I would like to share with you guys an app I recently finished called Fresco. With Fresco you can view images posted on the Astronomy Picture of the Day website of NASA. Every image has an explanation written by a professional astronomer and every image ever posted on this website is available in this app (starting somewhere back in 1995) and the goal was to create a very polished, responsive, fast and easy to use interface while being very feature rich.
Use this QR-code to install the app!
* View over 5800 images with a new one being downloaded every day
* Mark images as favorites
* View a random image with one button click (I use it to find cool pictures and stories, you can cycle through all images or your favorites)
* View a grid with image archive (with ascending, descending and random sorting)
* Full Text Search for images (e.g. searching for 'apollo moon armstrong' will show all images containing those words, the index uses Porter Stemming Algorithm)
* Double click an image to view it full-size and you can zoom it
* Set image as wallpaper
* Automatically set wallpaper to today's image as soon as it's downloaded (my favorite)
* Share images (via all channels available on your device)
Why it was made
For a long time I was used to a similar app called NasaImages, but it disturbed me that it had a sluggish interface, showed wrong dates and was not able to correctly show 'special characters' like ë and ß. Also i would have liked to set the wallpaper automatically when a new image was downloaded. I addressed all these issues and tried to create a very fast, very polished, simple and yet feature-rich 'replacement' app which is developed using the latest design guidelines. Fresco is the result
There's an image of two astronauts reaching with their fingers to one another like Michelangelo's painting in the Sistine Chapel (the creation of Adam). I found that image very touching and decided to use it as icon of the app. Wall paintings like the creation of Adam are called frescoes, so that's how I came up with the name (well, actually my girlfriend came up with it, so I guess I should say thanks honey ).
Why this post?
First of all, every developer wants to share his creation because he/she wants to entertain or help others with a problem he/she has had. For me it's no different, I love this app and everyday I wake up I can't wait to check the new image posted and I want to share my excitement with you guys. Second, this is my first serious attempt to create an Android app and I am curious how people think I've done so far. The app is completely free of charge, although it is ad-supported. This is because the images are indexed on my own VPS and that has to be paid and I hope to do that with this app and my future apps
Who am I?
I am a reader of XDA for quite some years now. I did not post a lot and I'm not active in a lot of boards, mostly the Windows Mobile Phone (pre 7) ones and Android/SGS1 boards from two years ago until now. My name is Jori and I live in the Netherlands in a small town called Purmerend (close to Amsterdam). I am a software engineer for a company that creates CRM software and in my free time Iove to play handball, expand my coding skills and spend time with my family.
I hope you like (the idea) of this app and hopefully you guys can give me some feedback At least let me thank you for reading.
1.5.2 (december 7, 2014)
- Changed retrieval url to be able to download images again
- Updated local database with pictures until december 7, 2014
1.5.1 (october 23, 2013)
- Fixed a bug in database initialization which could cause spontaneous re-initializations and crashes
- Added a pop-up icon in the action-bar for all devices (devices without HW buttons already had that icon)
- Changed sharing, so you can share the actual image in stead of a link to it
- Increased responsiveness of the app
- Removed the Image of the Day (NASA) archive, due to the change of the website of the NASA, this cannot be kept up-to-date.
1.5.0 (july 24, 2013)
- The notification will now correctly be removed when a new new wallpaper has been selected (e.g. when you select an alternative). After selecting the wallpaper, the selection dialog will also automatically be closed.
- Fixed a bug where a CPU of your phone could go up to 100% usage due to the NASA IOTD images not being available (anymore)
- Removed all NASA IOTD images, since NASA changed the method of exposing this data. This will be fixed in the next version (probably somewhere in August), for now only APOD images will be available.
- Decreased the amount of error reports being sent to only the unexpected ones
1.4.8 (jun 7, 2013)
- Decreased the amount of error reports being sent to only the unexpected ones
- Added the possibility to send anonymous user statistics (this is enabled by default and can be disabled in the preferences)
1.4.7 (jun 4, 2013)
- Improved the random crashes fix and don't let Fresco crash anymore when it occurs.
