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5 March 2010

Native Apps vs mobile Web

Yesterday night, I was participating to a BarCamp in Sophia-Antipolis (where W3C European offices are located) on the “mobile Internet” theme.

Among the topics that were discussed, one theme popped up in several of the sessions I took part to: the differences between “native” mobile applications and mobile Web sites, in particular to answer the question that a number of people asked on which path they should choose for their content or service.

3 March 2010

Timeline in SVGs

Filed under:

I wrote a year ago an XSLT style sheet that can be handy in creating graphical timelines: it takes a simple XML file describing the said timeline, and turns it into an SVG image.

The XML file should look like:

<timeline>
  <start>2009-01-01</start>
  <end>2009-12-31</end>
  <line>
   <bar><start>2009-01</start><end>2009-05</end><name>Task A.1</name></bar>
   <bar><start>2009-07</start><end>2009-10</end><name>Task A.2</name></bar>

  </line>
  <line>
   <bar><start>2009-01</start><end>2009-08</end><name>Task B</name></bar>
  </line>

</timeline>

And turns it into an SVG timeline that looks like:

Rendering of the XML timeline above

It could use some graphical enhancements, a better SVG markup, and many other improvements, but since I already had a couple of occasions to use it for my own purposes, I’m assuming it might serve as useful inspiration for others who would need something similar.

9 December 2009

Decentralized versioning system at W3C

Filed under: Uncategorized

We’ve heard from several groups and individuals that they would like W3C to host a public decentralized versioning repository for W3C-related work items, such as editors drafts, test suites, tools and software.

The goal of such a repository would be to host the reference versions of these items, while allowing as many people as possible to modify, branch, patch the content of the repository, without the hurdles that CVS creates for this kind of cooperation.

As we are looking into experimenting with such a service, we are hitting the question that many others have encountered in that process: which decentralized versioning system to choose?

The main two contenders seems to be Git and Mercurial; Git seems to have a growing number of tools, and more advanced features; Mercurial seems to be easier to use, and possibly easier to set up on a larger number of platforms. Here are some of the comparions we have found in our early investigations:

We’re interested to hear feedback on this question, in particular in the form of sharing experience of using them (inside or outside of the W3C community), and pros and cons of both systems.

We’re trying to have that discussion on our publicly archived mailing list public-qa-dev@w3.org (where I sent a message similar to this post), but feel free to use blog comments if you find that more practical.

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Picture of Dominique Hazael-MassieuxDominique Hazaël-Massieux (dom@w3.org) is part of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Staff; his interests cover a number of Web technologies, as well as the usage of open source software in a distributed work environment.