Documentation at http://www.purplefoto.com/
PurpleDock works in both Portrait and Landscape orientation and has been tested with a variety of phones running Android 2.2 (Froyo), 2.3.x (Gingerbread), and 4.0.x (Ice Cream Sandwich). It works when connected to power and disconnected. GPS usage is throttled when not connected to power in order to save battery life.
PurpleDock allows customization of three of the launch buttons. The stickpin, headphones, and microphone buttons are pre-assigned to Google Places, Google Music, and Voice Search. To override these buttons, tap and hold for 1 second to bring up an editor. You will need to know the full name of the application and the name of the Activity to launch. If you're running CyanogenMod or a ROM without Google Apps, you may find that the default button values for Music and Places may require some adjustment as these apps aren't present on many aftermarket ROMs.
Is PurpleDock better than your OEM app? Maybe, maybe not, but it does what I want and I hope it works for you. The code for PurpleDock is available on Github at https://github.com/ehcloninger. Please file bugs against PurpleDock on Github.