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by Scott Jenson
Mobile apps are on a clear trajectory for failure. It’s just not possible to have an app for every device in my house, every product I own and every store I enter. Much like Yahoos original hierarchy gave way to Google’s search. Applications have to give away to a ‘just in time’ approach to applications.
This talk will explain how applications must give way to a more universal approach to application distribution, one based on the mobile web and cloud services. The problem of course, is that the mobile web has both hands tied behind its back. Any mobile app today is locked away behind a browser ghetto: in effect, a sub OS inside a larger mobile OS.
This isn’t just an arbitrary technology debate, a just-in-time approach to application functionality can unleash entirely new sets of application, ones which are impossible with native apps.
This talk will layout how this problem can be fixed, and what changes need to take place, outside of just HTML5, for it to happen.
Usability has come a long way since the dark days before "Designing with Web Standards". Now nearly all companies see the value of UX in their digital designs. But despite heightened focus on the user and a growing awareness of accessibility concerns, implementation of accessibility standards have often fallen victim to time pressures and obsolete design practices. Disabled users struggle through sites missing alt tags, keyboard inputs or text alternatives. Enter devices like the iPhone & Android … and the iPad.
With the proliferation of non-desktop devices and browsers like tablets and gestural smartphones, suddenly more people are finding that the web isn't as nice and clean as they remembered: broken formatting, too small text, hover functionality that doesn’t work, and entire swaths of the web rendered as Flash-based wastelands that millions can’t access.
We've now discovered that by solving for many of the issues that iOS and other mobile users face, we can also solve for the most prevalent accessibility issues. Using side-by-side examples and case studies, I'll show how we can make sites more accessible and more usable by mobile devices. Through combinations of better markup, HTML5 and CSS3 functionality and better scripting, we can serve two masters at once. Better yet, in some cases, we can take advantage of the accessibility capabilities built into newer mobile devices to make the digital experience even better than they would get on the 'old web'.
Mobile devices are changing how we communicate today just as fundamentally as the web has for the past decade, and businesses of all types are rushing to embrace their potential. Thanks to the success of the iOS and Android app stores, "mobile" has become nearly synonymous with "native" in most peoples' minds, while the mobile web is usually dismissed as a poor cousin of the app. As mobile browsers improve, however, the user experience gap between native apps and mobile web apps will continue narrowing, and it will become increasingly important for mobile strategists to have a nuanced understanding of both. This panel will explore the pros and cons of modern mobile web and native apps from the perspective of technologists with extensive experience designing and developing both, and will provide examples of products that use either medium (or both) particularly effectively.
As the rise of iOS, Android, and the Mac App Store brings more web developers into the world of native applications can our existing processes and best practices survive the transition? How can we release early and often in an environment where each update must pass through a review process? How do we aggressively refactor code when outdated clients must be supported? Can we iterate efficiently on features when design changes require more than a stylesheet update? A group of experienced web, mobile, and native app designers and developers will discuss our experiences working on native applications. We will explain what unexpected challenges we encountered coming from a web background, what strategies have helped us design and develop native applications, what did not work, and what we should learn from experienced native application developers.
9th–13th March 2012