Telerik Open Sources Most Of Its Kendo UI HTML5 Framework

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2014-04-18_0903 Telerik, the company behind the popular Kendo UI library, this week announced that it is open sourcing the vast majority of Kendo UI’s tools and JavaScript framework features. This new Kendo UI Core package is licensed under the Apache 2.0 license, which allows developers to use it for both commercial and non-commercial projects. Read More

April 19th 2014 html5

Framework7 – Full Featured HTML Framework For Building iOS7 Apps

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Framework7 – Full Featured HTML Framework For Building iOS7 Apps

Full Featured HTML Framework For Building iOS7 Apps

April 5th 2014 html5, Mobile

WTF, HTML and CSS?

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WTF, HTML and CSS?

Reasons HTML and CSS might make you say what the fuck. A curated list of commonly frustrating HTML and CSS quandaries, miscues, and dilemmas.

April 1st 2014 CSS, html5

The Intersection Of SEO & Web Design

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As technology advances and web usage evolves, so do SEO best practices. Web designers now have more choices and technologies available than ever before. As we enter 2014, I expect we will continue to see advances in web design that bring even more options. I thought it would be helpful to revisit…



Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

December 21st 2013 html5

Using the application cache

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Using the application cache

HTML5 provides an application caching mechanism that lets web-based applications run offline

December 17th 2013 html5

Nickelodeon Partners With Ludei To Bring HTML5 Games To Its Upcoming Android App

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Ludei, which offers an HTML5 platform for building games and other apps, is announcing today that it’s powering the games in Nickelodeon’s upcoming Android app.

Ludei CEO Eneko Knorr said that Nickelodeon is basing “its entire game development strategy” on his company’s technology, with the kids’ entertainment channel treating the new app as a “container” that will include dozens of HTML5 games. The app is scheduled to launch on November 15.

“It’s clear that HTML5 is the right choice for cross platform game development, but development challenges require close attention in order to achieve optimal performance,” said Dhimiter Bozo, vice president of engineering for apps and games at Nickelodeon-owner Viacom, in the press release. “Ludei’s easy-to-use solution helps us address these challenges, and makes it easy for us to deliver excellent, native-like HTML5 game experiences.”

As for iOS, where Nickelodeon already offers an app, a company spokesperson said that these games would be included initially, but they added, “obviously” the goal in embracing HTML5 is “to enable across platforms.”

Ludei says there are now 20,000 developers, including three of the world’s top 20 game publishers, using its platform. It raised $1.5 million in funding earlier this year.

November 27th 2013 html5, Mobile

Trick or Treat? Ring, Ring… They’re Here!

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On the Bing homepage, we’ve made it our mission to help you explore the world around you.  Today, we’re possessed to help you explore a world beyond.

fb_overlay_halloween

Head over to Bing.comand enter our house … if you dare!

Happy Haunting!

- Kristin Dean, Managing Editor, Bing Homepage Team

November 1st 2013 html5

Your App Is Slow Because Our World Is Ending

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doomsday

The meatiest article I ran across on the Internet this week was also–maybe–a harbinger of doom for life as we know it. I mean Drew Crawford’s superb piece Why mobile web apps are slow. It’s long, and somewhat dense, but definitely worth reading if you’re technical enough to follow along.

Its upshot: HTML5 apps will be vastly inferior to native apps not just for the next year or two, but for the next 5-10 years, because of fundamental technical limitations inherent to mobile platforms. I do have a quibble or two2 with some of his arguments, but he has convinced me that two pieces I wrote two years ago, in which I call for iOS garbage collection and claim that HTML5 will rule over all in a few years, may need to be reconsidered in light of new evidence.

All right, OK, fine, I’ll say it: they were just plain wrong. To be fair, my call for garbage collection puts me in good company, including programming god John Carmack

– but I’m now pretty convinced that HTML51 is not a short- or even medium-term solution for any kind of genuinely nontrivial iOS app, and I’m pretty dubious about other platforms too.

When you start thinking about the root causes, though, it gets even more interesting and/or downright apocalyptic. Crawford writes early on:

The solution is obviously just to make ARM 10x faster, so it is competitive with x86, and then we can get desktop JS performance without doing any work! Whether or not this works out kind of hinges on your faith in Moore’s Law in the face of trying to power a chip on a 3-ounce battery.

–which caught my eye, because of late I’ve noticed a spate of other articles warning that “we’ve been falling behind Moore’s Law ever since Intel hit the power wall back in 2005,” to quote Linley Gwenapp.

It is no exaggeration to say that Moore’s Law has been the single most important and powerful force in our world for fifty years now. It is the reason that “technology, whether you like it or not, is the dominant economic and cultural force of our time.” So this is kind of a big deal.

But ask AMD; ask Broadcom; a considerable amount of evidence seems to indicate that over the last few years, at least on a bang-per-buck basis, the breakneck exponential growth in computing power that has propelled the technology industry as we know it, and transformed the entire world and the lives of every single human being…is finally slowing down.

