The Android Developers subreddit is a great place to talk with others who are neck-deep in the Android ecosystem's underbelly, whether you want to compare notes, have questions answered, or even recruit for a group project. Most of the time, people who work for Google developing AOSP Android tend to steer clear, since they have their own duties to worry about. Today, however, was an exception, with some developers who have worked on Android 7.0 Nougat hopping on the subreddit to host an "ask me anything" session. Eleven of the main developers involved in Android took time to answer user questions, but received so many, that they will be working on them for the next two days or so.
The eleven developers participating in the AMA were Media Framework manager Rachad Alao, UI toolkit team lead Chet Haase, core platform engineering director Anwar Ghuloum, systems software and battery life director Paul Eastham, developer advocate Dirk Dougherty, Android framework team manager Dianne Hackborn, UI toolkit technical lead manager Adam Powell, ActivityManager and WindowManager technical lead manager Wale Ogunwale, user experience manager Rachel Garb, support library technical lead Alan Viverette, and Android Studio product manager Jamal Eason. The festivities kicked off on Tuesday, at 10 AM EST. Readers began sending questions at that point, which would start seeing responses around noon. The response, predictably, was a bit overwhelming for the team of developers on board. By the time 2:10 PM had rolled around, the dust had cleared and the event was over, with enough leftover questions for the team to chew on for two days.
During the course of the questions and answers, the team promised to begin paying more attention to the Android bug tracker, talked about supporting more of the Java 8 specification, and even talked about updates for Google Play Services in the Android Emulator, saying that they could assuage a lot of headaches by rolling out more core features and fixes in those updates and requiring full reinstallation of the SDK much less often, so that's what they'll be doing. Questions about API calls, ancient Android headaches, and support for legacy UI components came up. The team also clarified a bit about the Night Mode that went missing from recent Android N Developer Preview builds, saying that the dark theme could end up in the final version, since it's so simple to call and implement. A number of battery drain bugs were also touched on, promising better battery life when Nougat begins rolling out officially. There was even time for a few words about integrating a new language to replace Java; of course, the answer was along the lines of 'it's an interesting idea, but no.'If you have fairly verbose knowledge of Android or want to see what went into Nougat and how things may look going forward, having a look through the AMA in its current state and bookmarking it to check out the questions that will be answered later may serve you quite well.