The following is the first few sections of a chapter from The Busy Coder's Guide to Android Development, plus headings for the remaining major sections, to give you an idea about the content of the chapter.

Swiping with ViewPager

Android, over the years, has put increasing emphasis on UI design and having a fluid and consistent user experience (UX). While some mobile operating systems take “the stick” approach to UX (forcing you to abide by certain patterns or be forbidden to distribute your app), Android takes “the carrot” approach, offering widgets and containers that embody particular patterns that they espouse. The action bar, for example, grew out of this and is now the backbone of many Android activities.

Another example is the ViewPager, which allows the user to swipe horizontally to move between different portions of your content. However, ViewPager is not distributed as part of the firmware, but rather via the Android Support package. Hence, even though ViewPager is a relatively new widget, you can use it on Android 1.6 and up.

This chapter will focus on where you should apply a ViewPager and how to set one up.

Pieces of a Pager

AdapterView classes, like ListView, work with Adapter objects, like ArrayAdapter. ViewPager, however, is not an AdapterView, despite adopting many of the patterns from AdapterView. ViewPager, therefore, does not work with an Adapter, but instead with a PagerAdapter, which has a slightly different API.

Android ships two PagerAdapter implementations in the Android Support package: FragmentPagerAdapter and FragmentStatePagerAdapter. The former is good for small numbers of fragments, where holding them all in memory at once will work. FragmentStatePagerAdapter is for cases where holding all possible fragments to be viewed in the ViewPager would be too much, where Android will discard fragments as needed and hold onto the (presumably smaller) states of those fragments instead.

Paging Fragments

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Paging Other Stuff

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Revisiting the Containers Sampler

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