Android Programming

Android Firebase : ListView Master Detail - Save,Retrieve,Show [Open Activity]

Android Firebase ListView Master Detail Tutorial.

The Plan

This is an android firebase ListView Master Detail tutorial. How to save data to firebase,retrieve then show that data in a custom ListView.

  • Save data from edittext to google firebase database.
  • Retrieve the data by attaching events to a DatabaseReference instance.
  • Bind the data to a custom ListView using a BaseAdapter subclass.
  • Handle the ListView's itemClicks.
  • Open new Activity when a grid item is clicked.
  • Pass data to that new activity

What Is Firebase Realtime Database?

Firebase Realtime database is a database backend as a service Cloud hosted solution that gives us the platform to build rich apps.Normally we are used to making HTTP requests to read or write data against our servers.But not in Firebase.It uses synchronization technology that allows it to be realtime,but still performant.

Main Feautures?

  • Its realtime .

  • Platfrom Independent.

  • Easy Access Control.

  • It’s a NoSQL solution and is heavily optimized for performance.

  • Has Offline capability .

  • Its User Friendly.

1. Create Basic Activity Project

  1. First create a new project in android studio. Go to File --> New Project.

  2. Type the application name and choose the company name. New Project Dialog

  3. Choose minimum SDK. Choose minimum SDK

  4. Choose Basic activity. Choose Empty Activity

  5. Click Finish. Finish

Basic activity will have a toolbar and floating action button already added in the layout

Normally two layouts get generated with this option:

No. Name Type Description
1. activity_main.xml XML Layout Will get inflated into MainActivity Layout.Typically contains appbarlayout with toolbar.Also has a floatingactionbutton.
2. content_main.xml XML Layout Will be included into activity_main.xml.You add your views and widgets here.
3. MainActivity.java Class Main Activity.

In this example I used a basic activity.

The activity will automatically be registered in the android_manifest.xml. Android Activities are components and normally need to be registered as an application component.

If you've created yours manually then register it inside the <application>...<application> as following, replacing the MainActivity with your activity name:


        <activity android:name=".MainActivity">

            <intent-filter>

                <action android:name="android.intent.action.MAIN" />

                <category android:name="android.intent.category.LAUNCHER" />

            </intent-filter>

        </activity>

You can see that one action and category are specified as intent filters. The category makes our MainActivity as launcher activity. Launcher activities get executed first when th android app is run.

Advantage of Creating Basic Activity project

You can optionally choose empty activity over basic activity for this project.

However basic activity has the following advantages:

No. Advantage
1. Provides us a readymade toolbar which gives us actionbar features yet easily customizable
2. Provides us with appbar layout which implements material design appbar concepts.
3. Provides a FloatinActionButton which we can readily use to initiate quick actions especially in examples like these.
4. Decouples our custom content views and widgets from the templating features like toolbar.

Generated Project Structure

AndroidStudio will generate for you a project with default configurations via a set of files and directories.

Here are the most important of them:

No. File Major Responsibility
1. build/ A directory containing resources that have been compiled from the building of application and the classes generated by android tools. Such a tool is the R.java file. R.java file normally holds the references to application resources.
2. libs/ To hold libraries we use in our project.
3. src/main/ To hold the source code of our application.This is the main folder you work with.
4. src/main/java/ Contains our java classes organized as packages.
5. src/main/res/ Contains our project resources folders as follows.
6. src/main/res/drawable/ Contains our drawable resources.
7. src/main/res/layout/ Contains our layout resources.
8. src/main/res/menu/ Contains our menu resources XML code.
9. src/main/res/values/ Contains our values resources XML code.These define sets of name-value pairs and can be strings, styles and colors.
10. AndroidManifest.xml This file gets autogenerated when we create an android project.It will define basic information needed by the android system like application name,package name,permissions,activities,intents etc.
11. build.gradle Gradle Script used to build the android app.

3. Create Firebase and Download Configuration File

Head over to Firebase Console, create a Firebase App, Register your app id and download the google-services.json file. Add it to your app folder.

