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Author Topic: Question re/ future software project  (Read 871 times)

brotherS

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Question re/ future software project
« on: January 04, 2017, 10:12:58 AM »
Hello and a happy new year!

For a future software project around data entry and basic file edits, I'm pondering what would be a good solution for these requirements:

- should work for Windows+Apple, maybe even for Android
  (So my first thought was a browser-based solution might work...)

- users should be able to use it offline [syncing data when being online again later]
  (...but then I read that Chrome can only handle a relatively small cache for web apps, not a few 100 MB)

I won't be coding this myself, at the moment I only need some general ideas of how to set something like this up. How would you approach something like this?

Ath

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2017, 12:48:18 PM »
Have a look at Xamarin (Microsoft-owned these days). It's multi-platform-mobile mostly plus Windows Universal apps (but not mac, afaics) with up to 95% shared code, and does support sqlite3 databases and internet connection for data-syncing (ofcourse). Programming is done in C#.
Using it for my NANY 2017 entry 8)
« Last Edit: January 04, 2017, 01:00:40 PM by Ath »

wraith808

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2017, 01:03:07 PM »
Have a look at Xamarin (Microsoft-owned these days). It's multi-platform-mobile mostly plus Windows Universal apps (but not mac, afaics) with up to 95% shared code, and does support sqlite3 databases and internet connection for data-syncing (ofcourse). Programming is done in C#.
Using it for my NANY 2017 entry 8)
How was that?  Using Xamarin for your entry?

brotherS

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2017, 01:28:53 PM »
Thanks Ath, that looks promising!

On https://www.xamarin.com/platform they say "With C# and Visual Studio, you can share the same code on iOS, Android, Windows, Mac and more."

Ath

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2017, 01:52:31 PM »
I probably stopped reading after iOs, Android, Windows and looked only for the download button ;D ;D ;D

brotherS

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2017, 02:03:18 PM »
 :D

wraith808

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2017, 05:06:38 PM »
I probably stopped reading after iOs, Android, Windows and looked only for the download button ;D ;D ;D

But how was using it?  I'd tried before, and it was not very intuitive getting the sample project to Android, so I abandoned it.  I was wondering about your experiences.

Ath

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2017, 07:04:46 AM »
Well, the development is just as much a 'pain' as is any xaml project (I'm using Xamarin Forms with xaml, as that is the advised way to go for mobile dev. and working in VS2015 sp3, not Xamarin studio, on Windows 10), but VS doesn't have any Xamarin specific auto-complete support (yet) or form designer/viewer, so that takes some searching for the correct keywords to use. But all in all it's been a rather pleasant experience, more so if you're a Visual Studio fan/addict ;D (I'm more of an Eclipse/Java fan :tellme:, but do 'speak' C#-ish too).

There's a 'pcl' (portable code library) that holds all shared code including all forms/screens, only platform-specific code is in a partial class/implementation for that platform, you just run the platform project as default and the dependent pcl is built accordingly.

Deploying during debug is best done on an emulator, and works like a charm using the Google emulator (not using the VS emulator as my hyper-v settings are incompatible, they are explicitly set to allow VirtualBox to run smoothly).
Deploying to a device can easily be done in 3 ways:
  • export to an apk that you put on the device and install manually (or upload using your Developer Dashboard to the Play Store and install from there)
  • deploy directly into the Play Store and install from there (didn't try that yet)
  • run as a debug or release build from VS on a device connected to yiur PC
Building and testing the iOs release requires, by Apple licensing demands, an Apple Mac OS computer running the latest XCode and Xamarin studio installed. (my doughter owns a MacBook Pro I can use :D) The build proces is completely controlled from VS, except for the user-interaction with the emulated iPhone, releasing to the Apple App Store I didn't try yet, haven't been working on the iOs implementation yet.

I guess a lot has improved during 2016, as the whole operation worked smoothly after I found the descriptions for these procedures ;)

Executing the (free) lessons from the Xamarin University was a great help, getting me up to speed with xaml (again), sqlite3 and the multi-platform shenanigans. As said, all in all it was a good experience, and I intend to do more multi-platform mobile apps in this way.

wraith808

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Re: Question re/ future software project
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2017, 12:01:59 PM »
Well, the development is just as much a 'pain' as is any xaml project (I'm using Xamarin Forms with xaml, as that is the advised way to go for mobile dev. and working in VS2015 sp3, not Xamarin studio, on Windows 10), but VS doesn't have any Xamarin specific auto-complete support (yet) or form designer/viewer, so that takes some searching for the correct keywords to use. But all in all it's been a rather pleasant experience, more so if you're a Visual Studio fan/addict ;D (I'm more of an Eclipse/Java fan :tellme:, but do 'speak' C#-ish too).


I guess I'm glad that I don't use the designer :)  I'll have to try it (well, currently I'm in training for docker and EC2, so it will have to wait until that's done), but thanks for the feedback!