Archive for August, 2010

LauncherPro v0.7.6.0 Out in the Wild!

A new version of LauncherPro (v0.7.6.0) is now available in the Android Market.

Before I get to the changes, a little warning. I’m going to Uruguay tomorrow until Tuesday, so if there are any bugs in this version, I won’t be able to fix them until Tuesday. Update at your own risk :-)

Ok, so here’s what’s new:

For all users:

  • For Droid X/Droid 2 users: Added support for SMS notifications on the dock when using custom icons.
  • New: LauncherPro Shortcuts!. This deserves a rather lengthy explanation.
     
    LauncherPro Shortcuts are a new way of creating, adding, and sharing custom shortcuts for LauncherPro. Shortcuts are created and shared as LPS files.
     
    LPS files are self-contained shortcut files that have all the info needed to make a shortcut, including the label, icon, and Android intent (more on intents in a bit). They are written in a new format that I created for this purpose, which is based in XML. Don’t worry, I created a web-based tool for creating these files so it’s as easy as filling out a form and downloading the resulting .lps file.
     
    A shortcut always needs an Android intent to be “executed” when the shortcut is clicked. Intents are the standard way of launching activities/apps and sending information and commands to apps in Android. If you want to create your own LauncherPro Shortcuts, please read this page for a detailed explanation of how intents work and how to make your own.
     
    LPS files need to be stored in your SD card, either in the root of the card, or inside the folders “download”, “downloads” or “lpshortcuts”. To add an LP Shortcut to a homescreen, long-press on a blank spot, choose “Shortcuts” and then “LauncherPro Shortcuts”. If you have any LPS files in the previously mentioned folders in your SD card, they should show up on the list. You can click on “Create New” to go to the web-based LauncherPro Shortcut Creator tool. You can also access the LauncherPro Shortcut Creator tool from your computer, and then put the generated LPS file in your SD card.
     
    Here’s a topic in our LauncherPro forum where you can share and download LauncherPro Shortcut files.
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  • New option: Display memory usage. This is only meant for testing/debugging/troubleshooting purposes. When enabled, LauncherPro will display its current heap memory usage (in kilobytes) on the screen. Android has a heap memory limit per app of 24mb for high-resolution devices (Droid, N1, etc) and 16mb for medium-resolution devices (Hero, G1, Legend, etc). If you’re having memory-related force closes, this feature might help you understand why, and tweak or remove stuff from your homescreens until you achieve a safer memory usage. You can enable this under Preferences > Advanced Settings (it’s at the very bottom). Note: this feature is quite CPU intensive, so scrolling through homescreens will probably be less smooth when this is enabled.

 
For LauncherPro Plus users only:

  • Fixed the QuickContact popup not showing on the Messaging widget when the sender doesn’t have a photo assigned.
  • Fixed not being able to move/remove the card-style Messaging widget when there are no SMS messages on your phone.
  • Fixed the Calendar widget displaying multi-day events only on the first day. Both the calendar and agenda views should now display these events on each day they take.
  • Tweaked the Calendar widget to use better localized strings for dates.

 

That’s it for now. Hopefully I’ll be able to finish the Friends (Twitter + Facebook) widget next week or the one after. It’s the most complicated widget (as far as coding goes) in the LauncherPro Plus series yet so it’s going to take more time than usual to finish it.

Click here to download the APK file.

sms_widget_screenshot1

LauncherPro v0.7.5.1 released!

A new build of LauncherPro has just hit the Android Market. Here’s what’s new:

For all users:

  • Fixed a bug where changing the icon on the default dock shortcuts would revert back to the default icon after restarting LauncherPro (this didn’t happen when you changed the shortcut too).
  • Fixed the menu button not responding after using the trackball or a hardware arrow key.
  • Fixed a bug in the 3rd party scrollable widgets code that would cause the widget to be accidentally lifted while scrolling it.
  • Changed the loading mechanism for the new “Activities” shortcut feature, since it wasn’t loading on some phones due to the amount of data on the list. It should load on all phones now. If you have a lot of apps installed, it might take a couple of minutes for the list to load.
  • Set dock shortcuts to ignore swipes when they have no swipe gesture action set.

For Plus users only:

  • Brought back the daily updating of the calendar widget to keep it up to date. I’ve tested the memory usage when using this and the previous memory leaks are fixed.
  • New Messaging widget!. The fourth widget in the LauncherPro Plus series brings your SMS messages right to your homescreens. There are two styles to choose from, a card view that shows one message at a time, and a list view that shows all your messages in a list. Since widgets are now resizable, there’s only one pre-set size for each style, you can resize them to your liking. After you’re done resizing a widget, press the “Back” button on your phone to save the changes and go back to the launcher (just repeating this because I saw a lot of people complaining about their phone being “frozen” after resizing a widget).
     

     
    In the card mode, you can scroll vertically through your messages. There’s buttons to reply and delete any message, and you can click the sender’s photo to bring out their QuickContact popup (on phones that have this functionality, otherwise it will open their contact card).
     
    In list mode, you can reply to any message by clicking on it. To delete a message or mark it as read, long-press on it and choose the desired option from the menu. You can also click on the sender’s photo to bring up their QuickContact popup (again, only on phones that support it). Clicking on the “Messaging” title should open your default messaging application. There’s two additional buttons, one for marking all messages as read (the button with the checkmark) and the other to compose a new message (it should create and open a blank message on your default messaging application).
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  • Edit: 0.7.5.1 fixes a bug in 0.7.5.0 where moving the new Messaging widget would cause it to stop automatically updating until either the screen was rotated or LauncherPro was restarted.