Add Config File

4. Specify Maven repository URL

Head over to project level(project folder) build.gradle and

  1. Add Google services classpath as below
  2. Add maven repository url
// Top-level build file where you can add configuration options common to all sub-projects/modules.

buildscript {
    repositories {
        jcenter()
    }
    dependencies {
        classpath 'com.android.tools.build:gradle:2.3.3'
        classpath 'com.google.gms:google-services:3.1.0'


        // NOTE: Do not place your application dependencies here; they belong
        // in the individual module build.gradle files
    }
}

allprojects {
    repositories {
        jcenter()
        maven {
            url "https://maven.google.com" // Google's Maven repository
        }
    }
}

task clean(type: Delete) {
    delete rootProject.buildDir
}

5. Add Firebase Dependencies

Add them in you app level(app folder) build.gradle, then

dependencies {
    compile fileTree(dir: 'libs', include: ['*.jar'])

    testCompile 'junit:junit:4.12'
    compile 'com.android.support:appcompat-v7:23.3.0'
    compile 'com.android.support:design:23.3.0'
    compile 'com.android.support:cardview-v7:23.3.0'

    compile 'com.google.firebase:firebase-core:11.8.0'
    compile 'com.google.firebase:firebase-database:11.8.0'
}
apply plugin: 'com.google.gms.google-services'

Make sure you apply plugin: 'com.google.gms.google-services' as above.

6. Our Model Class

  • Is our Data Object class
  • Must Have an empty constructor.
  • You can create,pass data to and use other constructors
package com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_Model;

/**
 * 1. OUR MODEL CLASS
 */
public class Spacecraft {

    String name,propellant,description;

    public Spacecraft() {
    }

    public String getName() {
        return name;
    }

    public void setName(String name) {
        this.name = name;
    }

    public String getPropellant() {
        return propellant;
    }

    public void setPropellant(String propellant) {
        this.propellant = propellant;
    }

    public String getDescription() {
        return description;
    }

    public void setDescription(String description) {
        this.description = description;
    }
}

7. Our FirebaseHelper Class

  • Basically,our CRUD class.
  • Here we perform reads and writes to Firebase database.
  • To persist data we use setValue().
  • Prior to calling setValue() method,we call push() to ensure we append data to database,not replace.
  • We fill an arraylist with spacecraft objects.
package com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_FireBase;

import com.google.firebase.database.ChildEventListener;
import com.google.firebase.database.DataSnapshot;
import com.google.firebase.database.DatabaseError;
import com.google.firebase.database.DatabaseException;
import com.google.firebase.database.DatabaseReference;
import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_Model.Spacecraft;

import java.util.ArrayList;

/**
 * 1.SAVE DATA TO FIREBASE
 * 2. RETRIEVE
 * 3.RETURN AN ARRAYLIST
 */
public class FirebaseHelper {

    DatabaseReference db;
    Boolean saved=null;
    ArrayList<Spacecraft> spacecrafts=new ArrayList<>();

    public FirebaseHelper(DatabaseReference db) {
        this.db = db;
    }

    //WRITE IF NOT NULL
    public Boolean save(Spacecraft spacecraft)
    {
        if(spacecraft==null)
        {
            saved=false;
        }else
        {
            try
            {
                db.child("Spacecraft").push().setValue(spacecraft);
                saved=true;

            }catch (DatabaseException e)
            {
                e.printStackTrace();
                saved=false;
            }
        }

        return saved;
    }
    //IMPLEMENT FETCH DATA AND FILL ARRAYLIST
    private void fetchData(DataSnapshot dataSnapshot)
    {
        spacecrafts.clear();

        for (DataSnapshot ds : dataSnapshot.getChildren())
        {
            Spacecraft spacecraft=ds.getValue(Spacecraft.class);
            spacecrafts.add(spacecraft);
        }
    }
    //READ BY HOOKING ONTO DATABASE OPERATION CALLBACKS
    public ArrayList<Spacecraft> retrieve() {
        db.addChildEventListener(new ChildEventListener() {
            @Override
            public void onChildAdded(DataSnapshot dataSnapshot, String s) {
                fetchData(dataSnapshot);
            }

            @Override
            public void onChildChanged(DataSnapshot dataSnapshot, String s) {
                fetchData(dataSnapshot);

            }

            @Override
            public void onChildRemoved(DataSnapshot dataSnapshot) {

            }

            @Override
            public void onChildMoved(DataSnapshot dataSnapshot, String s) {

            }

            @Override
            public void onCancelled(DatabaseError databaseError) {

            }
        });

        return spacecrafts;
    }
}

8. Our CustomAdapter class

  • Responsible for Layout Inflation.
  • Also for data binding to views.
  • Then opens new activity and passes data to it via android.Content.Intent.
package com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_UI;

import android.content.Context;
import android.content.Intent;
import android.view.LayoutInflater;
import android.view.View;
import android.view.ViewGroup;
import android.widget.BaseAdapter;
import android.widget.TextView;

import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.DetailActivity;
import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.R;
import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_Model.Spacecraft;

import java.util.ArrayList;

