Posted on September 7, 2012

Android App - Purdue Maps

After my internship at Amazon, I became even more comfortable with Eclipse IDE and Java programming so I decided to make some Android Apps to enhance my OOP skills. Browsing through Google Play's directory of apps led to me believe there is a shortage (and a need) of a Purdue campus finder very much like the one that is available on iOS.

So, I present to you Purdue Maps:

Purdue Maps Screenshot

If you're a Purdue CS student like me, you might be wondering how I've managed to create a database of campus locations as there isn't really one made available "publicly". I started my search from Purdue's campus map and wondered if the Google Maps overlay and geo-coordinates are somehow obtained from a database. I digged deeper into the website's JavaScript files using Google Chrome developer tools and I discovered this gem:

JavaScript Screenshot

Very interesting! So I navigated to that address and found myself looking at an XML file of campus locations with their abbreviations, geo-coordinates and street addresses! What comes next is rather easy, I converted the XML contents into an SQLite database and included it into my Android app to be accessed through custom search suggestion functionality. I didn't create a web service to serve the data as I didn't see the need to overcomplicate things when it is just a small database of locations. I hope you enjoy the app!