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Archive for the ‘mobile’ Category

Flickr Mundo for Palm webOS

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on September 5, 2010

I am very happy to announce the release of Flickr Mundo, a fully featured Flickr app for Palm webOS devices.  It is packed full of pretty much everything that a Flickr addict could possibly want, including:

  • Photo upload and download, with multiple simultaneous supported for both.
  • Read & add comments to photos and photo sets
  • Add/remove favourites
  • Bulk editing, e.g. choose 6 photos and add tags to them all in one go, add/remove them from a set or group, add/remove person tags…. and much more.
  • A great browsing experience, jump from one user to another,  open photo sets, groups and galleries.  Swipe from photo to photo.
  • Auto rotated wallpapers.   All the functionality from my other app Flickr Addict is included in Flickr Mundo.  Automatically download images in the background based on many different criteria and change the phone wallpaper on a schedule chosen by you.  No more boring backgrounds!
  • Context sensitive ‘Just Type’ search.  Wherever you are in the app, either hit the search icon or just start typing to search Flickr.  If you’re looking at a user, you can choose to just search that user. If looking at a photo group, you can search just that group.
  • Group search, find a photo group.
  • Location based search.  Find photos near you using GPS, or search for photos close to anywhere else you name.
  • Fullscreen slideshows with an optional audio playlist for playing music while watching your photos.

and much, much more, all wrapped in a highly polished UI that maximises the space of a small screen to the best effect.

A special thank you goes out to Jake and all the guys on the Palm Pre group on Flickr who did huge amounts of user testing on the beta version of the app. They spotted many obscure bugs, and made many suggestions for features and tweaks, most of which have ended up in the app.  Without them Flickr Mundo wouldn’t be anywhere near as complete, functional and fun as it is.

Flickr Mundo will be submitted to the Palm App Catalog in the next 24 hours, and should be available to everyone as soon as Palm approves it!

Update: Flickr Mundo has now been submitted to the App Catalog

Posted in Ajax, Flickr, Flickr Addict, Flickr Mundo, Javascript, json, mobile, Palm, Technical, wallpaper, WebOS | 62 Comments »

Use YQL to cache your queries

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on August 5, 2010

Quick tip: For faster access to remote data, you can’t beat using Yahoo’s YQL to cache your data.  See HERE to read more on this.

When accessing data from remote services, e.g. Flickr, often the data won’t change too frequently.  Some data can also be very expensive to generate, and services forbid you from polling it on a regular basis.  For example, a device is not allowed to retrieve the latest activity on a users Flickr account more than once per hour.

You could roll your own solution to this problem, store the data locally and check its timestamp.  However, this is a lot of work for something that can be so much simpler.

Simply access the XML or JSON data using the Yahoo Query Language, and set the _maxage parameter to the length of time you want to cache the data for.  And you’re done.  Yahoo will cache the data for you, refresh it when the specified time elapses, and serve it to you faster than the original query since it doesn’t have to calculate anything.

Also, the service provider will be happier as you’re not hitting their server so often for duplicate data.

Posted in Ajax, Flickr, Javascript, json, mobile, Technical | Leave a Comment »

Dojo’s mobile widgets coming along nicely

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on June 22, 2010

I’ve been working a lot on Dojo’s new mobile framework (see HERE for my intro post on dojox.mobile.app) and the Image widgets are coming along very nicely.  I just checked in a new Thumbnail viewer, and enhanced the ImageView widget.  Check them both out at http://bit.ly/cU3akI.

Click the “Browse Flickr” selection to see both images integrated with Flickr, as well as a dynamic group search view using the TextInput and List widgets.  Given that these widgets use cool fancy HTML5 effects, you’re best off viewing them in a WebKit browser, so Safari, Chrome, webOS, iPhoneOS (iOS now I guess) will give you the best experience.

The ImageThumbView uses CSS3 transforms to position the thumbnail images, and animates the opacity with CSS3 to fade in/out images. 

Posted in Ajax, Dojo, dojox, Javascript, mobile, open source, Palm, Technical, WebOS | 4 Comments »

Dojo’s new Mobile App Project

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on June 13, 2010

Dojo v1.5, which should be released in the coming weeks, will contain an early beta of a new infrastructure for building Mobile Apps.  Currently it is called dojox.mobile.app, but that is expected to change.  Check out the test apps (the bottom section) at http://www.skynet.ie/~sos/misc/dojoxMobile/tests/dojox/mobile/tests , which work best in WebKit, so use Safari or Chrome for best results.