/**
 * 1. where WE INFLATE OUR MODEL LAYOUT INTO VIEW ITEM
 * 2. THEN BIND DATA
 */
public class CustomAdapter extends BaseAdapter {
    Context c;
    ArrayList<Spacecraft> spacecrafts;

    public CustomAdapter(Context c, ArrayList<Spacecraft> spacecrafts) {
        this.c = c;
        this.spacecrafts = spacecrafts;
    }

    @Override
    public int getCount() {
        return spacecrafts.size();
    }

    @Override
    public Object getItem(int pos) {
        return spacecrafts.get(pos);
    }

    @Override
    public long getItemId(int pos) {
        return pos;
    }

    @Override
    public View getView(int position, View convertView, ViewGroup viewGroup) {
        if(convertView==null)
        {
            convertView= LayoutInflater.from(c).inflate(R.layout.model,viewGroup,false);
        }

        TextView nameTxt= (TextView) convertView.findViewById(R.id.nameTxt);
        TextView propTxt= (TextView) convertView.findViewById(R.id.propellantTxt);
        TextView descTxt= (TextView) convertView.findViewById(R.id.descTxt);

        final Spacecraft s= (Spacecraft) this.getItem(position);

        nameTxt.setText(s.getName());
        propTxt.setText(s.getPropellant());
        descTxt.setText(s.getDescription());

        convertView.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View v) {
                //OPEN DETAIL
                openDetailActivity(s.getName(),s.getDescription(),s.getPropellant());
            }
        });

        return convertView;
    }
    //OPEN DETAIL ACTIVITY
    private void openDetailActivity(String...details)
    {
        Intent i=new Intent(c,DetailActivity.class);
        i.putExtra("NAME_KEY",details[0]);
        i.putExtra("DESC_KEY",details[1]);
        i.putExtra("PROP_KEY",details[2]);

        c.startActivity(i);
    }
}

9. Our MainActivity

  • Launcher activity.
  • Reference ListView set its adapter.
  • Shows Input Dialog on FAB button click.
  • Sets up our Firebase's by initializing the DatabaseReference.
package com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail;

import android.app.Dialog;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.support.design.widget.FloatingActionButton;
import android.support.v7.app.AppCompatActivity;
import android.support.v7.widget.Toolbar;
import android.view.View;
import android.widget.Button;
import android.widget.EditText;
import android.widget.GridView;
import android.widget.ListView;
import android.widget.Toast;

import com.google.firebase.database.DatabaseReference;
import com.google.firebase.database.FirebaseDatabase;
import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_FireBase.FirebaseHelper;
import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_Model.Spacecraft;
import com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.m_UI.CustomAdapter;

/*
1.INITIALIZE FIREBASE DB
2.INITIALIZE UI
3.DATA INPUT
 */
public class MainActivity extends AppCompatActivity {

    DatabaseReference db;
    FirebaseHelper helper;
    CustomAdapter adapter;
    ListView lv;
    EditText nameEditTxt,propTxt,descTxt;

    @Override
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
        setContentView(R.layout.activity_main);
        Toolbar toolbar = (Toolbar) findViewById(R.id.toolbar);
        setSupportActionBar(toolbar);

        lv = (ListView) findViewById(R.id.lv);

        //INITIALIZE FIREBASE DB
        db= FirebaseDatabase.getInstance().getReference();
        helper=new FirebaseHelper(db);

        //ADAPTER
        adapter=new CustomAdapter(this,helper.retrieve());
        lv.setAdapter(adapter);

        FloatingActionButton fab = (FloatingActionButton) findViewById(R.id.fab);
        fab.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View view) {
                displayInputDialog();
            }
        });
    }

    //DISPLAY INPUT DIALOG
    private void displayInputDialog()
    {
        Dialog d=new Dialog(this);
        d.setTitle("Save To Firebase");
        d.setContentView(R.layout.input_dialog);

        nameEditTxt= (EditText) d.findViewById(R.id.nameEditText);
        propTxt= (EditText) d.findViewById(R.id.propellantEditText);
        descTxt= (EditText) d.findViewById(R.id.descEditText);
        Button saveBtn= (Button) d.findViewById(R.id.saveBtn);

