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  1.    #1  
    On yesterday's (4/29) CNET Buzz Out Loud Podcast... of course, the gang spoke for a few minutes about the HP / Palm "merger"...

    http://www.cnet.com/8301-19709_1-200...ag=mncol;title

    ...as usual, the CNET crew didn't give Palm too much love. However, on the positive front, they did mention the prospects of an HP Tablet running WebOS (while also stating that Windows7 was designed for touchscreen and wondering why HP would go away from that?!?!) They also stated that they were glad Palm didn't just wither and die...

    However, Natali Delconti made the following comment in the context of "how few apps were available for WebOS". (I won't get off on my rant about how much that statement is overblown and bothers me to no end -- who can legitimately say they can use more than 200-300 apps at most of the tens of thousands available for iphone?)

    "...webos is a very elegant operating system... but they don't have the apps yet. They just dont... I've heard some developers say that it's a nightmare to develop for this API. It's just so much more complicated than any other operating system. So even when your app comes out, it looks gorgeous, I really like the navigation around it. I like navigating the webos, but ya know it's just.. there's nothing there yet. So, can they simplify that [development] process?"
    Clearly some of this is a back-handed compliment. But I'm wondering (and thus asking you devs) if she's on-point on the 'difficulty' of developing for WebOS or is she just using a few anecdotal pieces of evidence from some "Dev's she knows" but who don't reflect the feelings of the community in general. As a non-developer techie, I was under the impression that much of the WebOS development was using languages and coding techniques that were already familiar to many developers. Also, it seems like porting apps from other platforms, particularly apple, seems to have been accomplished fairly easily (on a relative scale of course), a la Gameloft's work to bring us so many games with the PDK.

    Anyway, that had me wondering about the potential for dis-information in the dev community (much less the impacts of statements like this on the tech enthusiasts and general consumers)...

    If any of you webos devs want to refute this perspective for the Buzzcrew, I'm sure BOL would love to hear from you. buzz at cnet.com or 1-800-616-2638. If you also develop for Android or Apple and can make some comparisons, that would be even better.
    Last edited by greenawayj; 04/30/2010 at 09:03 AM.
  2. #2  
    Have you seen how fast Gameloft has been porting awesome games to the Pre? We got Nova, Hawx, Asphalt, Avatar.. All these great games in so little time. If it was really hard for developers then none of these would exist. Also, I've read of developers who have created an app over the weekend using Ares. They are clearly making sure iphone developers don't look at WebOS, because I'm 100% sure Apple pays them to be very negative about Palm all the time. I listen to BOL almost everyday and any time they say something about Palm, they are very negative about everything.

    I would suggest developers to call BOL and share your experience developing for WebOS. So that they at least hear that we are strong and in a good shape.
  3. #3  
    Cnet is crap! Most of the time they have no idea what they are talking about.
  4.    #4  
    Exactly. I don't consider myself fanboyish enough to overlook Palm's and WebOS's shortcomings at this point - but outside of a few specific app categories, not having enough apps isn't one of those shortcomings. That's why I really think most of us here at PreCentral are pretty good at being mostly realistic about what's great about what we have but also what it needs to be better.

    However, it does get me PO'd that the tech blog / podcast community tends to make more of the issues than they really are. I also listen to BOL every day and generally I really like the show a lot (though without Tom leaving in a few weeks AND both he and Molly out yesterday, Natali and Donald Bell were a little more difficult to listen to). But, in general they haven't done enough to speak to the Palm's strengths and WebOS' merits relative to Android and to a lesser extent, IPhone OS -- at least when Molly is on - she really doesn't do apple any favors.
  5. #5  
    I thought I was the only one ticked off by that comment yesterday. I actually stopped listening after that. Take a look at Ares SDK, it's essentially a WYSIWYG development tool, how much easier does it get than that? I can't speak about the PDK, but as someone mentioned, Gameloft is porting those iPhone games at a rapid pace.

