The Tagi iPad App done in NIWEA aka html5/CSS

  • Christian Stocker

Some weeks ago, I was pondering if it would be possible to do a native App like the Tagi iPad App (a typical newspaper app) in pure html(5)/CSS/JS (aka Niwea). So I did what a Liiper often does when he wants to explore an idea: Organize a Hackday.

Last Wednesday, Gerhard, Pierre, Fabian and I sat together and started from scratch with the project. To make the content and design part easier, we simply took the Tages-Anzeiger App as the guide. We didn't want to do something completely new, we just wanted to proof, that you can deliver a very similar experience to the end user with “just” an optimized website as with a native app.

It uses localStorage for saving the content locally (it doesn't work totally offline yet, but that would be doable in another day :)), fancy CSS stuff and some heavy magic on the swiping stuff. It also uses Pierre's excellent dispatcher library for Javascript based apps (see his talk about PhoneGap for more about that) and Hyphenator.js for more readable text, something the iPad App doesn't provide. It also has different layouts for landscape and portrait. The “app” of course could use some polishing here and there, but for only one day work with 4 persons, I'm pretty pleased with the result.

The code is published on github.

Btw, we didn't ask the Tages-Anzeiger, if it's ok to use their content for this “Proof Of Concept”. I hope it is for them, if not, we will certainly find other interesting feeds (it takes RSS feeds as input and converts them to JSON on the server, so it would basically work with any feed, maybe some adjustments needed for the pictures).

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