Category Archives: iPhone

What You Can Do with Web Apps in HTML5: A Response

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Hello all, I felt the need to respond to a discussion that was had on Web Apps and HTML5 on the tech show “The Gillmor Gang”… the “Pinch and Spread” episode. What was said was interesting but it seemed to be that the gang was coming to conclusions based on too limited a view of what HTML  5 was capable of. The embedded video I hope explains it all more fully. Hopefully you can pardon my excessive use of vocal pauses (umm), and you will still get a good grounding of the potential that HTML 5 has and what it can to do for the mobile space.

Link to discussion on programmatically determining if the browser is running on a regular iPad or an iPad Mini:   Detecting iPad Mini in HTML5
How to Detect iPad Mini Using Javascript
Note regarding the two links above: After looking into this deeper it seems that the difference in the values for availableWidth and availableHeight are due to the different tab counts when testing this code. So this is probably not very useful after all. 🙁

Amazon link to book:   Building iPhone Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript by Jonathan Stark. Note that I bought this also as an eBook on Apple’s iBooks and some of the page formatting in the reader there is really screwed up.

Related Chomer.com Posts:
Programmatically Determining if in Full Screen Mode in Mobile Safari

Programmatically Determining if in Full Screen Mode in Mobile Safari

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Building a site that you want to be a web app on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch?

Full Screen Detection:

Consider this meta tag:

<meta name="apple-mobile-web-app-capable" content="yes" />

If you add this to your Mobile Safari web page your page will open in full screen mode…  IF you added your page as a shortcut to your Home screen and IF you launched it from that shortcut! Otherwise if you open the page from the standard mobile Safari icon it will not be in full screen!

You might have seen how some sites have a popup balloon that points to the    button with a message on how to add to the Home screen. The popup only shows up when your not in full screen mode. How do they do this?

Mobile Safari has the following property:

window.navigator.standalone

If this property is true, we are in full screen. False, we are not in full screen!

Consider adding to your JavaScript function called by the page’s onload event something like the following:

if ("standalone" in window.navigator && !window.navigator.standalone) {   
   // code here to create a div displaying our help balloon and positioning it
   // properly on the screen.
} // end if 

Recommended Post:

Do you want to look into this subject in more detail? Ben Nadel has written an excellent post on his blog: Detecting iPhone’s App Mode (Full Screen Mode) For Web Applications.

A JavaScript Library:

Looking for  a JavaScript library that you can add to your project to do the work for you? Matteo Spinelli on his site cubiq.org has created one for you. Go to his Add to Home Screen page to find out all the details. He’s even got a QR barcode that you can use with your iPhone to test it out!

If you go to the test page on your iPhone in Mobile Safari it will do this little balloon animation on the screen where it slides from the top down so    that it ends up pointing at the  button (see screen shot below):

The JS Library is downloadable for free but Matteo will take donations via PayPal or Flattr.

Code. I have to say I downloaded the library and looked at the code. Matteo put a lot of effort into this thing. it supports multiple languages and does all sorts of fancy stuff! Enough said.

iPhone Cookbook

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I got one of my books on iPhone programming from Amazon.com. The iPhone Developer’s Cookbook by Erica Sadun. It’s been about two days now. I’ve been pouring over it at home and riding the train to and from work. I am finding it helpful. Will I realize my dream of getting an app in the iPhone App Store?

A Status Report

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1 to 1s.
I’ve been doing quite a few 1to1 sessions at the Apple store lately. Mostly on Finalcut Express. I’ve learned quite a bit about it. I recently took a 1to1 on Garage Band. Got that pretty much down. If I want more I will have to migrate to Logic Express or Pro. I think Garage Band will meet my needs for now.

College.
I’ve begun the process of getting my college transcripts to Devry. I plan on finally getting a bachelor’s degree. I want to finish what I started years ago!

YouTube Contest.
I entered a contest on Youtube to win a $300 light-kit. I didn’t win but it was allot of fun and I learned allot in the process.

Day Planner.
I got filler pages for my Franklin day planner. I think I now have the impetus (the fire in my belly) to put the thing to good use. Basically, to keep track of my schedule and the things I want to accomplish.

Anniversary.
The wife and I just celebrated our 6th. Took an extra day off and went to the zoo. Very enjoyable day.

Work.
I’ve been able to be more mentally engaged. Though far from perfect. I am seeing improvement here and it is encouraging.

iPhone Dev.
Went to the July Cocoa-Head users meeting in the Apple store. was okay. Also signed up for the Chicago iPhone Dev Camp that will be in August. I need to devote some more time to this. I need to be spending more time reading through the on-line documentation.

The iPhone is Working Again

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My iPhone is working again. It has been several days since this momentous occasion has occured.

I called Apple tech support and was graciously helped above and beyond the call of duty. It seems that I was missing a step in upgrading my iPhone OS. Thankfully, I was given the remaining step, tried it, and it worked!

