Gradle isn’t just a Bad Word

Android developers love to curse Gradle; the only time they notice it is when it fails. When your app’s build works correctly you’re focused on your app’s UI and code – not the build. This powerful build system does a lot and Android Studio depends heavily on it.

Let’s take a look at what Gradle really does for you, what the different parts of your build.gradle file do and how to read the build output. There are a ton of things that can be tweaked within the Gradle build – it can be quite daunting to figure out where to start! Before you paste that snippet of Groovy from Stack Overflow, it’s good to understand what it’s going to do.

This session will cover the Gradle CLI, executing tasks, controlling output, and go over some handy options for inspecting your project. Managing dependencies is a big topic, but we will go over the basics. Then look at extension capabilities such as custom tasks, adding plugins, and even a quick glimpse of how to make your own! Then you will learn the greatest Gradle trick of all – building dependencies dynamically using a composite build. This is invaluable when you are trying to debug an issue in a dependent library or are creating your own.