Android Architecture Components – Looking at Room and LiveData – Part 1

This week at Google I/O 2017, there were a lot of new announcements for the Android Platform. One of the announcements was the new architecture guidelines for Android! This is a welcome addition to the Android platform.

Previously the Android team refrained from giving advice as to how you should structure your Android applications. For the most part this meant that anyone learning Android for the first time would just end up placing all their code into the Activity files and occasionally moving stuff into an AsyncTask if the app crashed with a NetworkOnMainThreadException. Only after trying to add unit tests and instrumentation tests would you really understand that your code you have just spent so long developing was not easy to read, make changes to or to write tests for. Continue reading Android Architecture Components – Looking at Room and LiveData – Part 1

Speaking at the App Builders Conference in Switzerland – 2017

Speaking at App Builders Switzerland this past week on Android Things was an invaluable experience, I had such a fantastic time. Besides the conference, I got to do a bit of sightseeing. I was able to take a day to explore Zermatt and experience a lot of snow! Unfortunately the Matterhorn wasn’t visible but this didn’t really bother me as I had enough fun exploring the snow topped mountains anyway.

Continue reading Speaking at the App Builders Conference in Switzerland – 2017

Google Launchpad Start – Johannesburg – A summary

This past week I had the pleasure of being involved with the Google Launchpad Start located in Johannesburg, South Africa. The week was educational, inspirational and a lot of fun!

The Google Launchpad Start program is a 5-day in-person mentoring bootcamp designed to help early stage startups tackle critical growth challenges. Continue reading Google Launchpad Start – Johannesburg – A summary

Electricity Monitoring App – Send Push Notifications using Firebase Cloud Functions

This week Firebase launched a new and VERY exciting feature called Firebase Cloud Functions. It makes Firebase even more powerful than before, by allowing you to trigger functions when certain events happen. Events can be any of the following things:

  • Data changes on Firebase Realtime database nodes.
  • Authentication Changes
  • Analytics Changes
  • Cloud Storage Changes
  • and a few more…

Cloud Functions is a hosted, private, and scalable Node.js environment where you can run JavaScript code.

Continue reading Electricity Monitoring App – Send Push Notifications using Firebase Cloud Functions

Android Things – Electricity Monitoring App

For those who may not know, I live in beautiful sunny South Africa (see my tweets for lots of awesome pictures). A few years ago we battled with a lack of electricity. While “load-shedding” is not so common these days, we have numerous unplanned outages. We even have a few of apps that give out schedules when the electricity is scheduled to go off in your area (see here and here). Continue reading Android Things – Electricity Monitoring App