        //SAVE
        saveBtn.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View v) {

                //GET DATA
                String name=nameEditTxt.getText().toString();
                String propellant=propTxt.getText().toString();
                String desc=descTxt.getText().toString();

                //SET DATA
                Spacecraft s=new Spacecraft();
                s.setName(name);
                s.setPropellant(propellant);
                s.setDescription(desc);

                //SIMPLE VALIDATION
                if(name != null && name.length()>0)
                {
                    //THEN SAVE
                    if(helper.save(s))
                    {
                        //IF SAVED CLEAR EDITXT
                        nameEditTxt.setText("");
                        propTxt.setText("");
                        descTxt.setText("");

                        adapter=new CustomAdapter(MainActivity.this,helper.retrieve());
                        lv.setAdapter(adapter);

                    }
                }else
                {
                    Toast.makeText(MainActivity.this, "Name Must Not Be Empty", Toast.LENGTH_SHORT).show();
                }

            }
        });

        d.show();
    }

}

10. Our DetailActivity

  • Yes,the detail activity here.To show our details.
  • Receives data from MainActivity via Intent.
  • Shows the data in TextViews.
package com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail;

import android.content.Intent;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.support.design.widget.FloatingActionButton;
import android.support.design.widget.Snackbar;
import android.support.v7.app.AppCompatActivity;
import android.support.v7.widget.Toolbar;
import android.view.View;
import android.widget.TextView;

public class DetailActivity extends AppCompatActivity {

    TextView nameTxt,descTxt, propTxt;

    @Override
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
        setContentView(R.layout.activity_detail);
        Toolbar toolbar = (Toolbar) findViewById(R.id.toolbar);
        setSupportActionBar(toolbar);
        FloatingActionButton fab = (FloatingActionButton) findViewById(R.id.fab);

        nameTxt = (TextView) findViewById(R.id.nameDetailTxt);
        descTxt= (TextView) findViewById(R.id.descDetailTxt);
        propTxt = (TextView) findViewById(R.id.propellantDetailTxt);

        //GET INTENT
        Intent i=this.getIntent();

        //RECEIVE DATA
        String name=i.getExtras().getString("NAME_KEY");
        String desc=i.getExtras().getString("DESC_KEY");
        String propellant=i.getExtras().getString("PROP_KEY");

        //BIND DATA
        nameTxt.setText(name);
        descTxt.setText(desc);
        propTxt.setText(propellant);

        fab.setOnClickListener(new View.OnClickListener() {
            @Override
            public void onClick(View view) {
                Snackbar.make(view, "Replace with your own action", Snackbar.LENGTH_LONG)
                        .setAction("Action", null).show();
            }
        });
    }

}

11. Our Layouts

ContentMain.xml

  • Our Master View
  • Holds our ListView
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<RelativeLayout xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
    xmlns:app="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto"
    xmlns:tools="http://schemas.android.com/tools"
    android:layout_width="match_parent"
    android:layout_height="match_parent"
    android:paddingBottom="@dimen/activity_vertical_margin"
    android:paddingLeft="@dimen/activity_horizontal_margin"
    android:paddingRight="@dimen/activity_horizontal_margin"
    android:paddingTop="@dimen/activity_vertical_margin"
    app:layout_behavior="@string/appbar_scrolling_view_behavior"
    tools:context="com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.MainActivity"
    tools:showIn="@layout/activity_main">

    <ListView
        android:id="@+id/lv"
        android:layout_width="match_parent"
        android:layout_height="wrap_content"
         />
</RelativeLayout>

InputDialog.xml

  • defines our input dialogs layout

Model.xml

  • defines our custom grids.
  • Available In Source.

ContentDetail.xml

  • Our Detail View.
  • Please view the source.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<RelativeLayout xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
    xmlns:app="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto"
    xmlns:tools="http://schemas.android.com/tools"
    android:layout_width="match_parent"
    android:layout_height="match_parent"
    android:paddingBottom="@dimen/activity_vertical_margin"
    android:paddingLeft="@dimen/activity_horizontal_margin"
    android:paddingRight="@dimen/activity_horizontal_margin"
    android:paddingTop="@dimen/activity_vertical_margin"
    app:layout_behavior="@string/appbar_scrolling_view_behavior"
    tools:context="com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail.DetailActivity"
    tools:showIn="@layout/activity_detail">

