Implementing Crosswalk’s Chromium webview plugin in an Android app


Why consider using Crosswalk? Android devices have different implementations of the webview, in which our PhoneGap and Cordova apps appear. Vendors have made their own tweaks of the webview, causing our code to render inconsistently. So our CSS and scripts will play differently across devices or not at all.

For instance, the HTML5 <video> tag won’t work across all Android browsers:

<video id="video_1" 
 controls preload="auto" width="320" height="240">
 <source src="video/myvideo-h264.mp4" type="video/mp4">
I'm sorry; your device browser doesn't support HTML5 video in MP4 with H.264.
</video>

But it will work in the Chromium webview provided by Crosswalk. By adding the Chromium webview to our app, we will have a unified Android playing field for our app. Continue reading

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Displaying a prepopulated database with AngularJS


I am trying out different ways to have a prepopulated database in an app. This time I’m experimenting with AngularJS. The following article show how to display an array of data AngularJS style, filtering the output with two buttons. (This article is not using “ng-cordova.”) If you follow the other articles on this site, you can compare the different approaches for a “simple,” in-app, prepopulated DB. Continue reading

Prepopulated Database with TaffyDB for iOS and Android with Cordova


I thought I would look for an alternate to SQLite to display a prepopulated database. Research (and successfully creating a working version) led me to TaffyDB. Here is a working project to create your own prepopulated DB. TaffyDB can do so much more if you are familiar with JavaScript (I’m not, so it was difficult trying to figure this much out!).

Resources:
http://www.taffydb.com/
http://www.slideshare.net/typicaljoe/better-data-management-using-taffydb-1357773  Continue reading

Adding an Android APK Expansion File to a Cordova Project


Google Play apps are limited to 50MB, but may go larger with “expansion files” of up to 2GB in size. The “main” expansion file is the primary expansion file that contains additional resources required by your application. The “patch” expansion file is optional and intended for small updates to the main expansion file. This article covers how to create and add an expansion file to our Android app using a plugin. Then gives the “secret” way to upload the APK and expansion file to Google Play. Continue reading

Adding ProGuard to Your Android Cordova Project


“The ProGuard tool shrinks, optimizes, and obfuscates your code by removing unused code and renaming classes, fields, and methods with semantically obscure names. The result is a smaller sized .apk file that is more difficult to reverse engineer” (from http://developer.android.com/tools/help/proguard.html). You’ll want to use this tool if your app has sensitive security features you want to protect. To my knowledge, it does not obfuscate your HTML.

These steps assume you’ve already built your Android Cordova project and just about finished it, and are ready to build a release version of the app. Continue reading

Setting Up Your Development Environment for Cordova Android projects


Updated 8/2/2015 to include Windows 7 setup. Adobe PhoneGap/Apache Cordova CLI quickly sets up your project files for the mobile environment. However, it requires a hefty setup of your development environment before you can begin making Android apps. If you are a working developer, all these tools are par for the course and you’ll have them already installed. If you are trying out Cordova/PhoneGap for the first time, and you are new to the programming world – welcome! – you need to install all the “dependencies” that Cordova/PhoneGap assumes are already resident on your system. Follow all these steps to make your Cordova/PhoneGap work go smoothly. Of course, these steps need to be done just once. Continue reading

Using Android Studio Beta with Cordova PhoneGap


Article updated here 11/2016: https://iphonedevlog.wordpress.com/2016/11/21/using-android-studio-with-cordova-projects/

I installed Android Studio Beta to see how it currently stacks up against Eclipse. It’s apparent that Android Development Tools for Eclipse is going the way of the dodo and will no longer be updated as vigorously. It’s my impression that Android Studio Beta (AS) is Google’s new SDK to replace Eclipse. We’ll need to learn it sooner or later, so why not now? Here are my notes as I set up the environment and discover the path to creating an apk. These steps track the install and setup of Android Studio down to outputting a signed apk for Google Play upload.  Continue reading