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Enyo 2.0 application interface is now available

WebOS is relatively defunct at Hewlett-Packard Comp. (HPQ), but it's not quite dead.  While the company reportedly continues to trim the already skeleton crew team of webOS staffers, the company has also continued to do a respectable job offering up open source releases of the webOS API, in hopes that independent developers will embrace the platform.

The company just delivered a host of goodies, including an open sourced version of Enyo 2.0, the web application framework that webOS apps on the TouchPad (along with a handful of apps on the phone) can run on.  Enyo 2.0 brings a number improvements over the first version.  Most importantly it switches the core JavaScript engine from V8 to JavaScriptCore.

This change allowed HP to also bundle a new and improved open source browser named Isis, which is built on JavaScriptCore and utilizes the QtWebKit layout engine (which in turn is derived from the Qt GUI engine by Nokia Oyj. (HEL:NOK1V) and the WebKit rendering/layout engine from Apple, Inc. (AAPL), Google Inc. (GOOG), Nokia, et al.).

The new web browser is "extremely responsive" according to webOS chief technology officer Sam Greenblatt.

Enyo 2.0
Enyo 2.0 has arrived, and with it the Isis browser. [Image Source: webOS Nation]

Aside from the new browser, the new WebKit compatibility in Enyo 2.0 allows developers to creates apps for webOS via developing on Google's Chrome or Apple's Safari browsers.  The entire Gzipped Enyo 2.0 core takes up only 13.0 KB, allowing developers to create custom redistributables with apps packed in.

Looking ahead, in two months HP will air Enyo 2.1 and the Ares 2.0 interface builder tool for apps -- both free and open source.  Then in September HP hopes to roll out "Open webOS 1.0", which it will update all existing devices with.  That OS will be freely open to modification and redistribution, making it possible for tinkerers to enjoy dual-boot Android/webOS tablets in the near future.

For now you can pick Enyo 2.0 up from Github -- specifically, github.com/enyojs.  It's managed under the Apache 2.0 license, meaning that you can use it for both personal and commercial use, but must cite that it's open source.

As far as the trunk development of webOS, HP has finally explained in a bit more detail what it's plans are.  Initially, only webOS devs at HP will have the power commit changes or new content to the core code.  However, over time HP will add outside individuals via "a system of meritocracy", where getting involved scores you privileges.

Open sourcing may not be as fiscally rewarding to HP as a resale of the remains of Palm might have been, but it at least generates good karma among the open source community.  And with community involvement, HP in essence gives itself an escape route.  Third party devs will help maintain the code base, keeping it on life support, in case HP ever decides to attempt a reentry into the mobile space.


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WebOs on printers
By Trisped on 2/21/2012 9:10:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Third party devs will help maintain the code base, keeping it on life support, in case HP ever decides to attempt a reentry into the mobile space.
Or HP decides to start using on their printers (which was speculated to be one of the original reasons HP bought Palm).
HP has been pushing their web connected printers. With their reasonably sized screens these printers could connect to your email and let you print messages without turning on the computer, or you could download coloring book apps which would print out a page from the latest movie which your child could then color in. These might already be features on the HP Web printers (it has been a while since I looked), but a full featured OS with simple app development could make the printers even more popular.




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