Reduce battery usage via Airplane mode app

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Nov 27, 2012 6:32:18 PM via Website

I've never created an android app, however I am a computer science major (sophomore), so I am relatively familiar with some java code. However, I'm still new to programming so forgive me if I say anything ignorant.

I spend a lot of time in areas where I have too little service for the phone to effectively use the networks to send information, but just enough service that my phone can still receive information from senders (texts/emails). I have noticed that the less service I have, the more battery power that is used to search for service.
My ultimate goal is to create an app that will put my phone on Airplane mode when it is locked and periodically turn off Airplane mode every X minutes.
The purpose of putting the phone on Airplane Mode when it is locked is to prevent the phone from using battery searching for service when I am not using it.
The purpose of turning off Airplane Mode every X minutes is to allow my phone to "update," by searching and hopefully connecting to a network so that I can be alerted of any missed text messages and/or calls that I have received since being on airplane mode.
If the phone is unlocked, I would like Airplane mode to be turned off.

Ideally, I would rather not have to write this code by myself because I do not think I am a skilled enough programmer to develop such an app yet. I would really appreciate it if someone else could either write it for me or at least guide me through the process of creating the app.
-Thank you to whomever may be able to help me.

— modified on Nov 27, 2012 6:36:45 PM