May 2017 Meetup: Advanced RxJava & Conductor

May 2017 Meetup: Advanced RxJava & Conductor

I’d like to think that our meetup group always has a great turnout because the people are cool – and not just because there’s usually pizza and beer 😉 I first met Dallas Gutauckis when he attended our meetup after moving to NYC a while ago. It was the first time I heard about SeatGeek and the cool stuff they were doing in the event ticketing space. It’s no surprise that Dallas went on to speak at the first Droidcon NYC about Android animations. When he reached out about hosting a meetup at SeatGeek, how could we say no? 

Sandwiches, foxy pillows, balloons, and snazzy lounge chairs greeted 150 meetup members when they disembarked from the elevator. After the usual drinks and chit chat, we buckled down to learn about advanced RxJava and Conductor. 

Stephen gave us an advanced look at RxJava usage, going through lifecycle management, retries, error handling and more. He suggests, “Read the source code for Retrofit’s RxJava adapter. Understand what it’s trying to do while converting the Call object into an Observable. Take that information and apply it to how you interact with your REST adapters.” 

Watch his talk below at the 3:37 mark.
– Slides:

Yousuf talked about Conductors and its uses as compared to Fragments and their pain points. He showed us how Conductor brings “view-like simplicity with fragment-like flexibility.” 

For those wanting to check Conductor out, Yousuf’s advises: “Check out the demo app, there are tons and tons of great examples, and it’s probably the best way to learn Conductor. Also check the source code for Conductor, super simple to parse and understand. Try taking a fragment and turning it into a controller instead. Easiest way to see how you would use it.”

– Slides:
– Library:
– Demo app:

Watch both talks below, many thanks to SeatGeek for recording the audio and slides!

See you next month at Button!

April 2017 Meetup: ExoPlayer 2.0 & Lint

April 2017 Meetup: ExoPlayer 2.0 & Lint

For April, we welcomed Vimeo to our family of awesome meetup hosts! We thoroughly enjoyed their space, swanky arm chairs, and of course, sandwiches and pizza. Be sure to check out their Android app, DayTripper, which came out of a recent hackathon.

Kyle Venn from the Vimeo team talked about ExoPlayer 2.0. When asked about tips for our group, Kyle suggested: “Number one tip: make sure you understand how ExoPlayer works before trying to customize it (or even before using it). If you don’t need ExoPlayer’s customizability, then maybe MediaPlayer is better fit. If you decide that ExoPlayer is right for the job, be careful not to only copy and paste code from the official sample app. I’d highly suggest thinking through the architecture of your use case beforehand and understanding what each piece of the ExoPlayer initialization code does.

The second tip would be to look at the issue tracker on the ExoPlayer GitHub since it’s an amazing resource for learning more about the library.” Check out Kyle’s slides and watch his talk down below.

John Rodriguez with the Square team helped us brush up on Lint. His tips for people interested in Lint are:

  1. Join the lint-dev group here!
  2. Read the Android source for great examples!

You can view his slides here and watch his talk right here:

Thanks to Michael, Kate, Gabriella, and Melissa for helping us coordinate. See you next month at SeatGeek!

March 2017 meetup: Realm & Moving Mountains

March 2017 meetup: Realm & Moving Mountains

For our last meetup of the winter, we headed to Facebook NY to learn from Tom Wilson (Blue Apron) and Jason Sendros (Facebook). The Facebook recruiting team were amazing as usual and treated our group to pizza, beer, and plenty of refreshments from their impressive refrigerator in the event room. Kang Zhang (Instagram) welcomed the group on behalf of our sponsor before Kevin introduced Tom to kick off talks.

Tom discussed Realm and its powerful new database. He went over tradeoffs that every developer should consider, as well as tips and tricks to get the most out of using Realm. Tom’s number one tip: “Realm is awesome, but make sure it fits your needs before jumping in blindly. In particular, things like partial updates are much trickier in Realm than in other database systems.”

Jason walked the group through working with critical pieces of infrastructure without disturbing other developers or users. Jason advises, “If you’re going to rewrite a part of your code base, make the change incrementally.”

Many thanks to the Facebook AV team for recording the talks and Q&A!.
See you all next month at Vimeo on April 19th!

Until next time,

Feb 2017 meetup: Taming Camera2 + How to become a well-rounded Android developer

Feb 2017 meetup: Taming Camera2 + How to become a well-rounded Android developer

The American Express headquarters may seem far to some, but it was no big deal for the 100+ developers who came out for our February meetup. We helped ourselves to pizza and refreshments before kicking back and relaxing in the cushy auditorium. 

Andrew Orobator presented his talk, “The Guide to Becoming a Well-Rounded Android Developer.” He shared his thoughts on what it takes to become a well-rounded Android developer, revealing productivity tips, UX advice, and more. Andrew advises, “My one takeaway for boosting Android Productivity is to optimize the hot path. If you recognize yourself doing the same task over and over, see if you can find a way to make that task more efficient.” His slides can be found here

Matt Davis gave his talk, “The Taming of Camera2, a Talk in 3 Apps.” He walked through three social apps (Beme, Exit Poll Live, and Fliq) and used them as case studies to show what it takes to build a camera-centric experience.  He covered the best starting points with existing sample projects, UX tips, live streaming, and how to think outside of the box to create exciting features. (If they’re available to share, Matt’s slides will be linked here later.)

After the exciting talks, those with energy left to Lily O’Brien’s for the afterparty. I personally was beat and headed home – but got to stroll through the amazing Oculus for the first time! 

Hope everyone had a good time at AMEX – we’ll see you March 22 at Facebook 🙂

Ringing in 2017 with Facebook

Ringing in 2017 with Facebook

We’ve always had great turnouts for our meetups, but our most recent one drew an official headcount of 204 members! Maybe it was the talks, smooth check-in process, or maybe even the pizza? Whatever it was, thanks for helping us ring in a new year of meetups with a spectacular crowd! 

The recorded meetup is now up on the touchlab channel, so check them out if you couldn’t join us. Read on for Ben, Igor and Hendri’s tips for the group below, along with links to their slides (if provided).

Ben’s tip for Fingerprint Authentication, slides here.
“The Material Design spec has a section on fingerprint — be sure to read it while plotting out the fingerprint flows in your app.  There’s some helpful information on how to design the UI, but it goes a lot further than that. You’ll discover that the spec also discusses some of the use cases where you’ll be interacting with some of the API-related code we looked at during the talk, too!”

Hendri’s tip for handling offline on your app:
“Think about how your app would function without connectivity from day one.”

Igor’s tip for Annotations, slides here.
“Annotations are extremely powerful, every Android developer should know how they work and although creating your own custom annotations can be challenging, they can result in much cleaner code and great productivity increase.”

See you at AMEX for our February meetup! We’ll have talks on Camera2 and tips/tricks on becoming a successful Android developer 🙂