Dart and Flutter ‐ What CY had done in the Second Week of February 2022

This is a highly personalized post.

Why I did this...
What I Downloaded
Linked Devices
Commandline-Oriented Framework Configuration
Essential Dart ‐ Need an Update
External Links and Resources

Dash ‐ the mascot
for the Dart language
the Flutter framework

Why I did this...

Being over-ambitious, I had tried to help a YouTuber and her team realize their goal of a production of a mobile app.

I thought the Flutter framework works like Java frameworks, that is: once a programmer finished the coding, there were two virtual machines coded for iOS and Android OS respectively, so that how the App looks and works is consistent.

I was wrong. From my understanding, programmers need to compile for iOS and for Android OS (and for web broswer) under the Flutter framework. Like you write a C++ code, you should compile it for Windows and Linux respectively if you want the program available for both OS.

Anyway, I would like to record the installation process and the minimum testing for future reference.

What I Downloaded

It turns out that Flutter framework is quite huge for my laptop. I needed to install several Google products: Google Chrome (must have; around 290 MB), Android SDK(11.3 GB), Android Studio(1.9 GB), Flutter(1.9 GB) and Android SDK Platform-Tools(35 MB) (its significance will explain later within this blogpost). The latter four cost 15.1 GB in total.

Logo of Flutter

Linked Devices

I did not have an iPhone on hand, but my smartphone is from Samsung, i.e. I have a physical device of Android OS for testing. Originally I did not want to use my phone for testing, but...

Each virtual device costs around 500 MB. The most ridiculous thing was that every time the Android Studio created a virtual device and I tried to run the emulator, a message "The emulator process for [virtual device name] has terminated." popped. I searched online but could not find a solution. After some while, I decided to use my smartphone for testing. (screenshot 1) (screenshot 2)

For most resources I had searched, they suggested a USB line was needed to connect the physical device to the computer. But I had found that it is possible to connect the physical device to the computer completely via WiFi.

The process was also uneasy. I encountered a message "adb server version ([number]) doesn't match this client ([number])". Luckily I found a possible solution (on GitHub) via searching.

And I would like to add that before the Android smartphone becoming a physical device for developing, we have to enable the "developer option". The way to enable this option is quite funny ‐ "tap the Build Number option 7 times". See the official document.

Commandline-Oriented Framework Configuration

This section follows the official document. They (I)(II) are great.

$ flutter doctor
$ flutter devices
$ cd the_working_directory $ flutter create myapp
$ cd myapp
$ flutter run
Launching lib/main.dart on SM A515F in debug mode...
Running Gradle task 'assembleDebug'...                             38.2s
✓  Built build/app/outputs/flutter-apk/app-debug.apk.
Installing build/app/outputs/flutter-apk/app.apk...               625.7s
Syncing files to device SM A515F...                                350ms 

Flutter run key commands.
r Hot reload. 🔥🔥🔥
R Hot restart.
h List all available interactive commands.
d Detach (terminate "flutter run" but leave application running).
c Clear the screen
q Quit (terminate the application on the device).

💪 Running with sound null safety 💪

 more msg related to the debugger and profiler for the testing device...

Application finished.

Essential Dart ‐ Need an Update

Logo of Dart

I tried to get a free programming book, therefore I visited the List of Free Learning Resources In Many Languages page. There were two books listed, and I started with Essential Dart. However, the book needs an update.

At this moment, I just pick what in the "Getting started with Dart" section.

Hello World

$ dart hello_world.dart

This runs smoothly.

Web App from Dart

To build the App, run on the terminal

$ dart create -t web-simple cat_display
$ cd cat_display

Change the content of index.html into

<img id="cats"></img>

Change the content of main.dart into

import 'dart:html';
/// Stores the image in [blob] in the [ImageElement] of the given [selector].
void setImage(selector, blob) {
  FileReader reader = new FileReader();
  reader.onLoad.listen((fe) {
    ImageElement image = document.querySelector(selector) as ImageElement;
    image.src = reader.result as String;

main() async {
  var url = "https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/28/Tortoiseshell_she-cat.JPG";

  // Initiates a request and asynchronously waits for the result.
  var request = await HttpRequest.request(url, responseType: 'blob');
  var blob = request.response;
  setImage("#cats", blob);


$ dart pub global activate webdev

Then run

$ webdev serve


$ webdev serve web:[port number]  #ref

Check http://localhost:[port number]/ on the browser then.

To kill the process:
$ ps -e | grep dart
  _________PID_ pts/1    00:00:00 dart:webdev.dar
  _another_PID_ ?        00:00:05 dart:build_runn
$ kill -9 [list of PIDs of related processes]

Getters and Setters of Dart

void main() {
  var cat = new Cat();

  print("Is cat hungry? ${cat.isHungry}"); // Is cat hungry? true
  print("Is cat cuddly? ${cat.isCuddly}"); // Is cat cuddly? false
  print("Feed cat.");
  cat.isHungry = false;
  print("Is cat hungry? ${cat.isHungry}"); // Is cat hungry? false
  print("Is cat cuddly? ${cat.isCuddly}"); // Is cat cuddly? true

class Cat {
  bool _isHungry = true;
  bool get isCuddly => !_isHungry;
  bool get isHungry => _isHungry;
  void set isHungry(bool hungry) => this._isHungry = hungry;

Then run

$ dart getters_and_setters.dart

Summary(I) - Mobile Apps Development

It spends more time than what I thought. I am unsure that I can finish the basic learning by the end of this year.

Summary(II) - Infrastructures...

Maybe look on YouTube videos before I install a framework...

Suggestion - on Learning Dart...

As long as there are no good free books for Dart, I think one may study the Java language before diving into Dart.

External Links and Resources

  1. A simplified introduction to Dart and Flutter, by Sameeha Rahman (2019 March)
  2. Twitter: Flutter Developer (active)
  3. 22 Short Lessons To Become A Mobile Programmer Using Flutter Framework, by Zaiste, (Posted: 2019 Nov; Updated: 2020 Jul)

Except from images and codes from other personnels, the content of this blogpost is released under a copyleft spirit. One may share (full or partial) content of this blogpost on other platforms if you share it under the free and open content spirit.

Contact on twitter: @e7_87.

Discuss via GitHub issues: here.

Email: fungcheokyin at gmail.com

Created Date: 13th February, 2022.