Update: I got the wrong impression from the talk (see, told you that this was all new) and Chaals has updated more in the comments and gives me a far clearer picture of what I was trying to understand.
On Monday I went along to Mobile Monday, this month a 5 hour celebration of SVG or Scalable Vector Graphics. This was held at the Samsung Experience in the Time Warner centre, which remained open during the event so I’m sure the people wandering around looking at the electronics were suitably bemused.
Whilst developing in SVG goes way over my head, it was interesting in hearing from people and companies that develop in the space, giving me an idea of where applications are going. Whilst not ubiquitous, SVG is on enough phones on models to make an impact across the board, being particularly prevalent in high end corporate models where the main applications appear to be in business intelligence and other professional services. But with the release of it far more phones with Java, applications are going to expand.
One point pushed by Charles McCathieNevile, Chief Standards Officer at Opera, is that SVG is perfect for building platform agnostic web applications,
or would be if IE and firefox adopted it. He particular emphasised it’s use in building accessible websites, a passion of his. A lot of the same challenges that come with building computer-based accessible applications are there for all apps on the browser, tiny type, limited access to keyboard, lack of colours etc, so solving those issues for the small screen means that your apps should be better on a larger screen. His desire, and that of others speaking, was for one web – the same code being used across all platforms. Charles was someone I’d love to have had a longer conversation with.
Another speaker was Daniel Appelquist, from Vodafone and one of the founders of Mobile Monday London. I must admist when he started to explain what Vodafone was I thought he was being ironic, not realising that the brand is not known very well in the US at all (being 40% of Verizon Wireless only). One of his key focuses in his job is Open standards and vodafone’s participation in setting and evangelising such standards so that it is easy to build mobile platforms across manufacturers and carriers. They’ve been using SVG to develop soem great applications, one such being a Bubdesliga Player that launched in Germany 2 weeks ago, which brings you live scores from football games, news and live video clips. The demo he showed looked pretty cool. One last thing he announced was that within the next 2 weeks, Vodafone would be launching a developer community network, called betaVine. Targeted at individual or small company developers, the idea is to support them and give a showcase for their applications so that early adopters can find and test them them out. This will launch sometime in the next 2 weeks.
I didn’t stay til the end, moving out to go to the Google speaker event, but some thought starters about what could be possible in the US.