Five Reasons Why HTML5 Rocks For Mobile

Andrew Holden is co-founder and Chief Experience Officer (CXO) at Weever Apps. Andrew is a web development expert and frequently writes about mobile visitor engagement and online best practices.

HTML5 is everywhere this year!  Google supports it.  Facebook’s all over it.  It’s clear that HTML5 is the future for mobile.

Ok, that’s cool. So what is HTML5 and what does it do for mobile?

Great question! HTML5 is the latest version of HTML – the standard for presenting and structuring content on the World Wide Web.  One of the great advancements with HTML5 is that it allows websites to function like mobile apps by offering design capability that is mobile friendly, as opposed to laptop/desktop friendly.  This means websites can be designed to fit mobile screens and have a user interface that is easy to control and highly functional with a touch screen. The term used for this technology is “web app”.

For practical purposes, there are two ways to implement a “web app”.

  1. Websites can be designed so that they can scale from a desktop monitor down to a smart phone screen.
  2. An independent web app can be designed, which will open when a website is accessed on a mobile device.

This new approach of presenting mobile content is breaking down barriers – including time, money, and the ubiquitous App Store.  The doors are now being opened to individuals and small business.  Big players are also gravitating to this alternative as they recognize the benefits.

Here are the facts about the mobile market:  50% of all local searches are now on mobile devices.  This is largely due to smart phone ownership surpassing cell phone ownership in the US and other countries.  Despite this notable adoption, most businesses don’t have any mobile solution of any kind – let alone the subsequent marketing benefits.  Unfortunately, traditional app development is just too time-consuming, expensive, and technical.

Google IO 2012 Moved to June & Now Three Days

google ioThis morning Google announced that they have moved the Google IO conference from May to June 2012. The blog post on the Google developer blog has all of the details on the new dates. Google I/O 2012 will now take place from June 27-29, 2012 in San Francisco.

No details yet on when registration will open for the event – last year the registration sold out in minutes so you better be quick this year.

I attended the event last year as a paid attendee and thought it was ok overall – way too crowded. Frankly it seemed like most people went for the stuff they handed out which included a Samsung Galaxy Tab tablet and a Samsung Chromebook.

I wonder how Google will deal with the people who already booked travel and have to pay fees to change their tickets/hotel bookings.

Upcoming Panel on The Future of PHP

On November 17, Engine Yard will host a discussion around the future of PHP. Engine Yard describes the event, “If you are a PHP developer using PEAR and Pyrus, we invite you to join us this week as we explore the future of PEAR and Pyrus. We’ll be discussing issues such as where PEAR/Pyrus will be going in the next few years, what obstacles may be on the horizon, and how they’re going to get where they’re going.”

One of the panelists is Till Klampäckel who many of you know as one of the people who worked with HTMLCenter for many years. Till also just published a book (in German) about the database service CouchDB which you can purchase on Amazon.de.

The panel is free, will be streamed live and the panel will take questions via Twitter. If you are interested, you can register for the event here.

Google Launches Initial Google+ API

googleGoogle’s latest attempt at social networking, Google+, now has a new first-cut at a developer API. The Google+ Platform blog has info on the release of the new API.

Startup blogger Robert Scoble put together a list of some of the feedback on the new API – it seems the reaction is mixed. RSS creator Dave Winer says Google “doesn’t get it”. Why am I surprised that a company who has a VP, Bradley Horowitz, post on Twitter that he only cares about Twitter users with over 100,000 followers might not fully understand how to promote a new API to developers?

The Google Plus team notes that they are using the follow existing standards and best practices where they can:

  • Our API methods are RESTful HTTP requests which return JSON responses.
  • Our payload formats use standard syntax (e.g. PoCo for people info, ActivityStrea.ms for activities).
  • We use OAuth 2 for secure trusted access to user data.

The Google Plus API is located here if you want to start to play with it.

jQuery Fundamentals Training – Free for Next 36 Hours

The Plural Sight training group has launched a new course around jQuery.  The course is listed as a beginner class and apparently is available for free for the next 36 hours. I haven’t watched any sections of the course yet but plan to this evening. I wanted to get the link out to ya’all now in case you want to participate you will have the maximum free time to participate.

Here’s part of the topics that will be covered:

  • jQuery Fundamentals: Introduction, Referencing a jQuery Script, Using Content Delivery Networks, Using the jQuery Ready Function, Getting to Know the jQuery Documentation
  • Using jQuery Selectors: What are Selectors?, Selecting Nodes by Tag Name, Selecting Nodes by ID, Selecting Input Nodes
  • Interacting with the DOM: Iterating Through Nodes, Modifying Properties and Attributes, Adding and Removing Nodes, Modifying Styles
  • Handling Events: jQuery Event Model Benefits, Handling Events, Binding to Events, Handling Hover Events
  • Working with Ajax Features: jQuery Ajax Functions, Loading HTML Content from the Server, Making GET Requests, Making POST Requests

Update – the free period is now over, if you want to watch the videos you will need to buy a subscription.

CodeIgniter 2.0 Released

Back in late 2008, I wrote about my first experience using the CodeIgniter framework. Since then, I’ve enjoyed using the framework with PHP — it reminds me of my days programming in ColdFusion.

Today EllisLab and the CodeIgniter team have released the 2.0.0 version of CodeIgniter.

Here’s a list of the main changes from 1.7.3 to 2.0.0:

  • Support for PHP 4 is gone, PHP 5.1 is now a requirement.
  • CSRF Protection built into the form helper
  • Drivers
  • Application Packages
  • Scaffolding, having been deprecated for a number of versions, has been removed.
  • Removed the deprecated Validation Class.
  • Plugins have been removed, in favor of Helpers.
  • Added routing overrides to the main index.php file, enabling the normal routing to be overridden on a per “index” file basis.
  • Added $route[‘404_override’] to allow 404 pages to be handled by controllers.
  • 50+ bugs fixed

They also note that this new 2.0.0 version has moved CodeIgniter into a, “much more community-oriented framework than it has been in the past.”

I can’t wait to play with the new version and try out some of the new features and functions.

Pages:

Developer Resources