- Added a setting to send catched crash reports for better inspection of the root cause of the random crash bug (no sensitive/private data will be sent, you can disable this in the settings screen)
1.4.6 (may 30, 2013)
- Fixed an issue where downloading images after a reboot would only occur after you started the app at least once
- Improved the random crashes fix (on some devices the crashes still occur, hopefully everything is ok now)
- Improved the speed of downloading new entries
1.4.5 (may 4, 2013)
- Fixed a spontaneous crash that could occur sometimes (due to an out of memory error)
1.4.4 (may 3, 2013)
- Fixed random crashes in alarm manager (app keeps crashing on certain devices)
- Widgets were still not clickable sometimes, tried to fix that (again)
1.4.3 (apr 5, 2013)
- Added option in the settings dialog to move the internal db Fresco uses to the sd (to save up internal storage space)
- Fixed an issue where on some devices Fresco could crash all the time. Please do a clear all data if you encountered this issue after you update to this version.
- Thoroughly went through all crash reports and tried to fix all of them (including random crashes)
- Fixed a whole lot more strange characters in Dutch translations
1.4.2 (mar 10, 2013)
- Added a .nomedia file to each folder Fresco uses to save cached images (so Fresco's images will not show up in your gallery app(s) anymore), you can disable this switch in the settings screen.
- Fixed strange characters in Dutch translations (like é )
- [3.0+] Fixed issue with the picture frame widget showing a faint line on the bottom
- [3.0+] Probably fixed an issue clicking the widget (over time) would not work anymore
1.4.1 (mar 5, 2013)
- [3.0+] Fixed issue with the picture frame widget not fully resizing on high resolution devices
1.4.0 (mar 3, 2013)
- Rewrote background worker mechanism, this should fix all 'freeze' situations and make Fresco a lot more responsive (like it should)
- [3.0+] Added (scrollable) home screen widgets for today's image (Picture frame, just text or both)
- Fresco now chooses an appropriate location for cached images and this location is now editable in settings
- Notifications of new wallpapers didn't work until the app was started at least once
- In the select wallpaper dialog you can now open Fresco (to read the text of the image)
- Removed unused space on imageview (sometimes the text was even not visible without scrolling while half of the screen was black)
- [3.0+]Widgets are now clickable
- Automatically setting an IOTD image as wallpaper could fail
1.3.1 and 1.3.2 (jan 28, 2013)
- Tried to fix an OutOfMemory issue
1.3.0 (jan 27, 2013)
- Added a complete archive of the Nasa image of the day (iotd) images (found on www.nasa.gov), over 2300!
- Added the latest iotd to the wallpaper selection screen
- Clarified the tabs on the wallpaper selection screen by making the page indicator lines thicker and moving them to the top
- Improved image resizing of smaller images (they will now stretch)
- Improved memory utilization when opening large images
1.2.1 (jan 21, 2013)
- Some devices still had problems with stretching wallpapers, fixed that now!
1.2.0 (jan 20, 2013)
- Setting a wallpaper will stretch to full screen now! (thanks for reporting this one)
- Auto set wallpaper has now a new option in which you can if and how you want to be notified if a new wallpaper is available (see screenshot)
- Images are initially rendered larger now so it looks more epic and when double clicking it'll open the full-screen view and zoom in automatically
- When you select a random image, you can now scroll back and forth through the selected images
- Retrieval of latest entries was slow when initializing the database for the first time
- Fixed Android 2.2 compatibility issues (crashes)
- Fixed a whole bunch of crashes: restoring Fresco after a long period, setting a video as wallpaper (disabled now), when initializing the Fresco database (sometimes the dialog was already dismissed)
1.1.1 (jan 10, 2013)
- Added a Dutch translation for images where available (starting from january 1st, 2005). Fresco will automatically select a language for you, but it can be changed in the settings screen.
- Every image has a unique id now (a code)
- At the image archive you can now select an image not only by date, but also by code
- You can now import (or merge) and export favorites
- You can open the source webpage of an image
- Added information about the source of the images in the settings dialog
1.0.1 (jan 3, 2013)
- Initial public version
Feedback / problems
You can use Twitter to report problems or send some feedback: toverbalApps
Play store: Fresco (not available anymore because of suspension of developer account, see here)
Direct link to APK (1.5.2): https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_5_2.apk
1.5.0 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_5_1.apk
1.5.0 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_5_0.apk
1.4.9 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_9.apk
1.4.8 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_8.apk
1.4.7 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_7.apk
1.4.6 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_6.apk
1.4.5 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_5.apk
1.4.4 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_4.apk
1.4.3 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_3.apk
1.4.2 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_2.apk
1.4.1 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_1.apk
1.4.0 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_4_0.apk
1.3.2 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_3_2.apk
1.3.1 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_3_1.apk
1.3.0 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_3_0.apk
1.2.1 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_2_1.apk
1.2.0 - https://dl.dropbox.com/u/11837707/fr...esco_1_2_0.apk