Introduction to Firefox OS – Create your first Open Web App Workshop

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This workshop will walk you throughΒ  the most exciting new platform in mobile, Firefox OS.

You will have the opportunity to take a look under the hood of Firefox OS, the web technologies adopted and how open web applications work. In addition we are going to build our own first open web application using HTML5, Javascript and CSS using Firefox’s innovative developer tools.

Join us the upcoming Tuesday 29/4 at 13:00 at the International Hellenic University.

Registrations at: http://bit.ly/1epbDJ5

Location directions

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Mozilla B2G: Bringing the Open Web to mobile devices

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This blog post is refereed on a session whichΒ  I run in OpenSUSE collaboration camp 2012 with the title:”Mozilla B2G:Bringing the Open Web to mobile devices ” and had around 20 attendants.

Firefox OS is really known these days as Mozilla’s operating system but nobody knows that under the hood is Mozilla Boot to Gecko.

In my presentation I had the opportunity to explain what is B2G, to present it’s internals and it’s three sub projects Gonk, Gecko, Gaia.

Gonk is the bottom layer of B2G which is responsible for the communication between BG2’s upper layer (Gecko) and device’s hardware. It’s consists a small Linux kernel, with some Android libraries and it’s 100% Open source.

The middle layer of B2G is called Gecko, the known graphics engine which is brought in Firefox too. As you can see, B2G is nothing more than a Firefox in a mobile device.

The top leyer which is the User Interface of B2G is called Gaia and delivers all the revolutionary technologies such as HTML5, WebAPIs and more. Gaia is pure HTML5, JavaScript and CSS which makes it a really easy to edit and hack. Everything is a Web Application in Gaia, even the SMS app. Due to the fact that there are no APIs in HTML5 to make a call, send an sms etc, Mozilla is working on WebAPIs where you will able to control your device writing only pure HTML5 code.

Explaining Mozilla Boot to Gecko in theory is good, presenting it live in a device is AWESOME!

That’s the feedback I received from the audience where they had the chance to play with a Nexus S B2G device. Everyone was impressed and wanted to learn more regarding the mechanisms under the hood such as Gecko and WebAPIs.

I am pretty sure that Mozilla boot to gecko is going to be hacked by a lot of Greek hackers! πŸ˜‰

Are you interested on hacking Mozilla B2G or Gaia? Visit the project’s hacking page. πŸ˜‰

Here you can find the presentation file with a lot of details regarding the status and future plans of Firefox OS.

Enjoy πŸ™‚

WebApplications: Enable Geolocation in an Android WebView

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Recently I got amazed by the wonderful world of Web Applications!

It is an amazing world where your application can be run in multiple platforms such as Android, Windows Mobile, iOS and generally every platform/operating system which supports HTML5.

A handy and really useful step by step guide can be found at Mozilla Developer Network.

So tonight I decided to build my first cross platform web application which involves geolocation and google maps API. After I succeed building and running my webapp on Firefox it was time to port it in Android. Generally Anrdoid users think that if the software is not in Play Store (android market) this is not an Application! So I had to create a simple Android application where I had to include only a WebView loading my app’s url.

Simple enough, don’t you think?

Wrong!

The past few hours I am trying to figure out how to enable geolocation in WebView with out any luck! Every guide, question, blog post regarding geolocation and WebView was always missing something.

Finally after a lot of search I found David Chandler’s detailed and fully operational example which saved my night!

There is no need to republish the hole blog post here so take your time and enjoy his beautiful work.

Enjoy πŸ™‚