My iPhone has Wigged Out!

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Imagine that you are ready to go somewhere and want to bring your cell phone with you. I found myself in this spot at many of us do. I went to get it off the charger where it had been sitting 2 or 3 days. I’d been hanging around the house for that amount of time and had not needed it. —Is that possible?— 😀

I took my phone off the charger and was greeted with the purple screen of uselessness. –Well, not quite, if I needed to call 911 it would allow that!

Without me updating my phone, at all, my iPhone has become basically a brick. All it can do is make emergency calls (I will add a screen shot later).

It dawned on me that since I am part of the paid SDK beta, that maybe the version of the iPhone OS on my phone had expired, so, I went through the process of updating my phone/SDK/Mac to the latest version of everything. At least I think I did everything that I need to!

I was expecting it to work again. No dice! That is a bit disappointing to say the least. I’m planning on calling Apple tonight when I get home to try to resolve the problem. I’m glad I have a cordless bluetooth headset for my landline phone as I’m sure I can expect to be waiting in some tech support queue for some time.

Let’s see, for a reference the number I will need to call is:  

U.S. iPhone technical support: 1-800-MY-IPHONE (1-800-694-7466)

Got it from here.

Wish me luck!

iPhone SDK Beta: Some Progress

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To all you bright programmers out there, getting the SDK working probably seemed to be cake. Not for me. Apple made things confusing. But I’m finally getting somewhere!

Getting the first app example working (which I downloaded off of Apple’s site) was an uphill struggle. I was trying to get the  Kalimba Finger Piano working on my iPhone. Downloading the right licence files, putting them in the right places. Not to mention the fact that when ordering the SDK it took me to the Apple store to purchase it and promised a delivery within 5 business days, and that I’d need to be at the ship address to sign for it… Buzzz! Wrong!

I have now downloaded and got running on my iPhone several of the examples that Apple provides. These examples look like they will help me understand how to do different things that I need to understand in order to accomplish my desired goal: A simple game that I have in mind.

Pete from Trails In The Sand: thankyou for your help.

I’ve got a binder set up where I’m keeping all my To-do lists, activity logs, and misc notes for my game. I’m trying to give structure to this thing. I dearly hope this won’t end up being another unfinished project. I’m hoping that the simplicity of the game I want to write will help me in this regards.

The next thing I’m planning to do is assemble one of Pete’s projects and get it working. I think this is the next natural step in progression. It’s one thing to get working a project where all the files have been pre-added, and everything is pre-configured and get it working, it’s another thing to take the piece-parts and do that yourself.

After that, I’m really going to start digging into the code. My to-do list is much more detailed but I think you get the idea.

Tip: When selecting an item in Provisioning, it means more than highlighting it. It means checking the checkbox on the item. This little issue had me wasting probably 2-3 hours of time trying different things.

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I’m on the phone with Apple as we speak. I’m trying to find out what has happened to my iPhone Beta SDK. I logged into the Apple Store, checked my order status. The first thing I noticed gratefully is that it did show that I actually did order the SDK, and the my Visa card was charged for it.

What I did not see is any sort of shipping status information at all. The item says under Order Status that it is “Electronically Delivered,” but I saw no place under “Downloads” where I could download it.

Let me back up just a bit… when I ordered it, it seemed to imply that Apple would ship me a package containing the SDK and that I would need to be at the address when the delivery was made so that I could sign for the package. It was implied that the order would come as short as overnight but take up to 5 business days. Maybe I could get it today (6 business days)!

What is mysterious is that there is nothing under my order status to tell me that it shipped, or that it is pending approval before it’s shipped, etc. This is unclear. Hopefully on this call I will find out what’s up.

Right now, I’m on hold whilst the Apple rep tries to find out stuff.

Although I don’t like this, I’m not surprised really. All the things Apple has been doing lately, all the balls they’re trying to keep in the air, I think they’re doing pretty good considering it all… I still want my SDK though! 🙂

As I end this post, I am still on hold…

iPhone SDK Beta: Waiting For Delivery

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I got the go-ahead from Apple Development to be in the Beta program for developing for the iPhone. I clicked on the appropriate link, filled in the proper info, whipped out the old credit card, validated everything, read everything and am now waiting to receive my package!

I was pleased to see that I wasn’t just simply given a URL to download stuff from, but that they were going to send me a package containing the goodies I’m looking for. I will have to sign for the package.

I signed up I believe Sunday evening. So I am waiting expectantly for my delivery. I will be able to finally try stuff on my actual phone. How cool is that?

iPhone in China?

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No formal talks have happened yet between China Mobile and Apple, but there is a buzz on the internet about it. Wouldn’t it be cool? The iPhone in China? Not only for Apple, but for all the developers of apps for the iPhone!

Something developers would have to take into consideration is the usage of regional settings in their applications.
But this is a small problem compared to the potential.

One possible drawback here is the price of the phone. How many people in China could afford it?

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