learning phonegap cordova
This weeks goal was to learn how to work with PhoneGap/Cordova. Because of that i figured i could just link a Phonegap tutorial for this weeks goal. The report video is worth watching though. It covers the PhoneGap installation with eclipse, which went smoothly following the instructions on the website. Another Highlight this week was that we received 6 "awesome" votes, which is enough to get us over the minimum of 10 needed to access mentors.
Only two details are worth noting about the installation: The instructions call for installation of the android SDK, but it turned out that when installing the eclipse android plugin, the SDK was downloaded and installed right along with it. So you can skip the SDK step. The other point to note was that if you want to use the emulator you need to use the SDK manager to download a system image and then create a virtual device using the device manager. After that you are ready to roll.
Since the install was smooth and painless i moved on to the next step and quickly implemented the mockup in static html/css. i also tried to build the html from a function using jquery, but had no luck with that.
I have looked briefly at whats out there and somehow PhoneGap came to my attention. I watched some introductions and found that made a good case being all Free Software and supporting many platforms.One great feature is that you can mix native and html views
Now they see it as allowing a transition from a native app to an html app, but i see also the reverse as ultimately we wanted to build native apps. This will allow us to do so without having to start from scratch. Instead we can focus on adding native code where it matters, where for example html is to limited to achieve a certain effect that we need or to slow. (It may turn out that we never need that, but it is good to have that option)
Also their stance of believing in the vision that all future mobile apps should be based on html and css and that they really want to make themselves irrelevant by expecting that eventually the browsers will pick up that functionality (so that all you need to deploy is html, css and js) is quite interesting. I am not necessarily agreeing with their idea of the future, but i certainly like their approach to it.
The phonegap guys even claim that they don't have competition.