Friday, August 16, 2013

I don't have a cat...Why am I building a litterbox?

A little over a year ago, I got motivated enough to start trying to learn how to develop apps for Android.

Shortly after that, I got too busy to keep up with it - and I stopped.

But now (finally) I have gotten back to it!

So far, I have one very rough finished app that allows you to query a local SQLite database of origami models to find what publications they are in (needs a good bit of work before I do more than mention it).  And, the beginnings of my 'litterbox' project (for more detail - check out my earlier posts).

In case you don't feel like reading my old posts about litterBox - What it is meant to be is a way to define data structures using a standardized UI (nothing special there) and then it will provide a way to request that data and methods to update/delete it.

At first glance, that might look like it is just another front end for a database.  And, it is.

But, it will make it easier to define the data structures by non-programmers.  That is what will make it special.  Another thing that I hope to include is a way to disconnect the view of the data from the way it is stored.  I'm currently using local SQLite, but I also would like to enable a back end on NoSQL, cloud storage, etc.

There will also be an included basic UI for accessing data in those structures so that you can describe something and right away begin keeping track of those things.

At some point in the (hopefully near) future, I plan on making it possible for people to share the definitions that they come up with to build up so that other users will not have to reinvent them.  After all, once someone successfully describes an 'address' - why should everyone else have to do it all over again?

All of this was inspired by a project that I needed to do where the data structure needed to be modifiable by the users.  After implementing that project - suddenly it seemed like what I had done could be used to store information about anything.

I guess we'll see if I can really generalize this.

Stay tuned.