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Slide 1 - Android – An Overview Mihai Fonoage February 10, 2009
Slide 2 - 2 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 3 - 3 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 4 - 4 Introduction Android is a software stack for mobile devices that includes: Operating System Linux version 2.6 Services include hardware drivers, power, process and memory management; security and network. Middleware Libraries (i.e. SQLite, OpenGL, WebKit, etc) Android Runtime (Dalvik Virtual Machine and core libraries) Application Framework Abstraction for hardware access; manages application resources and the UI; provides classes for developing applications for Android Applications Native apps: Contacts, Phone, Browser, etc. Third-party apps: developer’s applications.
Slide 5 - 5 Introduction (cont.) Source: http://code.google.com/android/what-is-android.html
Slide 6 - 6 Introduction (cont.) What you need: Operating System: Microsoft Windows (>= XP), Mac OS X >= 10.4.8, Linux Android SDK JDK >= 5 (apps are written in Java) Development Environment: Android Development with Eclipse: Eclipse (+ Java Development Tools plug-in and Web Tools Platform) + Android Development Tools plug-in Motodev Studio for Android: http://developer.motorola.com/docstools/motodevstudio/ Installation notes: http://code.google.com/android/intro/installing.html.
Slide 7 - 7 Introduction (cont.) Design Considerations: Low processing speed Optimize code to run quick and efficiently Limited storage and memory Minimize size of applications; reuse and share data Limited bandwidth and high latency Design your application to be responsive to a slow (sometimes non-existent), intermittent network connection Limited battery life Avoid expensive operations Low resolution, small screen size “Compress” the data you want to display
Slide 8 - 8 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 9 - 9 Application Components and Lifecycle Components of your application: Activities Presentation layer for the application you are building For each screen you have, their will be a matching Activity An Activity uses Views to build the user interface Services Components that run in the background Do not interact with the user Can update your data sources and Activities, and trigger specific notifications
Slide 10 - 10 Android Application Overview (cont.) Components of your application: Content Providers Manage and share application databases Intents Specify what intentions you have in terms of a specific action being performed Broadcast Receivers Listen for broadcast Intents that match some defined filter criteria Can automatically start your application as a response to an intent
Slide 11 - 11 Android Application Overview (cont.) Application Lifecycle To free up resources, processes are being killed based on their priority: Critical Priority: foreground (active) processes Foreground activities; components that execute an onReceive event handler; services that are executing an onStart, onCreate, or onDestroy event handler. High Priority: visible (inactive) processes and started service processes Partially obscured activity (lost focus); services started. Low Priority: background processes Activities that are not visible; activities with no started service
Slide 12 - 12 Application Components and Lifecycle (cont.) Activity Lifecycle: Activities are managed as an activity stack (LIFO collection) Activity has four states: Running: activity is in the foreground Paused: activity has lost focus but it is still visible Stopped: activity is not visible (completely obscured by another activity) Inactive: activity has not been launched yet or has been killed.
Slide 13 - 13 Application Components and Lifecycle (cont.) Source: http://code.google.com/android/reference/android/app/Activity.html#ActivityLifecycle
Slide 14 - 14 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 15 - 15 User Interfaces Views The basic UI component Responsible for drawing and event handling Define your View through: Layout Resources (i.e. defined in main.xml file): From your Activity class code: setContentView(R.layout.main); ListView myListView = (ListView)findViewById(R.id.myListView); Inside your code: ListView myListView = new ListView(this); setContentView(myTextView); View Gallery: http://code.google.com/android/reference/view-gallery.html
Slide 16 - 16 User Interfaces (cont.) Layouts Specify the position of child views (controls) on the screen Common Layout Objects: FrameLayout: all child views are pinned to the top left corner of the screen LinearLayout: each child view is added in a straight line (vertically or horizontally) TableLayout: add views using a grid of rows and columns RelativeLayout: add views relative to the position of other views or to its parent. AbsoluteLayout: for each view you add, you specify the exact screen coordinate to display on the screen More info: http://code.google.com/android/devel/ui/layout.html
Slide 17 - 17 User Interfaces (cont.) Implement layouts in XML using external resources:
Slide 18 - 18 User Interfaces (cont.) Menus Concerned about having to much functionality on the screen => use menus Three menu types: Icon Menu: appears at the bottom of the screen when the user presses the Menu button. It can display icons and text for up to six menu items. Expanded Menu: displays a scrollable list of menu items not previously displayed in the icon menu. Submenu: displayed as a floating window. More info: http://code.google.com/android/reference/android/view/Menu.html
Slide 19 - 19 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 20 - 20 Binding applications and their components Intents Specify what intentions you have in terms of a specific action being performed Launch Activities Transition between the activities of your application Explicitly (using new Intent(current_application_context, new_activity_to_start);): Intent newIntent = new Intent(this, OtherActivity.class); startActivity(newIntent); //OtherActivity will become visible Implicitly (using new Intent(action_to_perform,data_to_perform_action_on);): Intent newIntent = new Intent(Intent.ACTION_DIAL, Uri.parse(“tel:12345”)); startActivity(newIntent);