    <android.support.v7.widget.CardView xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
        android:orientation="horizontal" android:layout_width="match_parent"
        xmlns:card_view="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto"
        android:layout_margin="5dp"
        card_view:cardCornerRadius="10dp"
        card_view:cardElevation="5dp"

        android:layout_height="match_parent">

        <LinearLayout
            android:orientation="vertical"
            android:layout_width="match_parent"
            android:layout_height="match_parent"
            android:weightSum="1">

            <LinearLayout
                android:orientation="horizontal"
                android:layout_width="match_parent"
                android:layout_height="wrap_content">

                <ImageView
                    android:id="@+id/articleDetailImg"
                    android:layout_width="320dp"
                    android:layout_height="wrap_content"
                    android:paddingLeft="10dp"
                    android:layout_alignParentTop="true"
                    android:scaleType="centerCrop"
                    android:src="@drawable/spitzer" />

                <LinearLayout
                    android:orientation="vertical"
                    android:layout_width="match_parent"
                    android:layout_height="wrap_content">

                    <TextView
                        android:id="@+id/nameDetailTxt"
                        android:layout_width="wrap_content"
                        android:layout_height="wrap_content"
                        android:textAppearance="?android:attr/textAppearanceLarge"
                        android:padding="5dp"
                        android:minLines="1"
                        android:textStyle="bold"
                        android:textColor="@color/colorAccent"
                        android:text="Title" />

                </LinearLayout>
            </LinearLayout>

            <LinearLayout
                android:layout_width="fill_parent"
                android:layout_height="match_parent"
                android:layout_marginTop="?attr/actionBarSize"
                android:orientation="vertical"
                android:paddingLeft="5dp"
                android:paddingRight="5dp"
                android:paddingTop="5dp">

                <TextView
                    android:id="@+id/propellantDetailTxt"
                    android:layout_width="wrap_content"
                    android:layout_height="wrap_content"
                    android:textAppearance="?android:attr/textAppearanceLarge"
                    android:padding="5dp"
                    android:minLines="1"
                    android:text="DATE" />
                <TextView
                    android:id="@+id/descDetailTxt"
                    android:layout_width="wrap_content"
                    android:layout_height="wrap_content"
                    android:textAppearance="?android:attr/textAppearanceLarge"
                    android:padding="5dp"
                    android:textColor="#0f0f0f"
                    android:minLines="4"
                    android:text="Space craft details...." />

                <TextView
                    android:id="@+id/linkDetailTxt"
                    android:layout_width="wrap_content"
                    android:layout_height="wrap_content"
                    android:textAppearance="?android:attr/textAppearanceMedium"
                    android:padding="5dp"
                    android:textColor="@color/colorPrimaryDark"
                    android:textStyle="italic"
                    android:text="Link" />

            </LinearLayout>

        </LinearLayout>
    </android.support.v7.widget.CardView>

</RelativeLayout>

12. AndroidManifest.xml

  • Remember to add permission for internet in your manifest file.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<manifest xmlns:android="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res/android"
    package="com.tutorials.hp.firebaselistviewmdetail">

    <uses-permission android:name="android.permission.INTERNET"/>

    <application
        android:allowBackup="true"
        android:icon="@mipmap/ic_launcher"
        android:label="@string/app_name"
        android:supportsRtl="true"
        android:theme="@style/AppTheme">
        <activity
            android:name=".MainActivity"
            android:label="@string/app_name"
            android:theme="@style/AppTheme.NoActionBar">
            <intent-filter>
                <action android:name="android.intent.action.MAIN" />

                <category android:name="android.intent.category.LAUNCHER" />
            </intent-filter>
        </activity>
        <activity
            android:name=".DetailActivity"
            android:label="Detail View"
            android:theme="@style/AppTheme.NoActionBar"></activity>
    </application>

</manifest>

How To Run

  1. Download the project.
  2. You'll get a zipped file,extract it.
  3. Open the Android Studio.
  4. Now close, already open project.
  5. From the Menu bar click on File >New> Import Project.
  6. Now Choose a Destination Folder, from where you want to import project.
  7. Choose an Android Project.
  8. Now Click on “OK“.
  9. Done, your done importing the project,now edit it.
  10. You'll need to head over to Firebase Console, create app, then download configuration file and add to your project in the app folder.

More Resources

Resource Link
GitHub Browse Browse
GitHub Download Link Download
Video Tutorial Video

Oclemy,Cheers.