Thursday, January 6, 2011

Chuck Norris Facts Widget for Android

Chuck Norris Facts WidgetA few weeks ago, I decided I'd like to try my hand at writing an Android application. One of my favorite features of Android over iOS (other than the fact that I think Apple lacks any form of ethics or sense of social responsibility) is that Android allows you to add widgets to your home screens. Sure, you can still have the half dozen views full of rows of boring icons, but the widgets give you a great deal of functionality without ever having to launch an app.

I decided a good first shot at Android development would be to write a Chuck Norris Fact of the Day widget my family and friends could stick on their home screens and enjoy a little daily pick-me-up. I knew that adding customizability would let me work with preferences and the nature of a daily fact would give me some Android data management experience.

I released the Chuck Norris Fact Widget on the Android Market and several of my family and friends downloaded it the first day. Over the next few weeks, about 1,500 of their family and friends downloaded it, so I've been working to improve it ever since.

If you're on your Android device now, you can download the free version called, Chuck Norris Facts Free or for just a buck, you can get the paid version called, Chuck Norris Facts with Widget. The icon should look familiar from above and the publisher name is, of course, D. Patrick Caldwell.

I hope you check it out and I hope you enjoy a little bit of my sense of humor.

Patrick Caldwell

For the programmers who read my blog, I'll be posting some technical information I learned while developing this application. Specifically, how I managed to change the background image of my widget with remote views.

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