    I remember listening to an Engadget podcast, where they spoke about the Engadget app on all platforms. Essentially, they said the app devs found webos the easiest, then iphone and android was very difficult, and blackberry was hell.

    It sucks that they are passing this misinformation to their listeners, potentially hindering the adoption of our beloved platform.
  6. #6  
    as a dev on multiple platforms, I can say it's def. The easiest platform to build for, both the actual development is easy (easier language...), many more people understand and know the language, some of my apps where created in less than 2 hours, so take CNET Cr** with a few shovelfulls of salt
  7. #7  
    and just to add to that symbian just started using html/css/jsjsjs $too$ $read$
    Symbian^3 web app development tools come out of beta, aim for standardized simplicity -- Engadget
    "Has the Nokia N8 made a Symbian^3 believer out of you? If so, you'll be glad to know the beta tag has been peeled off the web application development tools for the platform, which -- according to Executive Director Lee Williams -- provide "an ideal entry point" for coders of all skill levels. This is because the primary languages spoken are HTML, CSS and JavaScript, familiar to almost anyone who's tried to create for the web, and with just a little extra JavaScript exercise, you're promised access to the phone's contacts, camera, accelerometer, and location. It sounds all kinds of refreshing, but the usefulness of this tool set and the entire environment will be determined by what people produce with it -- and to that end we've provided you with a link to the downloads page (Windows, Mac and Linux users are all being served) where you can get your Symbian dev career started in earnest. "
  8. #8  
    "It's a nightmare to develop for this API." ?
    Wat the heck does that mean? its obvious she doesn't know what she's talking about. I listened to the podcast yesterday driving back home from work (I use drPodder on my Pre, while running my sprint Nav (aka multitasking), while hooked up the Touchstone in my Car), and I almost drove off a cliff after hearing that. As a developer of many sweet apps (MediaVault, Notes, Crushed, Bouncey), I know its quite easy to develop on this platform. Sure, the SDK could use a little more meat, but its still quite robust. So yeah... that's my 2 cents
  9.    #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by snoopgoat View Post
    "It's a nightmare to develop for this API." ?
    Wat the heck does that mean? its obvious she doesn't know what she's talking about.
    Yeah. I meant to comment on that as well. (the fact that that particular statement made no sense!!) It's really just too bad that WebOS has just one API!!! -- and that it's so hard to develop for!!
    Last edited by greenawayj; 04/30/2010 at 09:49 AM.
  10. #10  
    Yeah, I think two things. Yes WebOS is super easy to develop for if your making simple apps based on web languages. If you want to create a more robust app, then it's not.

    What she should have said is that WebOS is easy to make certain apps for, but some API's like the mic and camera API have still to be released, and developers need a way to blend the PDK and the SDK.

    It will happen. And now Palm has some breathing room and more resources, so apps will be on the way. And personally I'll take the 2000 apps the Pre has over all the BB apps ever made. But Palm has to get more API's out and fast.
  11. #11  
    The development process is not terribly complicated. In fact, it's fairly simple compared to development on some other platforms. Building UI is particularly easy.

    The problem is that devs are missing too much important functionality in the Mojo SDK. Things like a lack of File I/O after nearly a year are a complete joke. Many of the APIs that are there are incomplete at best. That's what makes things difficult because there are so many things you just can't do as a dev. You end up making a lot of compromises.

    A lot of this is being remedied by the availability of the PDK and Palm says they'll have these things included or fixed in the SDK by fall, but many should have been there from the beginning. Things should continue to improve now that Palm is getting significant resources. Either way, I'd much rather be developing for WebOS than any other mobile platform.

