as well as a frequency spectrum.

Full Version:

Lite Version:


After purchase simply long press on your current wallpaper to bring up the shortcut menu. Navigate to Wallpapers / Live Wallpapers, then select Burning Flame LiveWallpaper. You can then select Set wallpaper to start using your new live wallpaper. You can also select Settings to modify the way the simulation is rendered.

If you find yourself concerned about battery life you can adjust the Frame-Rate and Flame Resolution settings. The default frame-rate is 15 and should be suitable for most phones. Users of older models may wish to set this at around 10 or use the lower resolution setting. Conversely for a smoother experience, users of newer phones should not have a problem running at 20-25 fps at the cost of course of a little more battery life. Usage patterns vary from user to user so experiment to find what is suitable for you.

Friday, September 17, 2010

The reception so far...

I don't really know who might be reading this blog on any regular basis but I certainly won't let a silly thing like readership stop me from addressing some of the comments I've gotten so far on Celestial Bodies. After all, the abysmal train-wreck that is Google Market leaves me no option for direct response.

User Wired opines:
Good LW, but the Music Visualiser needs work. Looks terrible with fast & loud electronic music. Options for sensitivity and views would help
Well it looks as though it falls to me to be the one to reveal the fact that your fast & loud electronic music is as ghastly looking as it is sounding. You see the music visualizer simply uses the planets' orbits to display the waveform of the currently playing audio. It is not a beat detection system or anything fancy like that. There is no 'sensitivity' when it comes to how things look. They just are. Naked and unbridled! That said I shall endeavor to investigate possible alternative schemes as I doubt fast and loud electronic music will be going away any time soon.

User Blake notices:

Looks cool but gets all jacked up when I'm running scanner radio goes back to normal when I turn it off. Happens when playing music too Evo 4g

This reminds me of a similarly curious thing I've noticed with my refrigerator. When I place items inside they become cold, but when I take them out they tend to warm up again. It's almost as if the refrigerator was designed to accomplish this. I tried to read the instruction manual once to determine if this was indeed its intended function but then my eyes just glazed over and I was later found in an alley miles from my home, delirious and without pants.

User Jessica decries:

Cant figure out how 2 open it

Unfortunately I have recently discovered that the English language, while otherwise quite sufficient for normal communication, simply lacks the expressive power to encapsulate at once an extensive description of the incredible features of Celestial Bodies as well as a full instruction manual all within the wickedly terse 330 character limit imposed by the sadistic and no doubt drug addled brains of the engineers of Google Market. Upon recovering from this earthshaking revelation, I foolishly decided to use this minuscule space to discuss features and tout capabilities, all the while trusting in the fatuous notion that users could somehow retain the knowledge gleaned from browsing dozens of other live wallpaper listings and/or using other live wallpapers, or failing that, to come to this very blog and read the instructions helpfully placed in the first post announcing release of said software. Jessica has rightly punished my presumptuous confidence in her ability to follow instructions with a fitting 1 star rating. I'm sorry Jessica. I do hope one day you finally crack the mystery of the long press and wallpaper selection screen!

User SuperMike riddles:

Would had definately been a 5star moment cept the restart does my box in. Fix it and u can ave ya 5 :)
I must say I'm not sure what you mean when you refer to your box being done in by restarts which is terribly inconvenient as the deciphering of this message would seemingly award me a much coveted 5 star rating currently being shrewdly held for ransom. I thank you for the 4 star consolation prize.

User Andrew befuddles:

If it wasn't only in landscape mode it would be better otherwise cool evo

I'm not sure what to make of this comment. In actuality the wallpaper ignores changes in orientation so it really knows nothing of portrait or landscape mode. Ignoring this inconvenient fact, of the several views available there is only one that could really be said to be in landscape mode, the Zarathustra view. If one is not satisfied with this view all one need do is poke one's screen with an otherwise unengaged finger to change it to one of several other views, all of which I imagine could be said to be running in portrait mode, making this comment all the more mysterious.

User Richard declares:

I like watching it when I'm on the toilet taking a dump, very cool.
Sure and this is high praise indeed! Admittedly, in the extensive testing leading up to Celestial Bodies' release little thought was given to how it might run in such an environment. Thankfully if Richard is to be believed, Celestial Bodies indeed runs phenomenally well in your typical bathroom setting even as one is involved in the busiest of businesses conducted.

I've received many conflicting reports about performance issues and freezes on the unfortunately underpowered Droid phone model. I am working on the issue and am very sorry for the inconvenience so far.

Many of the other comments have been quite positive and nearly all comments are uniformly written with amusingly terrible grammar.

I thank you all for your interest and feedback!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Celestial Bodies 1.0.1 updates released

First update released for Celestial Bodies full and lite versions. It is decidedly minor and merely addresses a few of the requests received so far.

Update 1.0.1:

- planet positions randomized upon reload
- move to SD card support*
- fix for rare crash on preview screen

* Some caveats on SD card support. Moving a live wallpaper to your SD card is not recommended unless storage space is a real issue. You will only save just under 400kb in this instance, and the live wallpaper will be unavailable whenever the SD card is unavailable to the phone. This occurs for instance before the phone has completely booted up and mounted the SD card. The SD card also becomes unavailable when the phone is connected via USB to your computer. In such cases the wallpaper will revert to a default setting until the SD card is restored and the live wallpaper reset.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Planets in motion, in motion!

The fine gentlemen at Android Central have done us the service of a full video review! Mr. Vanderbot was so excited he nearly lost his immutable composure. Emotions can be so difficult for him.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Celestial Bodies Lite Live Wallpaper released!

For those that found the sum of 99 pence simply too steep a summit to surmount fear not! The lite version of Celestial Bodies is now available in the Android Market. Rest easy knowing your dollars are safely tucked away in your wallet and out of reach of gentlemandroid's cold steel hands! Should you decide to take the plunge you will be rewarded with not only many exciting new features but also the comforting knowledge that you kept Mr. Vanderbot and I off the streets and out of the spanging racket for another day. Won't that feel warm!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Celestial Bodies Live Wallpaper 1.0 released!

If you're like me you're always looking for marvelous new things to do with your dollars. If you're not like me, then you're embarrassingly unaware of gentlemandroid's swanky new live wallpaper for your Android Phone. Listen with your eyes to the glorious music of the spheres. Marvel at the absurd dichotomy of a place at once so vastly beautiful to the eye and yet so utterly hostile to life itself. Make your next phone call from the cold dead reaches of outer space! Don't let one more inane tweet hit your phone without the light of a thousand dead suns to guide you. Download Celestial Bodies today for the low price of one weak American dollar!

  • Customization: Choose between Earth's familiar solar system with its nine traditional planets or have one randomly generated.
  • Interaction: Change views with a tap of the screen. Also responds as the user swipes to other screens.
  • Performance: Tweak render settings for better performance or longer battery life.
  • Music Visualization: Motion of planets and color of star will react to music playing on the device.


After purchase simply long press on your current wallpaper to bring up the shortcut menu. Navigate to Wallpapers / Live Wallpapers, then select Celestial Bodies LiveWallpaper. You can then select Set wallpaper to start using your new live wallpaper. You can also select Settings to modify the way the solar system is rendered.

If you find yourself concerned about battery life you can scroll down to the bottom of the Settings page and select Frame-rate Limit. Setting this to 15 fps or lower can cut battery use down significantly. Usage patterns vary from user to user so experiment to find what is suitable for you. You can also simplify the detail of the planet bodies to increase performance on older hardware.