Introducing MAXS

Table of Contents

1 What is MAXS?

MAXS is an acronym for M odular A ndroid X MPP S uite and consists of modules, transports and the main application.

Modules provide the specialized functionality. For example the bluetoothadmin module allows you to enable or disable the Bluetooth adapter. It therefore requests the according Android permission to do so. Usually, every module is specialized by a particular Android permission.

Modules are able to interact together. For example, having alone the smsnotify module installed, will only show new SMS notifications with the sender number, but not the name of the sender, since the smsnotify module is unable to read your contacts. But if you install the contactsread module, the smsnotify module will be able to query your contacts for one with the given number.

Transports send notifications to the user and receive commands.

MAXS main glues together the different modules and transports.

MAXS is heavily inspired by GTalkSMS, and hence it shares many ideas with GTalkSMS. In fact we hope that MAXS will share the same feature set as GTalkSMS at some point.

1.1 Modular and Secure!

MAXS is split into a main component, which we refer to as main from now on, transport components and various modules. It is the job of main to forward incoming commands to the modules and send the answer message from the modules back to the origin transport.

The modular design wouldn't be possible without Android's great inter-process communication (IPC) capabilities. For security reasons the IPC interfaces of MAXS are secured by custom Android permissions.

1.2 Resource-efficient

MAXS does not use foreground services. This allows Android to reclaim memory by killing MAXS services when needed. Usually these killed services are restared after a few seconds. MAXS saves it's full state to permantent storage, to easily recover from those interruptions.

In order to lower CPU and radio usage, MAXS follows these simple principles:

  • Send as much data at once as possible
  • Only send data if there is an interested receiver
  • Try to avoid sending data if the device is on battery

Furthermore MAXS avoids library dependencies where possible. Being not really a GUI focused app, there is no need for Action Bar Sherlok. MAXS does not display any ads, so it does not have to depend on ad libraries (Google AdMob and such). This helps to reduce the overall memory footprint of MAXS.

2 What can MAXS do for me?

You can get notifications about events on your Android device. Typical examples include

  • New SMS messages
  • Incoming phone calls
  • Current Battery state, i.e. percent and power supply source (AC/USB/Battery)

You are also able to control most aspects of your Android device. For example:

  • Send SMS messages
  • Disable or enable the Bluetooth Adapter
  • Query the contacts
  • Set or retrieve the clipboard content

3 How does it work?

MAXS commands are send from a master JID over a transport component (currently only XMPP) to the main component, which relays the commands to the according module.

A command usually consists of a command string, a sub command string and the optional arguments for the command. Usually the different strings are separated by a single space, but in certain situations, two spaces are required.

#+BEGINEXAMPLE <command> <subCommand> <args> #+ENDSRC

3.1 Enabling or disabling the Bluetooth adapter

#+BEGINEXAMPLE [17:14:02] User: bluetooth disable [17:14:04] AndroidDevice: Disabling bluetooth adapter [17:14:04] AndroidDevice: Bluetooth adapter changed state from 'on' to 'turning off' [17:14:07] AndroidDevice: Bluetooth adapter changed state from 'turning off' to 'off' #+ENDSRC

3.2 Retrieving the clipboard contents

#+BEGINEXAMPLE [17:19:19] User: clipboard set This is now the content of the device's clipboard [17:19:19] AndroidDevice: Clipboard set to: This is now the content of the device's clipboard [17:19:28] User: clipboard get [17:19:28] AndroidDevice: Clipboard: This is now the content of the device's clipboard #+ENDSRC

3.3 Receiving and sending SMS

#+BEGINEXAMPLE [17:20:49] User: sms send Jane Doe Have fun, see you later :) [17:21:02] AndroidDevice: Sending SMS to Jane Doe (+49424242): Have fun, see you later :) [17:21:05] AndroidDevice: SMS sent to Jane Doe (+49424242): Have fun, see you… [17:21:07] AndroidDevice: Recent contact: Jane Doe (+49424242) [17:21:14] AndroidDevice: SMS delivered to Jane Doe (+49424242): Have fun, see you… #+ENDSRC

In this example sms is the command, and send is the sub command. Everything after the send is the argument for the command. Notice that *after the name, there are two spaces, to distinguish the receivers name from the SMS body.

Also notice that sending a SMS also sets the recent contact to the receiver. The recent contact is used to remember the last contact the user interacted with. It is, for example, also set when a new SMS arrives and makes it easy to reply to the SMS message with the reply to command/sub command.

#+BEGINEXAMPLE [20:39:48] AndroidDevice: New SMS Received Jane Doe (+49424242): How are you? [20:39:52]: AndroidDevice: Recent contact: Jane Doe (+49424242) [20:40:19] User: reply to Fine thanks :) [20:40:22] AndroidDevice: SMS sent to Jane Doe (+49424242): Fine thanks :) [20:40:27] AndroidDevice: SMS delivered to Jane Doe (+49424242): Fine thanks :) #+ENDSRC

Note that some commands have default sub commands if there is none given. MAXS automatically inserts those commands. Furthermore there are short commands for some commands. For example the short command for reply is r. And since to is the default sub command for reply one could also write simply r in the example above.

#+BEGINEXAMPLE [20:39:48] AndroidDevice: New SMS Received Jane Doe (+49424242): How are you? [20:39:52] AndroidDevice: Recent contact: Jane Doe (+49424242) [20:40:19] User: r Fine thanks :) [20:40:22] AndroidDevice: SMS sent to Jane Doe (+49424242): Fine thanks :) [20:40:27] AndroidDevice: SMS delivered to Jane Doe (+49424242): Fine thanks :) #+ENDSRC

3.4 Display the current battery status

MAXS displays a few status items in the status string of your IM system (e.g. XMPP presence status)

#+BEGINEXAMPLE [22:08:20] My Droid is now Available (95-100% - Battery) #+ENDSRC

4 What are the available commands?

Try sending simply help as command.

5 How can I configure MAXS?

Have a look at the Quickstart Guide

Created: 2017-08-14 Mo 20:49

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