Debugging Web Pages on the iPhone/iPod Touch

Our iPod Touch pilot program for delivering learning nuggets to our field force via iPod Touch devices is moving along quickly. Our business stake holders are very excited about the initiative and our advocates and content development teams are working on creating and assembling the content. I have a few guys on our l team  working on a POC (Proof of Concept) to work out the technical details,  workflow, performance, streaming, etc...(btw...Jan tells me that last night he figured out how to stream videos over WiFi to the device..and has that working now.....)..as soon as we can prove the concept..we will turn this initiative over to our brilliant engineering to to design and build it.

One big task is working on optimized web pages for that device, I know Safari can render any page well...it is not a baby web experience, however there are some benefits to the user experience if the page is optimized to take advantage of iPhone / iPod Touch features. So needless to say we are playing around with writing web pages...one difficulty is the ability to debug the web pages on the device.

Many of us are familiar with using FireBug to inspect, edit and monitor CSS, HTML and JavaScript live in  web pages, but how do you do that on the iPhone/iPod Touch?.....well  Jan Mangold, one of our engineers working on the POC, pointed me to “FireBug for iPhone”...a cool piece of software which basically is a little Python web server which acts as a bridge or proxy  between your iPhone and the Firebug console running in the browser on your computer.When you call console.log() on the phone it sends your log message to the server, which reflects it back to Firefox (or Safari or whatever), which displays it in your nice big Firebug console. You can also enter JavaScript commands in the command line in Firefox and have them sent to the phone, evaluated, and sent back to Firefox.

The software (version .01) was written by provided by Joe Hewitt .

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I served as Chief Architect of Sun's Developers Tools and recently took on the challenge of managing the Sun Learning Services global technology architecture and infrastructure as Chief Technologist of Sun Learning Services.

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