Course:CS 491 - Mobile Software Development
Description and objectives: In this course we will investigate developing software for mobile environments. The free and accessible Android platform will be emphasized. This course contributes to UWEC's creative and critical thinking learning goal.

Upon successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Unify principles of software engineering, user interface design, and event-driven programming to construct publication-ready mobile apps for phones and tablets.
  • Leverage existing services in today's highly-modular mobile architectures and substitute in custom replacements.
  • Navigate the dichotomous nature of mobile environments, in which networking is accompanied by lost signals, pervasiveness by interruptibility, performance by drained batteries, and sensors by our noisy world.
Instructor:Chris Johnson (
Office hours:MF 11-11:50 AM, T 3:30-4-30 PM in 134 Phillips
Discussion board:
Lecture:TR 2-3:15 PM
Phillips 106
Exams:Midterm - October 20
Final (presentation) - Tuesday, December 20 from 1-2:50 PM
?%Final project
Schedule: Your instructor would like to cover the following coarse list of topics throughout this semester: widgets, layouts, event-driven programming, database storage, GPS, wireless communication, OpenGL, sensor-based computation, media input and output, and concurrency. To maximize your return from this course, he has scrapped his schedule and instead solicits your ideas on apps you'd like to design and write together.
Prerequisites: Java experience. No mobile device is required.
Communication: Your instructor is finite and values focus. Please keep these points in mind when needing to communicate with him:
  • Post questions to the discussion board. Use email only when absolutely necessary.
  • Your instructor responds to email only once a day, in the late afternoon.
  • Attend posted office hours. Do not drop by at other times unannounced. If you have schedule conflicts, send an email to arrange an alternate time.
Blog: Course notes and homework post mortems will be posted at You will be given an account to publish your post mortems. Account information will be sent via email.
Good studentship: Follow these principles to maximize your learning and grade:
  • Getting a good education requires both good teaching and good learning. It's hard work for both instructor and student.
  • Early is better than on time. Late is unacceptable. Hard deadlines are set to ensure faster grading.
  • Plan for homework to take longer than you think. Ample time is allotted. Extensions are not granted.
  • Do your own coding. Discussion of problems is allowed, but plagiarism and soliciting solutions will earn you a report of academic misconduct and lower your grade. You don't want to live in a world serviced by cheaters, so don't be one yourself.
  • Grades are calculated according to your scores, not your circumstances.
Accommodations: Any student who has a disability and is in need of classroom accommodations, please contact the instructor and the Services for Students with Disabilities Office in Old Library 2136 at the beginning of the semester.