Saturday, August 27, 2011

Milestone 1.3

I have started real work on Milestone 2. I have a working menu and with two options. The "Home Settings" option is non-functional, but the "Phone Settings" option launches the phone settings application.

Get Milestone 1.3 here:

Friday, August 26, 2011

More Sites!

Well I have had yet another person volunteer to help with development. Jakub Chrzanowski will be gettimg me most of the way to milestone 1.2 by adding a generic preference activity. I hope to have milestone 1.2 done by the end of this weekend, along with some major code cleanup.

All development will now officially be happening on github! See

If you are interested in helping with development please join the development forum:

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sorry for the Silence

I've started up work. Just a little about me. I am a High School technology/pre-engineering teacher. I have been on summer break until this week. Summer break gave me a lot of time to work, and let me get this project started. Beyond work, I am working on my Masters in IT. I will now be doing more of my work on weekends so development might be a bit slower. I've been very happy with the interest in this project and look forward where it will go.

Now that's out of the way...My goal this weekend is to build the preferences screen and start to build the favorites scroll-view.

I also now have two more people helping me. Dan Lundmark and Nisha Holloway will be helping out with the graphic design. Their first goal is build an icon for SlideHome, if you have any ideas please reply with them.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Yay for Open Source

I have had a great out-pouring of support for this project this weekend and actually have some help. GHOSTS3V3N has set up a project page at git hub ( and will start to help with development. Another person, Rafa Gisbert, has offered to help with a Spanish translation. Finally I might have somebody willing to help with UX and design elements, I will post more as I get more info. This is great news as I will be starting up at work (High School Teacher) this week which will eat into my late night development time.

 I hope to clean up Milestone 1 today, and start work on Milestone 2. I am giving up on trying to save the AppsList to storage for now, as I don't want to get hung up on a small detail early in the project. I also think I might see about building some UML diagrams to convey my greater plans for the project. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

Milestone 1.2

Apparently SlideHome is actually being used! This made my night, but it also pointed out a problem that I ad missed where if a phone had a very high resolution screen or low dpi, the app would not fill the screen. I tracked down the bug and made the change.

I have also started to change how the apps are loaded. The slow portion of the load is building the list of applications, not creating the grid of icons (as I had believed). I have saved the list of applications to the bundle but have found that the bundle does not persist after the app is fully closed. I  think I see about saving this list to a file instead. I want this to start quickly because I waste more time (4-6 seconds per boot, it feels long) booting the application then I'd like and this will only get worse as the application gets bigger.

I have also been thinking about my milestones. I think my next milestone will be the preference screen, rather then the custom view to hold favorite applications. I have a Spanish translator who has offered to do the translation work on SlideHome and I would love to get that work flow going. If you are interesting in translating SlideHome send me an email ( and I will let you know when I am ready. The preferences will be more useful to those using this as a simple launcher and will allow me to put in settings to see how they act without the need to re-compile.

I have also done even more house cleaning and I think I have removed all unused resources from the application now.

Anyway, try Milestone 1.2 here:

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Milestone 1.1

A slightly better version of Milestone 1.
I have added listeners for package intents. Thanks to Bradley Booms for giving me the link to the documentation. It did turn out that the sample home had this done so adding it was trivial, but I would have spent more time on it had I not known exactly what I was looking for.

 I have also cleaned up the view by removing the title, adding scroll-bars, and packing the grid from the top down. This last change makes it so that blank spaces show up on the last line rather then the first.

Next up is saving the application list to the bundle so that the app loads a bit faster, looks like it might take a bit as it is a ListArray of type ApplicationInfo, or objects that hold the application intents, titles and images. Anyway, I'll figure that out tomorrow.

Get the newest SlideHome here:

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Milestone 1 is done!

I now have a home replacement that can actually launch applications! It is a scrolling grid that contains all the applications on the phone. I have also removed more of the sample home code and resources! I think my next step before building my own custom view that will give us the nice favorites area is to see if I can cache the list of applications on the phone and be updated when new apps are installed rather then creating the list from scratch each time the home screen launches. This should speed up the application drawer.

Well one benchmark in a few days is not too bad and I have some ideas how to build the custom view that is needed.

Get SlideHome Milestone 1 here:

Well, It's Something...but basically it's nothing

I have finally tracked down my null-pointer,YAY! I have a running but completely useless home screen. It doesn't even show or launch apps yet, but that is the next goal. I do have a better understanding of the Sample Home code now and even analysed how it is called in the wild (i.e. my Droid). I think I will be trimming even more code away before I add anything of my own, but that's a good thing; right?

I have posted my working, but useless code here:

I know I have posted my binaries as well, but I am new to git and will fine tune what is posted as I go. I guess that's one more thing to learn...oy.

You can find my useless home screen here:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

How do we begin...

This is a blog to complement my attempt to create and open source replacement for the now dead SlideScreen for Android. SlideScreen was a home screen replacement for Android that focused on showing the user the most recent and important information from thier life without having to launch other applications. See for more information. You can get the final version of SlideScreen here:

I will be posting here as I work on SlideHome.

I am fairly new to Android so I have been hacking away at the Home sample from the Android example code. See for more info. So far I have got the first few lines ported with no errors...well no syntax errors, but I am now tracking down a null-pointer exception that occurs on load. This is honestly a big first project for Android, but I am picking it up as I go.

I do have a couple of milestones planned out, and they are as follows:
*Hello Launcher: A basic scrolling grid of applications.
*SlideHome Drawer: A screen that mimics the application drawer from SlideScreen.
*Twitter Home: A screen that minics the main screen from SlideScreen but with Twitter Alone
*Twitter/FaceBook Home Slider: A screen that mimics SlideScreens Slider along With Twitter and Facebook
*The Whole Hog: Start implementing Calendar, Reader, Phone, Music, etc.

Well I appreciate any Feedback and Help on this project!