 
Click here to download the APK file

 
If you have any questions, suggestions, or bug reports, please don’t post them in the comments. Head over to our forum and post them there. (READ the rules and stickies first!)

LauncherPro v0.7.4 now in the Market

A new version of LauncherPro is now available in the Android market. Here’s what 0.7.4 brings:

For all users:

  • New: Activity shortcuts. When adding shortcuts to your homescreens or dock, there’s a new option called “Activities”. This will let you create shortcuts to activities (screens within applications) that are not usually accessible directly. For example, you can set it to open your calendar’s Agenda screen, or even LauncherPro’s preferences screen. The activities are sorted by application, and you can choose the label for the shortcut. Please be ware that a LOT of activities aren’t meant to be called from external applications, so with many of them you’ll get an error message saying that we cannot open that activity, or the activity might open and crash immediately because it’s missing information that it expects to receive.

 
For Plus users:

  • Fixed a bug with the Calendar widget. The system that made it update at midnight every day (to keep the calendar updated) was leaking memory and causing force-closes after several screen rotations. For now, you’ll need to manually refresh the widget (use the little Refresh icon at the bottom of the widget) every day, until I can find a solution to keep it up to date without causing memory issues.
  • For Droid X users: Initial support for proper resizing of Blur widgets! Many of the Blur widgets now resize just like on the Blur launcher. Some widgets still show some weird behaviour when resized, hopefully I will be able to fix it in a future update.

 
Click here to download the APK file

 
If you have any questions, suggestions, or bug reports, please don’t post them in the comments. Head over to our forum and post them there. (READ the rules and stickies first!)

LauncherPro v0.7.3 released!

The new version of LauncherPro just hit the Android market and it brings some very cool stuff! Here’s what’s new:

For all users:

  • Improved screen rotation speed
  • New “Launch shortcut…” action for dock icon swipe gestures. Now you can also launch shortcuts like Direct Dial, Bookmark, Direct Message, etc. with the new shortcut swipe gestures!

For Plus users only:

  • Fixed a bug with the new Calendar widget that was causing force closes and screen reloads.
  • Fixed the bug where opening an event from the Agenda part of the Calendar widget would show the wrong date.
  • New “Add” (“+”) button on the Calendar widget for adding events to the calendar.
  • New option to use 24-hour format in the Calendar widget. It’s under Preferences > LP Widget Settings > Calendar Widget. Make sure to refresh the widget (use the icon on the bottom bar of the widget) after changing this.
  • NEW: Resizable widgets!. Now you can resize any widget! Long-press on a widget until it lifts up the screen, then release it in the same spot. You should now see a resize box around it and a yellowish overlay. Use the resize handle to change the size (use the overlay as a guide) and release the handle to see how the widget will look resized. When you find a size that you like, press the “Back” button on your phone to save the changes and go back to your homescreens.
     
    Edit: We now have initial support for resizing Droid X widgets too!

Click here to download the APK file

 
If you have any questions, suggestions, or bug reports, please don’t post them in the comments. Head over to our forum and post them there. (READ the rules and stickies first!)

A quick update…

Sorry for not having posted a changelog for 0.7.2 yet. I’ve been super busy working on another major new feature for Plus users and didn’t have time to do a proper changelog (with screenshots and all), so I’m going to post a quick one until next update.

Here’s what’s new in version 0.7.2.0:

For All users:

  • Improved code for 3rd party scrollable widgets. This should improve stability and performance when using 3rd party scrollable widgets like Pure Messenger, Android Agenda Widget, etc. Credit goes to Francois Deslandes (creator of Pure Messenger) for the code.
  • Fixed force-close when opening the “Hidden Apps” screen on the preferences on some phones.
  • New Calendar icon on the LauncherPro Icons menu.
  • New: Option to change the icon only on dock shortcuts. When you long-press on a shortcut you’ll get choice to either change the shortcut or just change the icon.
  • NEW: Dock shortcut gestures! Now each dock shortcut has an optional secondary action that you can trigger by swiping your finger upwards or downwards on it. Actions vary from launching any app selected by you, showing screen previews, showing notifications, hiding/showing the status bar, and opening the app drawer. Option to set a shortcut as the swipe action (so that you can set it to a Direct Dial shortcut, for example) will come in a future release.

 
For LauncherPro Plus users only:

  • Fixed (hopefully) a bug when generating thumbnails for the Bookmarks widget, where the process would fail halfway through and many bookmarks would end up with incorrect thumbnails.
  • NEW: Calendar widget. The third widget in the LauncherPro Plus series is the Calendar widget. By default it shows you a grid calendar for the current month, highlighting days that have events. You can scroll it vertically to switch to another month. Clicking on a day will change the widget to an Agenda view, where you can view your events for that day and the following 30 days. You can return to the calendar view by clicking the icon at the top right corner of the widget.

     
    An “Add” button to open the “New Event” screen on your calendar will be added in a future release. So please stop requesting it :-)

     
    Also, I’m already aware of a bug when opening events from the Agenda view will show the date as being in 1970. Don’t worry, it hasn’t modified your events, it’s simply displaying the wrong info. It will be fixed on the next release.

 
If you have any questions, suggestions, or bug reports, PLEASE DON’T post them in the comments. Head over to our forum and post them there. (READ the rules and stickies first!)