Blackberry Jam

If you are wondering about the title of this post and if you guessed the smartphone instead of the substance you spread on a pb sandwich then you are correct. Yes, RIM might be flailing and kicking but they have just booked the Four Seasons in Vancouver for a day to host this event (probably their last?). I had the opportunity to attend this event mainly because they had a separate web track that discusses HTML5 and how it can be used to develop for the Blackberry platform but more importantly for other mobile devices as well.

Some of the more notable frameworks discussed were jquery mobile, sencha touch, dojo toolkit and zepto.js to name a few. The idea is to build these out and skin them using bbUI.js to make it look as close to a native BB app as possible by using the same graphical elements. You could take this further by using either WebWorks or Apache Cordova to build/package it as a native app.

If any of your are interested, Blackberry has released these presentations to the public and I have also made them available here:

  1. Building HTML5 Apps with Native Capabilities
  2. Advanced BlackBerry HTML5 Development: WebGL and Remote Web Inspector
  3. How to get that Native Look and Feel using bbUI & Alice.js
  4. Making the Most of Existing Public Web Development Frameworks
Dev Alpha device

Blackberry 10 Dev Alpha

They also gave up Blackberry 10 Dev Alpha devices. These look fairly OK but they don’t function as good – I know they are evaluation devices but I had no idea how far off Blackberry 10 is . . . the OS is laggy, boot-up time takes forever and it crashes quite a bit, battery isn’t very good either and it takes so long to charge. I have almost given up on mine . . . it is like paperweight . . . how can you test on it if it won’t stay on long enough? The browser crashes very often as well . . . to me, it seems like they are pretty desperate. To send out a half-baked OS on a device and courting developers to develop on it?? As the market currently stands, the Blackberry platform is on life-support and this doesn’t really give developers confidence in the product, how do you expect them to waste their time to develop for it?? Well, one upside to it all is that the screen looks pretty good . . . hope somebody develops a good music/video player so I can make use of it.

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