cwac-masterdetail

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Java
Version
v0.1.0 (Nov 23, 2013)
Created
Nov 14, 2013
Updated
Dec 16, 2015
Owner
Mark Murphy (commonsguy)
Contributor
Mark Murphy (commonsguy)
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THIS PROJECT IS RETIRED

CWAC-MasterDetail: Same UI Pattern, Fewer Moving Parts

The master-detail pattern as an approach for presenting a collection of content to the user has been discussed since the introduction of tablets to the Android ecosystem in 2011. In this pattern, the list of content (master) and a piece of content (detail) are presented side-by-side on a tablet, particularly in landscape orientation. In other environments, notably phones, the master and detail are presented one at a time. The objective is to allow the same UI definition to leverage a tablet's greater screen space without much extra development work.

However, once you start tugging on the thread of the master-detail pattern, you quickly realize that there are many other design patterns that Google recommends that would affect your implementation, such as using contextual action bars (a.k.a., action modes) for operations on content. Getting all of this design guidance to work, and dealing with classic Android challenges like configuration changes, results in a lot of infrastructure code, before you even begin to start writing actual business logic for the app.

This library is designed to supply that infrastructure code, leaving you free to focus more on what makes your app unique or otherwise important.

This Android library project is also available as a JAR. JavaDocs are also available to accompany this README.

Basic Usage: Arbitrary Model

Use these instructions if your data model is something more complex than a List of something.

Step #1: Download the JAR and put it in the libs/ directory of your project (or, if you prefer, clone this GitHub repo and add it as a library project to your main project).

Step #2: Extend MasterDetailActivity and MasterDetailHelper.

Step #3: Override buildMasterDetailHelper() in your MasterDetailActivity to return an instance of your MasterDetailHelper.

Step #4: Override buildPagerAdapter() in your MasterDetailHelper to return a PagerAdapter, just like you would create if you were using a ViewPager. Make sure your PagerAdapter has a useful getPageTitle() implementation, just like you would if you were using PagerTabStrip or similar indicators with your ViewPager.

And that's it.

What you get includes:

  • Automatic display of the one-at-a-time (a.k.a., single-pane) and side-by-side (a.k.a., dual-pane) master-detail presentations, based upon the device's width.

  • In single-pane mode, when the user switches to the detail, the detail is shown in a ViewPager, to allow for horizontal swiping to browse the content, without having to bounce back and forth between the master and the detail.

  • In dual-pane mode, the pane sizes are resizeable by the user, by long-pressing on the divider between them, then dragging (using a slightly-modified version of Justin Shapcott's SplitPaneLayout)

  • The list contents for the master are automatically generated from the titles of the pages in the ViewPager

Other features can be enabled by opting into them, using various configuration options described later in this document.

Basic Usage: List Model

Use these instructions if your data model is a List of model objects, and you want to gain additional built-in assistance for that from the library.

Step #1: Download the JAR and put it in the libs/ directory of your project (or, if you prefer, clone this GitHub repo and add it as a library project to your main project).

Step #2: Extend MasterDetailActivity and MasterDetailController (a subclass of MasterDetailHelper).

Step #3: Override buildMasterDetailHelper() in your MasterDetailActivity to return an instance of your MasterDetailController.

Step #4: Override a series of methods in your MasterDetailController subclass:

  • buildModelCollection(), to return an ArrayList of whatever your model class is, with whatever starter data you want to have (e.g., current values loaded from database)

  • getModelTag(), given an instance of a model object from your list, should return some uniquely identifying tag for that object

  • buildFragmentForTag(), given one of the aforementioned tags, should return a Fragment, designed for display in the detail area, for the model associated with that tag

  • createNewModel() should return a new, empty-but-initialized, instance of your model class (note: you do not need to add it to your list; that will be done for you)

  • removeModel(), given an instance of a model object from your list, should remove it (e.g., delete associated database row) (note: you do not need to remove it from your list; that will be done for you)

Step #5: While technically optional, when you create your MasterDetailController, you will probably want to supply it with an instance of MasterDetailController.Options, where you can supply configuration data to the controller. Specifically, you will want to call the following methods on the MasterDetailController.Options:

  • optionsMenuResource(), to provide a menu resource ID to use for the options menu

  • addMenu(), to provide a menu item resource ID to show, in the options menu, to allow the user to add an item to your model collection

  • actionModeResource(), to provide a menu resource ID to use for the action mode

  • removeMenu(), to provide a menu item resource ID to show, in the action mode, to allow the user to remiove an item from your model collection

And that's it.

What you get includes all of what you get from the previous instructions for using MasterDetailHelper, plus:

  • Automatic handling of the add action bar item, to create a new instance of your model and add it to the collection (and the master list), plus display it to the user

  • Automatic action mode for operating in multiple-choice mode, triggered by the user long-pressing on a row in the master list

  • Automatic handling of the delete action mode option, removing the selected models from the collection (and the master list)

Again, other features can be enabled by opting into them, using various configuration options described later in this document.

