top | android | coffee | dealing_with_companies | dev_blog | experiments | food | fun | io15 | politics | products | random | security | startups | tech_events | thoughts | wearables |

02 Dec 2015, 13:40

Notes on the Android Support Library

Share

On November 23 & 24, I attended the first ever Android Dev Summit. The following are notes that I took during talks. I have included the video of the talk as well. Again, these are my notes from the talk, not my original content.

Chiu-Ki Chan (Android GDE) took really great notes during the session as well, here’s what she had:

  • What?
  • Why?
  • Gotchas?
  • How?
  • Bugs?

What?

Lots of stuff. Started out simple, but it’s grown. There are multiple support libs, providing different utilities. They’re a bridge for getting newer functionality on older API level devices.

The core v4/13:

Animation

ViewCompat.animate()

Fragments

FragmentActivity.getSupportFragmentManager()

Features

<android.supportv4.ViewPager> // or something

Infrastructure

  • RecyclerView
  • appcompat - large chunks of the UI toolkit

Higher Level:

  • mediarouter - chromecast
  • design
  • preferences
  • leanback - TV

Why?

Unbundled releases:

  • Not tied to platform releases
  • Bug fixes
  • New features

RecyclerView

  • Component providing data-set windowing
  • Improves upon an existing framework (?)
  • Backports to v7

Provides:

  • Animation
  • Pluggable
  • Enforcing

AppCompat

  • UI compatibility layer for v7+
  • Backport framework features, but no more
  • Goal: stay up to date with framework

Provides:

  • Themes
  • Toolbar
  • Tinting

Design

  • UI feature lib
  • Provides features not in the framework
  • Goal: implement high-level UI components

Provides:

  • FloatingActionButton - FAB
  • NavigationView - NV
  • Snackbar (like Toast with an action)
  • TabLayout - TL

Percent

  • UI feature lib
  • Provides percent based layouts
  • FrameLayout and RelativeLayout

Allows you to define layout elements as percentages of the parent.

Gotchas

Library major version number is the minimum compile sdk version.

E.g. lib v23.1.0 needs compileSdkVersion 23.

Dex limit, all of the compat libs add up to a third of the dex size. Using proguard: minifyEnabled true, you can cut it down to something more manageable. With new AS tools, no need to re-run proguard on every iteration.

How?

Using a variable can help to keep all the support dependencies at the same, correct, version in the build.gradle file.

ext {
    supportLibVersion = "23.1.1"
}

dependencies {
    compile "com.android.support:appcompat-v7:${supportLibVersion}"
    compile "com.android.support:design-v7:${supportLibVersion}"
}

Bugs

http://b.android.com

comments powered by Disqus