Designing a GUI

      Hello and welcome to the next ‘chapter’ in my Quest to become a code monkey. When we last left our hero he was slightly disenfranchised with his grand journey. He was not learning much and needed to find something       new.
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I mentioned Hello, Android and that is what I have been focusing on. I think I’m falling into a nice rhythym with it. I’m not going quickly but what I do is read through a section (usually on coffee breaks at work) and then later go back and follow along while doing the actual coding. I think it’s working pretty good and is even making more sense. There are still parts where I stratch my head and wonder why that code was written and exactly what it means. But I think with more practice and use it will start to become more clear.
The GUI for a tutorial app with Title Text and Four Buttons

The Launch Page of the App Hello, Android is teaching me to build

So far I’ve been learning about UI set up. With that I have set up a launch page UI including title text and four buttons as seen above. I feel pretty solid about that code and how it works. When we start linking the buttons to actions I get a little bit lost. onClickListener is what checks to see if the button is hit or not, but I need to go back and at the surrounding code to get a better handle on it. We also learnt about setting up the UI for different screen orientations so that everything looks nice regardless of whether the user is in landscape or portrait mode. This allowed us to set up our first table view so we get the nice columns in landscape mode. I also set up an About page which is triggered by hitting a button. This page is styled with a Theme so that it appears as a pop up with the original activity visible behind it. That was pretty cool.
The About Button triggers a Pop Up with Text describing the App

The About Page themed as a Pop Up box

Finally we started setting up the settings options. I’m pretty sure this is just magic. I didn’t really set much up and yet, there’s the page. I guess we haven’t set up the results for it yet. We don’t have music to turn on and off and we don’t have hints yet, so maybe when those features get implemented we’ll see how they link up.
A settings page with 2 check box options

The Settings Page

It’s been fun doing this coding and seeing the results on the emulator. I wish I had made coding more of a priority this week. It would have been great to have the basic game play coded so that while my mother is visiting this weekend she could check it out since she used to play a lot of sudoku. Oh well. Can’t win them all.
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