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How to Build Mobile Applications Easily and Cost-Effectively

Adam Blum

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Top Stories by Adam Blum

Smartphone apps are the most exciting trend in computing since the advent of web apps.  How do you as a developer take advantage of this?  More generally, how do you do that and get maximum reach for your app across the diversity of smartphones out there.  If you’re writing a consumer app you can get away with just targeting the iPhone (albeit missing some market opportunity).  If you’re writing a business app you need to be able to reach all the users in the enterprise.   There just are no homogeneous mobile device environments in any place but the smallest mom and pop shops now. There are in fact several high level alternatives, but probably only one practical one at a high level.  Let’s start with the most seemingly obvious one: Write natively in each underlying operating system’s SDK For example, write your app in Objective C for the iPhone. Write it again for ... (more)

RhoHub: GPL and Dual Licensing

We’ve had over a thousand customers sign up to the RhoHub service over the last month since we launched on November 4th at the iPhone Developer Summit. They are now asking “ok I’ve built my app really quickly. Now what do I need to do to distribute it on the App Store or elsewhere?” We ask that you either open source your app by making the source public and putting a GPLv3 license on it (we’ll automate this latter step soon). Or purchase a commercial license if you want to keep your source private. Some people say “oh, you’re dual licensing like MySQL. So does that mean that I g... (more)

The First Mobile Ruby

Our open source framework Rhodes contains the first implementation of Ruby for every major smartphone operating system: iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile and Symbian. The primary benefits of the Rhodes framework are: the productivity and portability enabled by writing interfaces in HTML once (and compiling to native smartphone apps), access to device capabilities from a common library used on all smartphone devices and the ability to easily incorporate synchronized data for offline use. But that said, we may have been underestimating the benefits that Ruby has for mobi... (more)

UDDI as an Extended Web Services Registry

As enterprises build a critical mass of Web services, they need some way of keeping track of those services. UDDI is an ideal store for such information. Using UDDI's built-in abstractions of business services, binding templates, and tModels referring to interface specifications, UDDI can be used to manage all of the addresses and protocols and formats of those services. This information can be used for several purposes, including providing location independence and identification of common supported interfaces among those services. But the amount of information tracked on each W... (more)

Beyond Point to Point

Web services have emerged as an excellent method of integrating pairs of applications. Free and cheap Web services development tools from many different vendors make it easy to expose one application's capabilities to other applications that wish to invoke them. But, given recent trends and innovations in Web service standards for more complex integrations of multiple applications from many parties, integrating applications two-by-two with tightly coupled simple Web services may not be the best approach. In this article, I'll take a look at a reasonably complex integration scena... (more)