JSON Serializer

Serialize simple and not so simple data structures to JSON (like game state of lines game) under android

why do we need this

In my android apps I often need to save state (for example when it loses focus, it can be killed at any moment - but I would like to present the same game state when user opens it again). Saving complex data models means a lot of work - so some object marshalling solution would be nice. And there are a lot of nice and easy to use tools - XStream being my favorite due to great speed and simple usage.

Unfortunately those libraries bring a lot of dependencies with them, and that is not nice on android. Internal storage is small and precious - nobody likes 100MB apps.

So I went and wrote small and cosy json marshaller with only one external dependency - GSON - which is very lightweight and provides just JSON parser.

How it works


import com.google.gson.stream.JsonReader;
import de.pribluda.android.camerawatch.data.Camera;
import de.pribluda.android.jsonmarshaller.JSONUnmarshaller;


ArrayList<Camera> cameras = new ArrayList<Camera>(JSONUnmarshaller.unmarshallArray(new JsonReader(new InputStreamReader(inputStream)), Camera.class));

As you may imagine, it just reads an array of some class out of JSON reader. Just say what and where from.

And writing is also easy (actually current state of lines game when focus is lost):

StringWriter writer = new StringWriter();
JsonWriter jsonWriter = new JsonWriter(writer);

JSONMarshaller.marshall(jsonWriter, ss);
editor.putString(GAME_STATE, writer.toString());

nothing more than that (in case you are wondering - editor stores values in app preferences).


This is not a full blown customisable marshalling library - if you need this go for XStream or whatever you like. This library will read and write simple java beans with well behaved getters and setters, and also arrays of those objects. Not much, but enough for most configuration issues in android app and simple local data storage.


Released under apache license, sources are available on Github. Compiled version is available from maven repositories:


Have fun. And guess how big is it - 9659 bytes!