Tuesday, January 27, 2009

G1 and My Trouble With SDCARDS

I have been getting a LOT of reports of application trouble lately that can be resolved simply by un-mounting the SDCARD and restarting the phone.

This situation is starting to remind me of the old Nintendo games where you had to blow in the Nintendo slot to get the cartidge to work again and everyone had their own special way of fixing it:
  • Remove game
  • Blow in game cartridge to the toon of any M.C. Hammer song
  • Blow in nintendo counsole to the toon of "Baby Got Back"
  • Spin around 5 times
  • Put cartridge back in
  • Take back out blow in the game cartridge 5 times to the toon of "Yankee Doodle"
  • Sing "All along the watch tower" backwords in a Spanish accent
  • Watch a full episode of different strokes
  • Put it back in and slam it down really fast and push power
Sometimes, the fixes for SDCARD issues seem just as complicated and convelouted as the old Nintendo resolutions.

I've had to:
  • Unmount my SDCARD in the settings
  • Remove the card
  • Blow in the slot
  • Power the phone off
  • Put the card back in
  • Power the phone on again
As much as I think the SDCARD issues are enough to put the database back on the device, much of my user base just has TOO MANY movies to support that. Some people have collections of 1200 movies or more and their database alone is 30 MB.

I am starting to understand why Google didn't release apps running on the SDCARD as an initial feature and they recomend against storing databases on SDCARDs.

SDCARD support is so crappy!

Anyhow, I'm done with my rant and for now, I'll continue to walk users through fixing SDCARD issues. I just wish I didn't get so many negative comments on the Android Market for issues that are clearly resolvable.

Obviously turning the appliation on should NOT delete every movies in the database (and it doesn't). I don't even have any code that deletes ALL movies. Every DELETE query has a where clause on it such that it can ONLY DELETE ONE MOVIE AT A TIME!!!!!! Why on Earth would I even write a function like that and the fact that they come back when the phone is restarted or SDCARD is re-inserted resolves the problem should be a clue it's not in my control...

Anyhow, just keep the support questions comming. Sometimes it's honestly a bug and I can fix something. Those I like. Just remember to go update your Market comment that everyting is now puppy-dogs and rainbows.


  1. Didn't Nintendo et-al always say blowing on the card was a bad thing (tm) as moisture from your breath would corrode the contacts.

    Personally i have had no problems with the SDCard in my phone. Maybe there was a bad batch?

    On a different note:

    I imported most of my movies from another program. Is it possible to import all the icons of the movies, as i have them all saved in a dir as [upc].jpg


  2. @dizze

    I never read that, but it makes perfect sense to me now. I still remember all the local electronic shops sold replacement parts to fix the corroded or broken cartridge slots...

    Right now, importing images is not possible. I've been trying to think of a way to do that such that it wouldn't completely confuse the user community. If you have the UPC, you can just go to the edit menu and click the 'Lookup' button but I'm sure that will get tedious.

    I'll continue to work on an elegant solution and publish an update if or when I get it.