written by: unwesen


How do smart shelves work?

When you add an item to the database, it always gets added to the “All” smart shelf. All items must have a type — PackRat supports media items that are texts of some sort, audio recordings, video recordings or games. Once you select a type for your item, it will also automatically get added to the smart shelf for that type.

How do I add items?

There are three ways for adding items to the database. You can scan a barcode via your phone’s camera, or enter search terms. Either will try and find product details on the Internet1, and offer the results up for you to pick from. Or you can enter all the details yourself.

These options are available via the “Menu” button on your phone, after you’ve navigated to any shelf. If you navigated to a manually edited shelf, an item you add to the database will also be added to the shelf.

Scanning barcodes is also available from the “Menu” button on the start screen.

How do I delete shelves?

Try long-pressing on the shelf. That pops up a dialog that lets you edit shelf details, or delete a shelf. When you delete a shelf, the items on it still remain in your database.

Not quite coincidentally, long-pressing on media items also pops up a dialog with actions related to media items.

Feature Request

Why is X not a feature of PackRat?

I started programming PackRat mainly for myself. I may not have thought of it. Why don’t you suggest new features?

How do I make a suggestion?

Please head over to the Feedback Forum for PackRat and make suggestions there. There is a shortcut to that forum built into the app itself.

Will you/when will you add feature X to PackRat?

It’s likely that I will, and I will do so when I find the time for it.

This is a project I spend some of my spare time on, not a paid job. If you want to pay to me to implement a particular feature, you can find my contact details via my professional website. Please do me a favour, though, and research rates for experienced programmers here in the UK before contacting me.

Why are you not selling PackRat then/Will PackRat remain free?

Yes. In one form or another, PackRat will remain free. There might be room for making a paid version available with additional features, but at this moment, I have no plans of making one.

How do you make money off PackRat?

Short answer: I don’t.

Long answer: I figure that having an app of my own used by people around the world is as good an advertisment for my contracting work as any. If you feel you need to reimburse me for my efforts, however, why not get some merchandise from the store?


PackRat crashes/force closes! Help!

As of version 1.2.0, the information in this section is obsolete. Version 1.2.0 reports crashlogs to me automatically when you restart PackRat.

Before version 1.2.0 it was impossible for me to diagnose your crashes from where I sit without your help.

But you can help me by sending me log files from your phone. The easiest way to do so is to download Log Collector (Market link). First, do whatever it takes to make the crash happen. Then, start Log Collector and send the log to my email address jens AT finkhaeuser DOT de.

Other Bugs

If there’s no crash log you can send me, I’ll still try to help. Send me as detailed a description of what you did when the bug occurred as you can. Also include what the bug does — it might be that it’s a small glitch that I don’t notice without looking out for it.

Particularly when it comes to bugs while scanning barcodes, it’ll help me if you can send me an image of the barcode as well, in good enough quality that I can scan it off my computer’s screen. Your phone’s built-in camera should suffice for that.

  1. Specifically, Google Base. []