Optionally allow for automatic sync at program startup
Bram Schoenmakers commented
I implemented this very behavior with Tasker ( http://tasker.dinglisch.net/ ). I made a profile which detects when I open NewsRob, and when it does, it initiates a NewsRob sync (from the 3rd party actions).
Tasker is not free, but well worth the money if you're an automation geek, it can automate practically every aspect of your phone.
I'll toss my vote in for this idea. I find myself always clicking the sync now button immediately upon opening the app and this feature would save me the (very small) effort. It's not a deal-breaker, though. I'll continue to use the app without it. :)
I think it would be beneficial to have "Sync at startup" as an option in addition to sync interval. I like to keep my sync interval high, because it saves battery, and I check my feed at random times. Sure, the refresh button is handy enough, but I know I am going to hit it every time I access the app, so why not just have the option there?
I would like this as well. Pretty much the only thing wrong with newsrob for me.
Jeff, why do you have to hit manual sync when you start? Why not just have the app set to sync, say, every hour?
I have to hit manual synch almost every time I start. An option to optionally synch on launch would save me that step many times a day.
I don't want to take away from your point, but that's one reason why I added the action bar, so that it is very easy to hit refresh quickly... and it's more universal, like in between articles you want to re-up ;)
I definitely see the efficiency (and convenience) of downloading articles in the background and would not want to lose that feature. What happens for me is that I often open NewsRob before the (minimum) 30 minute synchronization interval and end up manually refreshing. For example, I'm at lunch and have 30 minutes to catch up on NewsRob, twitter, etc. I will quickly switch between the apps (sometimes long hold home, other times from the desktop icon) and it would be nice if NewsRob automatically synced if it has not since the last time I used it. Thanks for your explanation and considering this request.
bbmcgee, NewsRob is mostly targeted at being used in a disconnected mode.
Not so much because you are that often offline, but as an accelerator. Things that are available locally are much faster than even WiFi.
The idea is that it is not running on iOS, but on Android OS, and therefore can just get the latest and greatest news in the background and then when you pick up the phone you have the news and don't have to babysit the download process.
It would actually be counter productive to have the sync running at startup, because it takes away CPU power and bandwidth that could have happened in the background while you weren't using your phone yourself.
Having said all that, different people want to use their phone and NewsRob in different ways and so I will support this feature request eventually. I just thought I still take the time to explain what I see how NewsRob "should" be used if efficiency would be king ;)
It would seem that sync at startup would cover all use cases since every time NewsRob is opened, updated feeds/articles are shown. Doesn't this trump sync every x hours and at a specific time? However, this would still need to be combined with polling for the unread count for those who use the unread widget.
Sure, it's a shame locale can't do the work for you. Personally, I'd be happy with the timer to start with - I don't care about wifi and weekends. Having said that, at the moment I'm living okay with just a 4-hourly sync (and, as you so correctly predicted, on my Nexus running 2.1 I don't even notice when NR is syncing in the background...).
Does Timerrific support plugins? Maybe you should ask the developer if he could list intents or something. :)
I'd like to keep the feature suggestion as small as possible, so that I can add them gradually to NewsRob.
I am not against (3) btw., but it is really some effort and there need to be many more votes to do that. I'll have to think about the best way to do that then anyway, because then people will ask for 6.00 am workdays, but not on the weekend, and only when there is Wifi and the battery is > 50%. That's what I hoped to have outsourced to Locale.
How about combining this with my other suggestion, to make a set of more rich sync timing options. So you'd have:
1. Sync every 1/2/4/6/12/24 hours
2. Sync at these times [click to add time]
3. Sync at startup [x]
That would give total control and be awesome. :)
Episode6, I am not sure I get why you would make the distinction between those two cases?
Definitely agreed! As long as its preceded by a quick check of the network state to prevent the service from hanging for 30 to 60 seconds. I think the manual refresh (as well as the background refresh) should skip the network state check.