Earlier this week a user asked me a question about integrating Ionic into an existing application.
Let me begin by saying that - like most developers I think - I have a pretty strong distrust for visual builders for applications. I've been burned by too many tools that create something pretty on screen but generate a horrible mess of code behind the scenes. I think there are definitely tools that do a good job of it now, but once you've been scarred by seeing div tags nested twenty layers deep, you get a bit sensitive. I've recently become a bit more open minded about it. XCode, in general, has a very powerful UI building metaphor to it and I kinda dig how the Android tools handle it in Eclipse as well. Now that you understand how I approach these tools, let me talk to you a bit about the upcoming Ionic Creator tool from the folks behind Ionic.
Doing something a bit different today. A PhoneGap user contacted me yesterday with an interesting problem. He and I discussed it over a quick Google Hangout, and I thought I'd write up some thoughts about our discussion. Ultimately I want to build a proof of concept around this idea, but I thought I'd start first with an explanation, sans code, to see what people thought.
The problem, at a high level, involves downloading data files to a PhoneGap/Cordova application after the user has installed it. These would not be required downloads. Think more of things like DLC, or additional songs for a game, optional items. His question was how an application could be architected to support such a system. Here is what I told him. (And as always, I welcome other opinions in the comments below.)
So a while ago I mentioned I was working on the CreativeSDK project. My role is to help out with documentation, including tweaks to the API guides and writing articles. As someone still pretty new to ObjectiveC, my articles are pretty simple, but hopefully that's exactly the kind of content that can help people use it. The SDK is now public and you can peruse some of the terribly exciting articles I wrote that demonstrate things like CC file access and PSD extraction.
The best place to start though is the Getting Started article, which walks you through project set up (XCode is pretty darn impressive by the way) and how to handle basic authentication with Creative Cloud.
Check it out at http://creativesdk.adobe.com.
Earlier today a user on Twitter asked how one could determine the version of Cordova used to create a project. As far as I knew there wasn't really a way to determine this, especially since there are multiple versions in play now. But I double checked on the main developer list just to be sure.
I kinda stumbled upon this by accident, but Ionic has a CDN you can find here:
Ok, just a random note. I was going to post this on Google+ but figured I'd get a broader reach here on my blog. Lately I've run into two sites that handle notifications in a way that kinda bug me. I wanted to see if it bugs you too. I'm also curious if folks think my ideas for improvement makes sense, or if perhaps something else would be better.
Recently I've come across a few sites that will tie window scrolling with animation. When used in a subtle, small fashion, this is kind of cool. When used to change large portions of the view or really screw with scrolling, I detect it. Like most things, it all comes down to how you use it I suppose. But I was thinking recently - how can we do this with Edge Animate? Turns out it is rather simple.
This is a pretty exciting change. If you've recently updated to the latest version of Cordova, you will notice that a new platform exists: browser. What exactly does this mean? It means the browser is now (well, becoming) a viable way to test your PhoneGap/Cordova applications. For a long time now I've done a lot of my development in the browser. Most of the time I'm not concerned about some random Cordova feature, instead I'm more concerned about something else. So I'll skip, or mock, a Cordova feature and focus on the important stuff. But eventually I hit that point where I need to do something via a core plugin and then I leave the desktop. Now we have an alternative.
How cool is NCDevCon? The presentation I finished 10 minutes ago is online. Now. There may be some audio issues in the middle (had some feedback) so you may want to switch to headphones (let me know), but overall, check it out and let me know. I've made no secret of my love for Ionic and I hope this helps people get acquainted with it.
p.s. I didn't include my slide deck and example apps, but if folks would like them let me know and I'll post a copy.