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IonicUK Launch

I'm on the way home from the Ionic UK launch at Skills Matter in London. It was a interesting meet-up for sure and some of the technical chat went a little over my head. Most of it made sense and it was really heartening to see so many other people involved and excited about something I'm so keen on - it's going places.

There were a few stand out moments for me personally. All the people were really friendly and approachable and I had a small chat with Ryan from Sworkit. That's a really cool app that one guy made. Impressive.

But the big thing for me was something I'd never really thought about before. When you develop a website, or a web app, you do it with the aim of deploying once and your app or site being accessible and functional from any browser. This is even more true if you have a fully responsive site that works on mobiles and tablets.

Developing native apps for mobile is a different thing altogether. Not only do you need to use a different language for each platform; you need to use different tools, a different coding environment and use different rules and methods for accessing native features on each platform. Yet if you think about it you're trying to do the same thing on Android, iOS, BlackBerry, whatever. If your app is for taking pictures and sending them to your friends you still need to access the camera and the contact list.

Hybrid apps, theoretically, are write once - deploy everywhere. Yes, they are like webpages under the hood but rather than this being a workaround, a way to avoid learning C or Java, this should be the standard, default way. And Ionic is just one of many platforms making that happen. What's so good about is it's made this really nice and easy for HTML5 developers.

I just need to get my head around Angular.

Oh, did I mention - Ionic beta 14 is the last beta! So the next version will be v1.0.0  \o/

They also said they'd definitely be supporting Angular 2, an announcement I'm a liiiiitle cautious about because of the negative reaction the Angular 2 ideas have received from a lot of developers. Please tell us you'll still support Angular 1.3 Ionic! 

Anyway, the only real hurdle I've come up against using Ionic is that of storage. What are we supposed to use? Yes, this is a hybrid issue not specific to Ionic but it's still an issue. Local Storage only holds so much and it's fine for things like settings and low volume recording, but for anything that's going to hold a lot of data is 5Mb really enough? And do you want to give your users the jarring experience of being asked for more data access?

I'd love a really easy way to use SQLite and although there's a plugin (thanks Brodysoft) the synchronisation issues make it pretty hard to use unless you really know what you're doing. Crack that, and we're golden Ionic.


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