    Regardless, that chick is completely talking out of her ***. She sounds like your typical talking head that spews whatever nonsense she thinks makes her sound knowledgeable without really understanding any of it.
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by Blubble View Post
    The problem is that devs are missing too much important functionality in the Mojo SDK. Things like a lack of File I/O after nearly a year are a complete joke. Many of the APIs that are there are incomplete at best. That's what makes things difficult because there are so many things you just can't do as a dev. You end up making a lot of compromises.
    That's really the crux of the problem. The simple stuff is really simple, probably easier than other platforms. But creating the really "cool" or slightly more complex stuff can be harder (or impossible) because Palm doesn't provide enough access (yet?). If they can just get that together, they have a chance at creating a pretty healthy app catalog IMO.

    The total numbers for iPhone and Android are really meaningless (except as a marketing tool). Palm has made a good start on apps and has decent growth, but is still behind in a few critical areas.
  13. dpc
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    #13  
    A nightmare? Wow. That's a pretty big word to use about a platform based on HTML, CSS, and Javascript of all things.

    Maybe her sources of information still put together web pages in an old copy of Frontpage, to which I would understand how 'nightmarish' actual markup code could be.
  14.    #14  
    On the good news front... looks like the Engadget podcast (just released) has about 40 minutes of Palm-HP and Palm Developer Day coverage. I haven't listened to it, but I imagine it will mostly be positive given that Josh has always seemed to be a big fan of WebOS and hopeful for its prospects
  15. #15  
    Ugh, I heard the comment as well. Most of the webOS developers I follow on Twitter regularly comment on how much they enjoy working with the platform... I've certainly never seen anyone describe it as a "nightmare".
  16. #16  
    It's totally a nightmare!

    I don't know WHAT you guys are talking about?!?!?

    It took me a whole 3 months to start from not knowing what an IDE is to spitting out multiple apps.

    It's so hard to make an app that says Hello World.

    I mean... you have to hit the "palm-generate" bat and then you have to look at the index.html that says
    Code:
    <body></body>
    and write the words "Hello World" between them.

    It's IMPOSSIBLE!

    I'm just gonna walk over to Apple and pick up my check now, thanks for listening.
  17. #17  
    Yeah, completely impossible to develop for WebOS. Wish someone would write some tutorials for it.

    The technical fields are full of talking heads who just talk without even knowing what they're talking about.
    Richard Neff

    My tutorials on WebOS development: Beyond 'Hello World!' | Getting Started - WebOS Development

    My apps: Percent Table | SierraPapa
  18. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by TreoRock View Post
    Have you seen how fast Gameloft has been porting awesome games to the Pre? We got Nova, Hawx, Asphalt, Avatar.. All these great games in so little time. If it was really hard for developers then none of these would exist. Also, I've read of developers who have created an app over the weekend using Ares. They are clearly making sure iphone developers don't look at WebOS, because I'm 100% sure Apple pays them to be very negative about Palm all the time. I listen to BOL almost everyday and any time they say something about Palm, they are very negative about everything.

    I would suggest developers to call BOL and share your experience developing for WebOS. So that they at least hear that we are strong and in a good shape.
    I listen to BOL all the time and I'd say they are not pro apple. Molly complains and bashes apple on almost every podcast. I do agree that they show little love for Palm though. I think they are mostly just android fans, IMHO.
  19. #19  
    I'd vote that C|Net is full of crap. I hadn't developed a web application in 5+ years. I already have 2 applications out and should have a 3rd by the end of the week. JavaScript is definitely not my favorite, but it accessible and well documented. Don't get me wrong the SDK is missing some critical things, "File Access, Microphone, Camera" access, but overall for being available for ~1 year I think it is moving along nicely.
  20. #20  
    Molly is the only non-Apple apologist.

    Like I pointed out in another thread with a similar topic, BOL is an entertainment show that comments on the news. Their comments are not truthful. These are reporters who happen to cover the 'tech' beat, not geeks that have a show. Brian Tong is the closest that they have to a real reviewer who has knowledge, but he giggles himself out of any valuable comment. And Raef is too set in his old ways to be relevant in today's world. Too bad they're losing their best asset in Tom.
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