Android development & Sketchware

My Previous Experience

I’ve dabbled in programming on and off for years. I know enough so that I can read and interpret just about any programming language, but I am by no means fluent in any. With that said, it’s never stopped me from scouring the interwebs for hours, figuring out how to piece together bits of code to make a fully functioning(albeit somewhat simple) app. Android Studio is like a distant relative whom I see once every few years; What I mean is that each time I open it, it’s slightly changed, and unfamiliar again. I still remember a few bits and pieces, but sadly can’t pick it back up like riding a bike. 

Searching the Android App Store

Every week or so i’ll open the Google App store and just search around to see what new apps could be useful to me. I wouldn’t call myself a “Power User”, but I like unique apps that offer something different. I already waste to much time on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook(which I removed for this reason but still find myself navigating to it through the browsesr), so I try and find constructive apps for education or productivity. 

A distant relative or a new find?

Last week I stumbled across an app called Sketchware. I’m not sure what made me click on the unsuspecting icon, but whatever did, I am grateful for. I’ve worked with other Logic based languages in the past(Crestron SimplWindows) and found them a bit peculiar, but normally well thought out and capable(if not lacking at times). 

Building my first app

When I first opened up Sketchware and started a new project, I was introduced by something vaguely familiar. The layouts and Widget options were straight out of Android Studio and Eclipse. Moving into the logic after adding a button and a new page, It because even more familiar.  The first thing I did was create a basic page flip on a button press; onClick -> Intent -> setScreen -> StartActivity BOOM done. page flip is functioning with a simple drag and drop logic loosely based off of the java instructions I had used in the past. 

Final Thoughts​

I’m still playing and looking around, but so far I am very impressed with the capabilities of this app. We’ll see how well it integrates with Google Adsense, or when I try and pull a DB query from one of my servers. 
For now, I am impressed and happy with the feature set, but my full opinion is TBD.

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