Weathrman 3.5.1: The Best Intentions

I’ve taken some time to do some internal cleanup; I’ve learned a great deal about Android’s programming model from building this and other projects, and it’s time to go back and re-apply some of that knowledge.

As such, I’ve restructured the bulk of execution in IntentService implementations, which has simplified a lot of the code; notification handling and update processing are now handled by dedicated services, rather than burying the whole processing chain in an AsyncTask.

We’ve lost a few things I’d like to have kept along the way, on the inside, but the code is cleaner and faster for it.

I’ve also done something I thought I’d never see myself do:  I’ve de-guiced the app.

Done well, I’m sure Guice is a good fit; but it’s a very small app, and moving to IntentService instances has basically meant that I’ve now got three independent application-parts that communicate by sending intents to one another.  What’s left isn’t worth Guicing.

What’s funny, and somewhat unfortunate, is that by coming to this with my server hat on, I missed the fact that Android applications don’t need to be built as the monolith binaries that Guice is designed to help break apart, and some of the tools at your disposal on android are designed to ensure that not only do you not need to allocate those objects, you can avoid most of the processing time you would have spent even thinking about those elements of the object graph - binding processing just isn’t free, and on mobile devices you might not see the cost, but you can feel it, almost imperceptibly.

So 3.5.1 is out; it’s got fixes for the cache growth problems, reaffirms my commitment to 2.1-based devices, and provides a much needed speed boost in both startup performance and, due to some more tweaking on my part, on the speed of image retrieval in many cases.

I’ve also tweaked the negative keywords associated with daytime searches on the server side; hopefully you’ll see improved search quality.

And for a short time, it’s free - I’m looking to get an idea of how active users correspond with server load, and giving away a free app is a cheap way of load testing.  :)