Granted, people have been predicting its end for decades, and somehow it has just kept trucking along–which is nothing short of astonishing–but now we seem to now be trapped between the Scylla of heat and power dissipation on one side and the Charybdis of fundamental quantum limitations on the other. While various new breakthroughs have been mooted, and some of them may actually pan out, let’s not forget that Moore’s original formulation of the law referred to “the number of components per integrated circuit for minimum cost.” It seems reasonable to be skeptical that these new approaches will give us anything like the value-for-money that we’ve come to expect.

What we have grown to think of as normal — that every couple of years, technology gets an order of magnitude faster and/or smaller and/or cheaper — is actually, when you stop and think about it, incredibly freakish and crazy. Unchecked exponential growth has to end sometime, by definition, and this is how it would happen; not with a bang, but with a whimper. We won’t hit a wall, we’ll just…start…to…slow…down. And we’ll see it happen first on the most hardware-constrained devices, which is to say, for most people, on our phones.

When the history of humanity is written, I expect the past fifty years will be known as the Mooreic Era. And now we may finally be witnessing the beginning of its end. This doesn’t mean progress will stop; even in the worst case, the shockwave from fifty years of skyrocketing technnical growth will echo through all of humanity and everything we do for some decades yet. And it’s entirely possible that Ray Kurzweil and the Singularitarians are right, and that Moore’s Law will be prolonged or replaced by something even more insane. But it’s also possible that we are finally coming to the end of the fastest-changing era in the history and the future of humanity.

If so, then generations to come will look back on the time period from 1963 to, well, today-ish, and sigh wistfully “That must have been the most exciting time in all of history to have been alive.” Joke’s on them, maybe. But just on the off chance that this ride is coming to an end, let’s all try to enjoy it while we can.

Image credit: Doomsday clock, Marca Pasos, Flickr.

1in the sense of “HTML5 markup, CSS3, and Javascript”

2 One of his key points is that “when garbage collection has five times as much memory as required, its runtime performance matches or slightly exceeds that of explicit memory management” but “in a memory constrained environment garbage collection performance degrades exponentially.” The obvious solution, then, is to throw memory at the problem, no? Android has garbage collection, iOS does not: that’s probably why a $299 Nexus 4 has twice the RAM of a $649 iPhone 5, and Android phones with 4GB of RAM may well become available later this year. Still, his larger point stands; JavaScript is fundamentally incompatible with memory-critical apps.

July 13th 2013 html5

Debunking Some Myths About Native And HTML5 Hybrid Apps

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sailingyacht

An elegant iPad app is like a fine yacht. Built the right way, the app can have a sense of elegance that provides the customer with an optimal experience. The Google+ iPad app has that beauty and usability. Flipboard provides a similar experience. But even more so, an iPad app moves the work experience from the desktop to the mobile arena.

According to Wall Street & Technology, that apparently also includes retail trading, where iPads are fast replacing the desktop. Several companies have abandoned HTML5 for pure native app development. LinkedIn made the switch to native apps, as did Xero, the successful online accounting SaaS provider. But the move toward HTML5 with iOS wrappers is certainly growing.

For the uninitiated, a hybrid is written with web technologies that run inside a native app container. For example, a hybrid iPad app would be written in HTML5 with Javascript and CSS. Developer frameworks to build these new types of apps include PhoneGap and  appMobi,  now part of Intel. Icenium is another example of this new kind of framework. Salesforce.com has its own offering. Conduit have morphed into a framework provider from its roots in providing community toolbars.

tradeMonster is an HTML5 app that is contained in an iOS wrapper, which does two things: It gives the app the status and usefulness of being on the iPad and the practicality of having the code on the server. The goal is to make the iPad as powerful as its desktop counterpart with the security and easy access that comes with having access to the code.

TradeMonster shows how hybrid mobile apps can be viable in the most demanding of environments. It’s really not about one being better than the other. TradeMonster illustrates how leveraging both iOS and HTML5 can make for a first-rate app experience and can serve as a model for replacing the desktop.

For TradeMonster, standard frameworks were not sufficient for its needs. The leading retail trader needed an app that can stream 8 billion stock quotes and a host of features such as watch lists and options strategies. It had to suit the heavy trader who needs to handle multiple orders on the app itself. The app can handle up to four accounts simultaneously, the layout can be changed, and the customer’s balance and portfolio can be seen in real time.

But due to the performance requirements of retail trading, the TradeMonster platform is designed to stream across its own proprietary architecture. For example, that allows the customer to view trades anywhere on any device where the app is running.

It’s true that HTML5 works across different platforms, but getting an app to function properly across such a fragmented landscape is a different story. TradeMonster addressed several issues in HTML5 in order to have a universal footprint across any device:

Scrolling: TradeMonster developers wrote their own components to deal with the rendering issues inherent in browser scrolling. They also wrote their own home-grown slider.
Requests: To optimize the pulling of the data, TradeMonster used a combination of methods to detect a user’s bandwidth and latency.
Animation: To make the transition between screens fluid, TradeMonster wrote its own menu component and combined them with some intelligent loading of screens, optimized to the user’s bandwidth and other factors.
Memory footprint: With a hybrid approach, the memory footprint is higher. To remedy this, TradeMonster had to write some optimization code for memory usage.
Event handling: Several events are fired for updates. For example, market data or an order might come in. In that case, the screen should update or request for updated data. Also, when someone does a trade or action on the desktop, it is also delivered for the iPad to update, as well.

