Ryan Harter

What to Expect When Being Featured on Google Play

It’s been a few weeks since my last post, in large part because of all of the work I’ve been doing for Hashnote. For those who don’t know, in the beginning of August Hashnote was featured on Google Play in the Play Picks section. Here’s how it went. Before In January of 2012, I decided to leave my 9 to 5 and start my own business as a freelance Android developer....

Almost Git-Flow

I recently shared how I use Git to automatically track my versions. There’s quite a bit more to my git workflow than just tagging versions, though, so I’d like to dive into my git usage just a little more. One of my clients introduced me to a very popular, and useful, git branching strategy commonly called Git-Flow based on Vincent Driessen’s branching model. I highly recommend reading his article, it’s quite good and describes a very useful branching model....

Automatic Versioning with Git and Gradle

One of the challenges of programming projects is versioning. I’ve always tried to find a simple way to bump version and build number in a meaningful way that uniquely identifies a build. Back in the Subversion days this was easy, since Subversion is a centralized version control system that assigns a unique, incrementing revision number to each commit. Free build numbers! Then all you have to do is assign a marketing version number (something like 1....

Impress Your Users

App ratings are an extremely factor in any app. No matter what app store you are on, people value the opinions of other users. Google has always said that high Play Store ratings are an important factor in getting your app featured. I won’t pretend that I know a magic bullet to get endless 5 start reviews, but here are a few things I’ve learned along the way....

Hashnote Version Distribution

This morning, like many others, I decided to take a look at the Android version distribution of Hashnote and was pleasently surprized with what I found. A few months ago I decided to take Hashnote ICS+ only after realizing that only a small portion of my install base was on pre-ICS devices. I still think that was a good choice as it’s made development much easier and allowed me to do more in the limited free time I have to work on Hashnote....

Migrating Android Projects to Gradle

I’ve been using ant to build my Android projects for as long as I can remember. There are many reasons for this, like build consistency and workstation agnosticism, but you can read this article if you want to check that out. Ant is a good tool, but never offered the flexibility that I would have liked in a project. That’s where Gradle steps in. After seeing all of the power of the new Gradle build system, I knew I had to convert Hashnote to Gradle....

Going ICS Only

Back in April I had the pleasure of seeing a talk by Jay Ohms of TwentyFive Squares at GDG Schaumburg. It was a great discussion about their app, Press, an excellent RSS reader for Android. The discussion wasn’t a technical one, but one of the things that interested me was their decision to go Ice Cream Sandwich and up for Press. This was the first app that I had heard of, and the only major, popular app that I know of, that has made this decision....

Introducing Gradle

Who Needs IDEs? At Google I/O this year, Google introduced it’s new IDE, Android Studio. Android Studio is based on IntelliJ IDEA, a great IDE that many of my Android friends use. I wasn’t particularly excited by this announcement because, for the last several years, I’ve given up IDEs. My development environment of choice has been Sublime Text 2 and ant. Sure, IDEs can be extremely useful, especially in Java, where boiler plate code is the name of the game....

Absorbing Google I/O

Last week hosted the latest iteration of Google’s annual developer conference, Google I/O. Google I/O is where developers and enthusiasts go to get all of the latest news about Google’s latest offerings, from Android to Chrome to their Cloud backend. For the last two years, I was one of those developers that got to spend a few days a year with many other extremely brilliant people and learn a ton about new technologies....

One Question: Why?

In January of 2013, I finally decided to make the leap and start my own consulting business. It’s only been 3 months since then, but I’ve already learned quite a lot from the experience. After reading a recent article on Inc.com I couldn’t help but feel a little offended and reflective on my own experience in the workforce. One thing that I’ve come to realize is how much more productive I feel now that I’m working for myself....