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AI2_ANDROID_THINGSPEAK_CLIENT_EXTENSION

Android client ThingSpeak extension for MIT Application Inventor 2

This extension is intended to easily make use of the Read and Write features of the ThingSpeak cloud service provided by MathWorks in such a manner that programmer is able to transparently make use of the service without having to deal with much details of the implementation in the code side. With the App - also attached - you can easily check the extension working on a friendly interface:

For those who are not familiar with IoT stuffs, the key point to be aware is that the main goal achieved by using cloud servers is that we can design an architecture so that we don't need provide the server, which means that both sides of the system - the one being monitored, and the supervisory itself - now work as clients, as follow:

Essentially ThingSpeak is a Web server on which data is read and written via GET commands of the HTTP protocol. All replies come on the JSON format in raw text with no formatting, which means that no LF or CR characters are added, as can be seen on the left side of the following picture:

The first step to do is subscribe to the Thingspeak website, create a channel, and take note of the following data automatically generated, namely READKEY, WRITEKEY and CANNEL ID, highlighted bellow:

If you are not going to use multiple fields simultaneously, you can configure the channel to use only 1 of the 8 fields available, which would also shrink the size of the JSON structure. A single field is able to fit up to 255 characters, wich is quite enought to gather data from many peripheral devices.

It can be seen on the browser that the JSon structure is significantly smaller:

It is important to note that all data sent and received are in the ASCII format at the URL body, which means that if one wish provide extra security, it should be considered any kind of cyphering or even cryptography in order to atleast detect whether data was maliciously corrupted or not. Another point to remark is that the parsing was performed without using any JSon library, which means that if on one hand the structural integrity of the JSON format is not checked out, on the other hand it means that tasks are performed lightweight, not wasting core processing, particularly useful if application require to update the screen in realtime.

Note: With the Free licensing option, upload to the server (write) cannot be made within an interval time smaller than 15s otherwise client application will receive a negative response.

Here's an overview of the "source code" or rather, "source blocs" of the above demo application.

That's all you need, nothing else:

Below, a snapshot of the components:

Here, a snippet showing how much of the boring Java coding task can be avoided by customer, once it is embedded on the extension itself:

A brief description of each field on the given Demo program, you can refer to this document.

Feel free to make experiments and give feedback.

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Android client ThingSpeak extension for MIT Application Inventor 2

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