Astronomy Picture Of the Day on your Android

I spent the last week or so learning Android programming. I find it important, in the learning of a new programming tool, to write something with clear specifications. This forces you to work on the best solution instead of using easy to code work-arounds.

The specifications are:

  1. The application should allow the user to read the Astrophotography Picture Of the Day published by NASA at on it’s Android device
  2. The application needs to be compatible with Android 1.5 (SDK #3)
  3. The user should be able to access the APOD for any date since june 16th 1995
  4. The user should be able to directly access the APOD of the current day
  5. The user should be able to navigate to the previous and next APODs
  6. The user should be able to navigate to the previous and next APODs with fling gestures
  7. The user should be able to view the picture in full size by clicking the preview picture
  8. The user should be redirected to the APOD website when clicking on the full size picture

These were the initial requirements … I will add some more stuff in the upcoming days:

  1. Change the full size picture activity from a WebView to an ImageView. This will allow the implementation of the OnClickListener callback and the re-use of the image bitmap in memory.
  2. Caching of the APODs on the SD card. This will save bandwidth, an important issue when using mobile networks.
  3. Adding a splash screen while loading the first APOD. Since loading the images can take a while on mobile networks, a splash screen with a spinner would look more professional.

The actual version of the project is published on my Github at the following address: Feel free to fork, copying is not stealing!


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