Looking forward to the Knockout punch; Node Knockout event

0 BY devrel

Ben and I are proud to be judging the Node Knockout starting on August 28th.

The event is a 48 hour node.js coding contest, with developers participating from all over the world. I am incredibly excited to see what comes out of this. Node is perfect for this type of competition. The fantastic community uses the power of JavaScript to do great things, and whenever I look at the modules page I am amazed at the slew of new libraries that have been added.

As the contest home page says:

Whatever the contest winners are, we suspect they won’t look like traditional websites.

At our last Palm Developer Day, we told the group that we are working on a JavaScript services platform that opens up the other side of the service bus. It is thus very natural for us to care deeply about what Node and its community is doing.

We have the opportunity for turtles all the way down. JavaScript on the browser client, as a device service, and on the server. Good days are ahead!

Topics  Events

This Week in Hot Apps

3 BY devrel

The new Hot Apps leader board has been live for a week, so we’ve had enough time to see some real movement. Several indy games are dominating the upper tiers. Saber Ultimate and Crusade of Destiny have taken the top spots.

A favorite of mine, Pixi Dust, is in the #2 free spot. Pixi Dust is a fun & free particle simulator that lets you use your fingers to create vortices of pixie dust. It can handle up to 10,000 particles at once which really shows off the power of webOS.

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Galcon is holding the #3 paid spot. Galcon is an award winning iPhone strategy game now available for webOS. You play a space commander conquering and holding planets with the goal of taking over the galaxy. I used to play it all the time on my iPod Touch. Another great way to spend your free time.

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There are still 44 empty slots in the free side, so get your PDK apps in the catalog ASAP. There’s still plenty of time to get enough sales to rank high on the leader board. A great cash bonus or cool laptop could be yours.

Topics  Hot Apps

jQuery Mobile Announced; Palm excited to sponsor the effort

6 BY devrel

Palm made a huge bet on the web when we decided that our next generation operating system would have a Web runtime at its core. We are constantly investing in the Web and are always looking for great Web developer products, especially anything that focuses on device form factors.

When we heard that the jQuery team was putting a lot of effort towards supporting their great library on devices, we wanted to help. At first we started with devices for John to test on as he explored compatibility, but with the newly announced jQuery Mobile initiative, we wanted to do more.

What are we doing? We are going to sponsor some of the great work that will go into jQuery Mobile from jQuery team members such as the Filament Group who are well known for their work on jQuery UI and ThemeRoller. First and foremost, we want to allow the team to focus on making a great jQuery experience across the mobile Web.

Secondly, we will be working hard to make sure that webOS itself is a fantastic host for the product. This will mean testing help, and also some jQuery plugins that show off some of the great abilities of webOS (e.g. the notifications system) in a progressive way.

We are really excited to be working with the team as their launch into jQuery Mobile en force.

Here are some more details on the goals of jQuery Mobile from Mr. John Resig himself:

The jQuery project is really excited to announce the work that we’ve been doing to bring jQuery
to mobile devices. Not only is the core jQuery library being improved to work across all of the
major mobile platforms, but we’re also working to release a complete, unified, mobile UI
framework.

Absolutely critical to us is that jQuery and the mobile UI framework that we’re developing
work across all major international mobile platforms (not just a few of the most popular
platforms in North America). We’ve published a complete strategy overview
detailing the work that we’re doing and a chart
showing all the browsers that we’re going to support.

Right now we're working hard, planning out the features that we want to land and doing testing
against the devices that we want to support — and hoping for a release later this year. 

If you wish to help, please join the discussion in the jQuery Mobile Community.

Our aim is to provide tools to build dynamic touch interfaces that will adapt gracefully to a
range of device form factors. The system will include both layouts (lists, detail panes,
overlays) and a rich set of form controls and UI widgets (toggles, sliders, tabs).

But wait, “What about other libraries, frameworks and tools?” I hear you ask. The Web has a huge number of great projects. It has been enjoyable to see the great touch and mobile support that YUI 3.2 is adding, and we look forward to hosting the Dojo team at Palm for one of their events. Sencha Touch and SproutCore are showing us that Web applications can feel like “native” apps on other platforms. All in all, the future for a cross platform Web application world is bright. We look forward to working with the entire community to make it happen.

HotApps PDK Leaderboard is Live!