Simple Configuration and Usage

This section outlines some fairly easy ways that you can augment what you get "out of the box" with this library.

MasterDetailOptions

You can supply a MasterDetailOptions instance to your MasterDetailHelper via the one-parameter constructor. MasterDetailController takes a MasterDetailController.Options object, as noted previously, and MasterDetailController.Options is a subclass of MasterDetailOptions.

This options object provides light configuration data to the MasterDetailHelper, to reduce the number of methods you need to override to get things to work.

MasterDetailOptions supports:

  • actionModeResource(), to provide a menu resource ID to use for the action mode

  • modelFragmentTag(), to provide the name to use for the fragment tag for the model fragment maintaining your model collection across configuration changes (usually, the default is fine)

  • dualPaneWidthDip(), to indicate how many dip is the "dividing line" between when we use single-pane mode (master or detail visible) or dual-pane mode (master and detail visible simultaneously) (default is 720dip)

MasterDetailOptions and MasterDetailController.Options offer fluent interfaces, so the aforementioned methods return an instance of the options object, allowing you to build an instance like this:

  private static MasterDetailController.Options buildOptions() {
    MasterDetailController.Options options=
        new MasterDetailController.Options();

    options.optionsMenuResource(R.menu.actions).addMenuId(R.id.add)
           .removeMenuId(R.id.remove).actionMode(R.menu.action_mode);

    return(options);
  }

Action Bar

Your MasterDetailHelper can override onCreateOptionsMenu() and onOptionsItemSelected() methods that behave equivalent to their activity counterparts. Be sure to chain to the superclass for each of these, to leverage built-in support offered by the library (particularly with MasterDetailController).

Automatic Action Mode

If your MasterDetailHelper wants an action mode to appear when the user long-presses on a list row, use actionModeResource() on the MasterDetailOptions object to return the menu resource ID ( R.menu.whatever) to be used for the action mode itself. The library will handle starting and closing the action mode for you. You can also override the standard ActionMode.Callback methods on your MasterDetailHelper (e.g., onActionItemClicked()), though please chain to the superclass to allow the library's implementations to do their work as well.

An MasterDetailController can additionally override getActionModeTitle() and getActionModeSubtitle(), which will be called to populate the title and subtitle of the action mode. MasterDetailHelper implementations would perform the same work in methods like onItemCheckedStateChanged(), working directly with the ActionMode instance.

Empty Views and Multiple-Choice Views

Your MasterDetailHelper can override buildListEmptyView(), to return the View that should be shown in the master area when there are no models in your collection (e.g., your PagerAdapter returns 0 for getCount()). The default implementation is a simple ProgressBar.

Similarly, you can override buildDetailEmptyView() to return the View to be shown in the detail area when no model is chosen in the master. This only has an effect in dual-pane scenarios; in single-pane scenarios (e.g., phones), the detail is only shown if a model was chosen in the master. The default is simply a blank View.

If you elected to enable multiple-choice action mode support, you can also override buildDetailMultipleChoiceView(), which should return a View that will be shown in the detail area when two or more models are chosen in the master. Once again, this only has an effect in dual-pane scenarios. You are passed a SparseBooleanArray (culled from the ListView and its getCheckedItemPositions()) to let you know which models were chosen, in case this affects your decision on what to show. The default is simply a blank View.

Custom Master Contents

If the simple title-of-the-page ListView rows in the master do not meet your needs, you can override getView() on MasterDetailHelper to format your rows as you see fit. Or, you can override buildListAdapter() and provide your own ListAdapter for the master. In this latter case, make sure that the ListAdapter and PagerAdapter contents line up (e.g., the first row in the ListAdapter maps to the first page of the PagerAdapter).

Advanced Configuration

In addition to the configuration hooks specified above, you can do more to tailor how your master and detail are presented.

Custom Activity Base Class

If this all sounds neat, but you cannot extend MasterDetailActivity, simply copy the logic from that implementation into your own activity (or activity base class). Mostly, it is matter of forwarding select lifecycle methods and other event callbacks to the MasterDetailHelper for processing.

Dependencies

This project depends on the Android Support package v13 edition. Using MasterDetailController also requires the CWAC-Pager JAR or Android library project.

This project requires an android:minSdkVersion of 14 or higher.

Version

This is version v0.1.0, meaning that it is progressing slowly.

Demo

In the demo/ sub-project you will find a sample project demonstrating the use of MasterDetailController and MasterDetailActivity.

License

The code in this project is licensed under the Apache Software License 2.0, per the terms of the included LICENSE file. Note that a slightly-modified version of Justin Shapcott's SplitPaneLayout, included in this library, is also licensed under the Apache Software License 2.0.

Questions

THIS PROJECT IS DISCONTINUED

Release Notes

  • v0.1.0: moved simple configuration to MasterDetailOptions and MasterDetailController.Options
  • v0.0.2: fixed default implementations of offerActionMode() and buildModelCollection()
  • v0.0.1: initial release

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