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Launch a timed service - Strategies

December 17, 2014Category: Software
An app I am writing at the moment needs to have a periodic timer, i.e. a way to run a bit of code at regular intervals. After digging through different sources, I've found two recommended patterns to code such behaviour: Using a periodic alarm: Android has the concept of periodic alarms (think an…

Split a Gradle Build File

November 30, 2014Category: Software
TL;DR: If you can, use ext {} with constants (hash). You can do call pointer things too! In the past days I've been trying to add some functionality to my Gradle build file so the version would be determined from the git tag. I've found this excellent entry showing how to get the actual string. My…

Android Dimensions - Pixels, DIPs...

October 16, 2014Category: Software
Building a mobile application is generally fun. New technologies, things to think about like memory constraints and threads... However, one thing that bugs me is a clear indication on how to build pixel perfect apps. IOS has a limited number of resolutions, plus their strategy is "normal size" or…

Android: Make Your Notification even Sticky-er

October 16, 2014Category: Software
In my previous post , I've expanded things to make a notification sticky. This worked in my tests until yesterday, when I've found a new case where my notification would go away: Build an sticky notification as per the two previous posts Activate the notification - this will trigger the activity…

Android: Make Your Notification Sticky

October 14, 2014Category: Software
Following my quest from the previous article , I realised that my app would not be in the foreground, like an email, browser or a game might be, but it would work without any GUI, using something like a cron job. This is all nice and lovely, but I'm not fond of applications doing stuff behind my…

Android: Notifications with Custom Layout

October 14, 2014Category: Software
In the previous entries, I have managed to display a notification and make it sticky . Now, since the app I'm developing is supposed to be visible mainly through this notification, I wanted to see if I can customise the actual content. Yes, I know there are options by default, like: Small and…

Android: Display a Notification

October 13, 2014Category: Software
One of the applications I'm thinking about I want it designed like the notification-based applications you see out there (Light Flow from reactle comes to mind). To be able to do this, I first need the app to display a notification on the device as a first step. The code to trigger a notification…

C Optimisation - 2005 style

October 10, 2014Category: Software
TL;DR : This post is about an experience I had in 2004 and it’s part of my consolidating technical posts I wrote in time. It may or may not be relevant to today’s technologies. I was trying to optimize a bit of code and found out that 2 if() statements are quicker than a case with true/false. and an…

D-BUS: DBUS and Mad scientists... - 2004 Style

October 9, 2014Category: Software
TL;DR : This post is about an experience I had in 2004 and it’s part of my consolidating technical posts I wrote in time. It may or may not be relevant to today’s technologies. For the last while I was poking around with the glorious D-BUS ... As it's always the case with new cutting edge…

Qt: Embedding Multiple Widgets in a Menu Item - 2004 style

October 8, 2014Category: Software
TL;DR : This post is about an experience I had in 2004 and it's part of my consolidating technical posts I wrote in time. It may or may not be relevant to today's technologies. One night in October 2004 ( WOW! it's almost 10 years!! ) I decided that it should be possible to group a bunch of widgets…
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