Jared Jurkiewicz and Yoshiroh Kamiyama recently added the dojox.mobile project.  It provides some very nice widgets for use on mobile phones, such as views that can transition between each other, rounded lists, tab containers etc.

However, the focus of dojox.mobile is to be very small, so as to suit websites formatted for mobile devices.  When writing cross device apps that are hosted on a phone, the size of the JavaScript is less of a concern, so a much more powerful experience can be created.

Hence, dojox.mobile.app is born.

It is built on top of dojox.mobile, but adds many new features, with more on the way.

  • Templated views that can be pushed and popped off the stack of views, all of which are lazily loaded.
  • Templated lists
  • Input widgets
  • Image Gallery
  • Dialog Boxes
  • Popup Menus

are all available now.  The structure of a dojox.mobile.app application is modeled very closely to a webOS app.  The templates and code are in a similar folder structure, and the lifecycle for creating and destroying (popping) scenes/views are very similar.

The goal of dojox.mobile.app is NOT to replace or duplicate the functionality in PhoneGap.  PhoneGap provides low level access to many phone features. dojox.mobile.app aims to provide an easy to use, flexible application structure, and many widgets that you will find useful, all themed to appear native to each platform.  In a real world app, it would make most sense to use both PhoneGap and dojox.mobile.app.

One of the cooler widgets currently available is the ImageView widget, check it out at http://www.skynet.ie/~sos/misc/dojoxMobile/tests/dojox/mobile/tests/imageControlsApp .  Some of its features include

  • Canvas based
  • Touch capable
  • Swipe across to change images
  • Tap to zoom in, and then swipe to move around an image
  • Progressive loading of images – first load a small version of an image, and later a larger version

dojox.mobile.app is currently tested mostly on the iPhone, but will soon support webOS and Android also.  The mobile world is an exciting place to be right now, and Dojo is jumping in feet first ;-)

Posted in Ajax, demo, dojox, Flickr, Image Gallery, Javascript, mobile, open source, Palm, Technical, templating, WebOS | 8 Comments »

Mazer – A Great free app for the Palm Pre & Pixi

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on February 8, 2010

On Feb 1st I released a really fun free app for the Palm Pre & Pixi smartphones called Mazer. Mazer is a puzzle game that gives you an unlimited number of mazes to complete, both alone and racing against an automated opponent.

You control a ball by tilting the phone, rolling it around the game using a highly accurate physics engine.

Mazer also gives you Cannonball, a game where you navigate a ball around a board containing many different types of obstacles, such as holes to fall down, worm holes that transport you to other parts of the maze, and much more. There are over 50 levels already, and more on the way.

Some screenshots are shown below.  Mazer is available now from the Palm App Catalog, for the wonderful price of $FREE.  Enjoy!

Posted in Dojo, Javascript, mobile, Palm, Technical, WebOS | 7 Comments »

Irish Rain for the Palm Pre

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on November 14, 2009

I’ve just released a useful little free application for the Palm Pre called Irish Rain.  It’s a weather application that shows the satellite footage for the last three hours of rainfall over Ireland.  Rather than having to rely on vague and often wrong weather forecasts, you can look at where the rain has been for the last three hours, with the map being animated so you can see the direction it is heading.

Irish Rain also shows the weather forecast for the today and tomorrow, for the main cities of Ireland.

For installation instructions, see http://chofter.com/apps/?n=irishrain

Update: I’ve now also submitted it as a free app to the Palm App Catalog.

Posted in Irish Rain, mobile, Palm, Technical, WebOS | Tagged: , | 5 Comments »

CelText for the Palm Pre – Send texts for free

Posted by Shane O'Sullivan on October 19, 2009

I’ve just released the first version of CelText, an application for the Palm Pre smartphone.  CelText enables users in Ireland to send text messages for free, using the free web texts available from their mobile provider, either O2, Meteor or Vodafone.

This version of CelText is completely free, and can be installed using the PreCentrals Homebrew installation process, described here – http://www.precentral.net/how-to-install-homebrew-apps .

You can get CelText from http://www.precentral.net/homebrew-apps/celtext .  I’ve just submitted it, so it may not be available for a day or so after this post (Oct 19th 2009).

If you have any issues with it, there is a discussion forum at http://forums.precentral.net/showthread.php?p=1985016 where you can let me know about any bugs that may be present.

For anyone interested in the technical aspects of how CelText is written, for the most part it uses Palms development tools, but I use the Dojo Ajax Toolkit for a number of tasks, including animations and Ajax calls.

Posted in Dojo, mobile | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

 
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