Comicster for Android (project update)

Jim Welch's Avatar

Jim Welch

05 Jul, 2011 12:12 AM

This is just a thread to keep those up to date on the Android project.

There's 2 parts to the project. The Comicster Plug-In and the Android app.

Comicster Plug-In

  • TODO - add export options to include thumbnails (will work on after data rendering is completed)

Android App

  • TODO - build tab for trades
  • TODO - add keyword/text filter/search
  • TODO - build option to browse/find cmx db files
  • TODO - add intent/file association to open comicster when clicking on cmxa db file

Using Comicster v4, creating the plug-in was much faster than the previous version. It only took me a few hours to get a 75% complete Plug-In (good enough to generate db) and most of that time I was trying to resolve SQLite dependency problems. The Plug-In now exports everything but trades and folders. I'm unsure if I'm going to export folders since I can't find a good way of coding a treeview/folderview on android right now and I'd rather focus on everything else first.

On Android, I started over from scratch and found that it was a lot faster coding this time around. In a few hours, I was able to get about 30% of the app done. I think I have a better feel for Android apps, now that I've used my phone for a while. The last time I started on the project, I had just gotten my phone and hadn't seen/used very many apps. I have a few better ideas now that I'm going to implement. I think the overall coding time will be much faster now than before. I'm going to try to get a large chuck of it coded over the next few days, so I can stew over the final UI pieces until I found a good way to render/color/display everything.

July 5 Update
- The basic framework is done. I just need to dress up the UI and make some advanced export and viewing options. I don't have thumbnails in this version, but hopefully the next version. Will look into sync integration.

  1. Support Staff 1 Posted by Jim Welch on 07 Jul, 2011 02:27 AM

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    July 6, Update

    I added a 'settings' page that allows users to toggle the display of some tabs: characters, creators, groups, storylines, trades. If a user wants to hide these tabs, then they will toggle the display in the app settings. Publisher and Title tabs can't be hidden. These preferences are saved as part of app settings, so it'll be there when you load the app next time, too.

    I also added an option to Show All Issues, Show Owned Issues, or Show Wanted Issues to the settings page. You can switch your preference and it will refresh the display without reloading the database. This preference is saved as part of app settings, so it'll be there when you load the app next time, too.

    I was able to integrate DropBox into the Comicster Plugin. So now there's 2 export options: local disk and DropBox. The DropBox cloud service provides free file hosting once you've registered there and authorized the PlugIn/Android app. (Same authorization process as with Halfwit & Twitter, etc.) The Plugin uses OAuth, so there's no storing or passing of username or passwords by the Plugin.

    I'd say the Comicster Plugin app is mostly done. It has everything I wanted to get done for the Plug-In at least for now. Thumbnails can wait until a future release.

    Only remaining items are: (Android app)

    • Build a tab for Trades
    • Build a page for Trade details
    • Build the DropBox download feature (uploaded from plugin)
    • Build a db file selector (to list all CMXA DBs on device)
    • Build a way of clicking on cmxa files in Internet browser to copy the cmxa file to the app's db folder and opening the file in the app (file associations)
  2. Support Staff 2 Posted by Jim Welch on 21 Jul, 2011 02:54 PM

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    Another quick update...

    I've mostly been working on tasks related to getting files onto the phone, such as copying to sdcard and downloading from internet. I spent way too much time trying to get Dropbox to work on the Android. The API for desktop was quick and easy, but I'm having problems with it on the phone. I'm going to try that again after I get the other two methods (copying to sdcard and download from internet) full working and tested.

  3. 3 Posted by lucien17 on 28 Nov, 2011 04:09 AM

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    Any closer to an android release? I mostly just want to be able to see what comics I have when I'm out and that would be great if my phone could tell me that.

  4. Support Staff 4 Posted by Jim Welch on 28 Nov, 2011 04:27 AM

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    I've been a bit busy and moved about 3000 miles away from my last home, so the project got sideline for a bit. I'm hoping to get back into working on it in a little bit, but I can't really set a definitive date on it.

  5. 5 Posted by lucien17 on 28 Nov, 2011 04:54 AM

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    That's totally understandable. Hope you get all settled in and back to normal. I'll be happy to hear more about the project when you have more time, but absolutly no rush.

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