I’ve wanted to “factory reset” my old Android phones for years but hadn’t found a good way of exporting text messages including the embedded images and videos. Some solutions involve rooting your phone, and I didn’t want to do that. Nor did I want to use an app that copied to Gmail or the cloud. And I wanted to know exactly what the app’s code was doing. So I found the MessageBackup repo on GitHub and used it as a starting point.
Published my first Android app today. It’s called When Moving and you may find it handy if you’re into personal information tracking.
When Moving differs from the others in that it doesn’t continuously poll GPS. It polls according to the frequency you specify (every 10-90 seconds), but only if the accelerometer detects motion.
In short, if the accelerometer doesn’t think you’re moving, it won’t poll for GPS updates, and your battery will last longer because of it.
There’s a quirk with Android that renders a partial wake lock useless if you want to poll the accelerometer while the screen is off. The workaround is to acquire a screen-dim + acquire-causes-wakeup wake lock. The screen turns on while you’re polling, but that’s the only solution I’ve found.
I’ve implemented the workaround in my GPSing project. Hopefully this won’t cause a drastic change in battery usage.
The data hoarder in me is making an appearance. Been tracking my GPS coordinates more consistently for the past few weeks, but InstaMapper on Android is less than ideal for the task. Geoloqi as well. They consume too much battery. I’d rather not have to turn them off when I’m going to stay put for a while – I don’t enjoy fiddling with my phone in public.
Last weekend I began a project of my own that uses the accelerometer to determine when GPS should turn on.