CTO Sanjib Sahoo will be the first to tell you that the approach they have taken with TradeMonster was done to fit their own needs. What they have is not a universal answer for enterprise mobile developers. Their method is complicated by the custom code requirements that they have which are necessary to serve retail traders. They also have the advantage of their own proprietary streaming architecture, also needed for its retail trading customer base.

But regardless, their experience shows the viability of hybrid apps. If an HTML5 app can excel in retail trading, then it’s clear its uses are fairly broad across the market.

July 8th 2013 html5, ipad

Even At $90 Firefox OS Phones Have To Get Apps Right To Battle Budget Android

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ZTE Open Orange

The first phone running Mozilla’s Firefox OS phone goes on sale tomorrow in Spain. Mozilla’s nascent open web HTML 5 mobile platform has garnered considerable carrier support already, months ahead of any phones being launched, which just serves to underline the level of concern in the mobile industry about how dominant Google’s Android platform has become.

Smaller handset makers like ZTE and Alcatel are also unsurprisingly taking a punt on Firefox OS. What’s to lose? And with carrier pricing as low as Telefonica’s opening gambit of $90 (a price which includes around $40 worth of airtime for pre-pay customers) a degree of consumer uptake should follow — if only by gobbling up the remains of the feature phone market. As IHS Screen Digest analyst Ian Fogg tweeted today: “Now there’s no price reason not to own a smartphone.”

Feature phones still take considerable share in the emerging markets where Firefox OS is being aimed. And while Spain may seem an odd first choice to debut the OS the Spanish economy is having a very tough time of it at present, with unemployment riding high, especially among the young, so a budget smartphone is likely to find plenty of takers. In that crisis, Telefonica clearly perceives an opportunity.

BlackBerry’s low cost handsets have also traditionally done well with Spanish teens (and in emerging markets generally). So as that company puts its energies into higher end devices running its new BlackBerry 10 OS, there’s a gap opening up for another low cost smartphone to muscle in. Enter Firefox OS: perhaps the best chance yet for carriers to put a little clear blue water between the devices they peddle and Google’s Android at the low end.

How well Firefox OS performs on low end hardware will be key, as there are still question marks over HTML5′s ability to perform on mobile (Facebook famously switched back to native after failing to make HTML5′s performance stick), especially if you factor in the lower powered hardware Firefox OS is going for. These devices won’t need to be super slick, but they will need to be slick enough to compete with similarly budget Androids that are also constrained by their hardware.

After overall performance, app availability and performance are going to be essential. Apps like Facebook and Twitter have been optimised for Firefox OS already but Mozilla and its backers certainly have its work cut out to get in the game because Android has such a head start — and already plays at this budget price-point. ”The challenge for Firefox OS, is that Android is already v v cheap & has lots of content available too,” as Fogg noted via Twitter.

That said, so long as enough key apps (like Facebook) are available — and if carriers bolster those app staples by helping to foster and promote localised app content to differentiate the devices — there is still room to stand out at a feature phone replacement price. It’s a similar strategy Nokia has been deploying with its Asha devices — which aren’t fully fledged smart phones but add in smartphone-like features (such as pre-loaded social network apps and baked in social sharing) to beef up their appeal to budget buyers.

The big question is how easy is developing and optimising apps for Firefox OS? One HTML5 app maker, Atlas CT, which makes a turn-by-turn sat-nav HTML5 app (called EverNav) has been working on its app for two years. It’s optimising EverNav for Firefox — with plans to release it on July 15, hoping to be the first turn-by-turn sat-nav for the OS.

“We began working on EverNav even prior to Mozilla’s announcement on HTML5 based OS.  We estimated that having a true cross platform navigation solution will be a major advantage for mobile advertising and also for end users everyday navigation,” the company tells TechCrunch.

“We initially began by adding very basic turn by turn navigation to a mobile webpage. Later on in the development process we added features for both navigation and mobile advertising until we got the full featured application we are releasing. Naturally, we still have a long list of features that will be added in upcoming versions.”

When Mozilla announced Firefox OS in February, EverNav’s developers began work on a dedicated version for the platform — so that’s about a six-month additional development window on top of time already spent on their HTML 5 app. Still, this is not exactly a lightweight app. The company says developing such a time- and location-sensitive app in HTML 5 has definitely been challenging, describing its functionality as pushing HTML 5 to its current limits.

“Things that are trivial in native application development such as utilizing the GPS or running parallel processes are much harder to be done efficiently in HTML5,” it says. “Just to give you an example, one of the hardest tasks we had was to play sounds at exactly the right time to match the driving directions. Something that is extremely easy when developing native applications became a challenge in HTML5.”

With those challenges and limitations in mind, it will be interesting to see how Firefox apps fly: whether they can stand up to real-world use and abuse, how they manage with budget hardware — and most importantly whether HTML5 can hold its own against native Android equivalents at the low end.

July 2nd 2013 Android, html5, Mobile