Slide 21 - 21 Binding applications and their components (cont.) Intents Broadcast Events Broadcast messages between components (sendBroadcast(newIntent) – where newIntent is the intent you want to broadcast) Listen for broadcasts using Broadcast Receivers Register a Broadcast Receiver in your application manifest: More info: http://code.google.com/android/reference/android/content/Intent.html
Slide 22 - 22 Binding applications and their components (cont.) Adapters Bind data to user interface views Responsible for creating a view for each item in the data set and providing access to the data Example of native adapter: ArrayAdapter: binds Adapter views to an array of objects. ArrayList myStringArray = new ArrayList(); ArrayAdapter myArrayAdapter = new ArrayAdapter(getApplicationContext(), android.R.layout.simple_list_item_1, myStringArray); myListView.setAdapter(myArrayAdapter);
Slide 23 - 23 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 24 - 24 Data Storage Different techniques for saving data: Shared Preferences: lightweight mechanism to store a known set of key-value pairs Useful for saving user preferences, application settings, and user interface state SharedPreferences mySharedPreferences = getSharedPreferences(“myPreferences”, Activity.MODE_PRIVATE); SharedPreferences.Editor editor = mySharedPreferences.edit(); editor.putString(“textValue”, “Empty”); editor.commit(); … SharedPreferences mySharedPreferences = getSharedPreferences(“myPreferences”, Activity.MODE_PRIVATE); String stringPreference = mySharedPreferences.getString(“textValue”,“”);
Slide 25 - 25 Data Storage (cont.) Different techniques for saving data: SQLite Databases: relational database library for storing and managing complex data Results from database queries are stored in Cursors Look at SQLiteOpenHelper and Cursor class More Info: http://www.sqlite.org/ Files: you can create, write, and read files from the local storage or external media (SD Cards) Look at FileOutputStream, FileInputStream, and Resources classes.
Slide 26 - 26 Data Storage (cont.) Content Providers Mechanism for sharing data between applications by abstracting the underlying data source Access is handled through a URI model Native Android Content Providers Browser Contacts Get a Cursor for every person in your contact database: Cursor contactCursor = getContentResolver().query(People.CONTENT_URI, null, null, null); MediaStore ...
Slide 27 - 27 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 28 - 28 Background Services Services run in the background Primarily used for: Updating Content Providers Firing Intents Triggering Notifications Any operation that does not necessitate user interaction (i.e. networking, MP3 playback) For intensive and/or blocking operations, the service should be run in its own thread
Slide 29 - 29 Background Services (cont.) Creating and Controlling Services Create a Service: Extend the Service class; override specific methods (such as onCreate, onStart, onBind, etc). Start and stop a Service: Use the startService method from inside your current Activity class Use the stopService method from inside your current Activity class If the phone becomes inactive while you have services running, those services will not work properly (freeze) Stop your phone from going into sleep mode Use WakeLocks (with care) (http://code.google.com/android/reference/android/os/PowerManager.html)
Slide 30 - 30 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 31 - 31 Location-Based Services Selecting a Location Provider To determine your current location, Android can use several technologies (or Location Providers) GPS Provider – determines location using satellites Network Provider – determines location using cell towers and Wi-Fi access points Each provider has a set of criteria (power consumption, cost, response time, accuracy, etc.) under which it may be used
Slide 32 - 32 Location-Based Services (cont.) Finding you location LocationManager locationManager = (LocationManager)getSystemService(Context.LOCATION_SERVICE); Location location = locationManager.getLastKnownLocation(LocationManager.GPS_PROVIDER);
Slide 33 - 33 Location-Based Services (cont.) Geocoding Forward Geocoding: finds latitude and longitude of an address Use method getFromLocationName from the Geocoder class Reverse Geocoding: finds the street address for a given latitude and longitude Use method getFromLocation from the Geocoder class
Slide 34 - 34 Location-Based Services (cont.) Map-Based Activities Classes that support Android maps: MapView: a view which displays a map. Used within a MapActivity MapActivity: manages all that is required for displaying a map Overlay: used for annotating maps (i.e. drawing text on the map) MapController: used for panning and zooming MyLocationOverlay: used to display the current position and orientation of the device
Slide 35 - 35 Location-Based Services (cont.) Using the default MapView centered at the current user position:
Slide 36 - 36 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 37 - 37 Accessing Android’s Sensors The SensorManager is used to manage the sensor hardware available on an Android device: SensorManager sensorManager = (SensorManager)getSystemService(Context.SENSOR_SERVICE); Monitoring changes in sensor values: SensorListener sensorListener = new SensorListener() { public void onSensorChanged(int sensor, float[] values) { … } } The values depend on the type of sensor (i.e. accelerometer, light, magnetic field, temperature, proximity)
Slide 38 - 38 Outline Introduction Application Components and Lifecycle User Interfaces Binding applications and their components Data Storage Background Services Location-Based Services Accessing Android’s Sensors References
Slide 39 - 39 References Main Website: http://code.google.com/android/ Recommended Reading: Reto Meier, “Professional Android Application Development”, Wrox Programmer to Programmer Mark, L. Murphy, “The Busy Coder’s Guide to Android Development”, CommonsWare Android Discussion Groups: http://code.google.com/android/groups.html Publish Applications: Android Market, AndAppStore, Handango, SlideME.