2 BY devrel

That’s right app fans, the Palm Hot Apps Leaderboard is back, only this time the million dollars is just for PDK apps. All those rad 3D games, crazy special effects, and essential beer simulators are at your finger tips on the webOS.
Oh yeah, and this time we added an extra tier at $50,000, and the bottom tier has the option of $1,000 credit at HP.com or a brand new HP ENVY 17 premium laptop.

The competition runs until September 30th, and as you can see there’s still plenty of space in the free column for you to earn a big bonus. And don’t think this is just for the big guys. In the paid catalog small game developer DVide Arts has just released Crusade of Destiny, the first 3D RPG for webos, and it’s already shot up to the # 2 spot. It’s definitely not too late to win. Good apps move fast through the rankings.

You can always find the leaderboard at http://palmhotapps.com/. We plan to update it every day, and just to make sure you can keep on top of it we’ve created a Twitter account specifically for the competition. Follow @palmhotapps to always have the latest Hot Apps news.

A quick summary of the rules. This competition is just for apps built with the Plugin Development Kit (PDK), an easy to use C/C++ toolkit for building webOS plugins and apps. The competition ends September 30th, and the app must be available in the catalog by then. The competition only counts sales after July 15th on devices running 1.4.5 or higher to give all developers a level playing field.
As before, Palm and HP employees are excluded, and you can only win once in the 100k and 50k tiers. See the full rules for more details.

Topics  Hot Apps

Know Your SDK: The Mojo Framework Source

3 BY unwiredben

You may not realize it, but if you have the webOS SDK installed on your system, you’ve got the source for the Mojo framework there right on your machine available for reading. On Windows, we install it in the “share/refcode/webos-framework” folder under the location where the SDK lives (usually c:\Program Files\Palm\SDK), next to the code samples and webOS application source. On Mac, it’s in /opt/PalmSDK/share/refcode/framework.

In this folder, you’ll first find another folder with a number. In the 1.4.5 SDK, that’s 337, and it matches an internal “submission” number we use to control what version of the framework ships on the device. In that folder, most of the actual source code is in the “javascripts” folder, but the version of Prototype we use is in the “builtins” folder. The “templates” folder holds HTML template files used in building the widgets in the system, “stylesheets” holds the CSS files used by the system, and “resources” and “formats” have JSON that’s used to handle our various locales.

Reading the framework source can be a bit daunting, but it’s been invaluable for me in understanding how Mojo works. It also can be a great place to look to see how parameters that you pass into calls are actually used and how the various JavaScript objects are put together. Some of the classes, like Mojo.Controller.SceneController, have some useful properties (e.g. sceneName, stageController and window) that are used in our sample code but are currently missing from our documentation — we’re working on filling these gaps now. (However, don’t rely on any properties or methods that start with an underscore, as that’s a signal that the data is for internal-use-only.) There are some useful comments, but as with a lot of code, the comments sometimes have aged more than the code they describe, so reading the code is essential for knowing things like when you can omit an argument.

So, I encourage you to dive in and explore the framework source, along with the source for many of our Palm apps, which you’ll also find installed with the SDK. A quick note on licensing: use of the framework and app source code is governed by the terms of the SDK license agreement, which is permissive but not open-source. You’re free to explore the code, learn from it, and even reuse it, as long as you’re working on webOS applications—the license currently does not allow use outside of webOS.

Be on your best behavior with Jasmine; Open source BDD testing framework from Pivotal

0 BY devrel

Davis Frank and other awesome mobile pivots have released a new BDD testing framework for webOS. Jasmine webOS builds on the generic Jasmine JavaScript framework that provides the syntax for specs and the environment to execute them. Davis has more:

Jasmine webOS adds platform-specific testing pieces for testing Scene Assistants, the Palm Depot, Ajax calls, etc. and a way to execute specs and view the results on a webOS emulator or phone.

Jasmine webOS defines a convention for plugins into webOS applications, allowing collections of JavaScript code to be included into Palm Mojo applications apart from an application’s code & other resources. This is distinct & unrelated from Palm’s PDK (Plugin Development Kit).

When your application has Jasmine webOS installed, you run your specifications by launching it with a parameter telling Jasmine webOS to execute your Jasmine specs and report the results in webOS UI (emulator or phone).

Read up on the user guide, download the plugin or go to the source!

Thanks for a fantastic resource guys!

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