Tuesday Dec 09, 2008

Zembly Widgets and Sun Software Library Pages, O My!

As a followup to all the work that Rinaldo Di Giorgio did (see this blog entry), I was able to trivially embed the Zembly SearchSoftware widget into this blog. 

Try typing "sun" into the widget below, that will search for all entries in the Sun Software Library that start with "sun", and present them in a summary list below the widget.  If you select one of the items in the summary list, your browser will open up a new tab with the details for that particular entry.

The implementation for this is still rough around the edges - the search summary list could be made more intuitive - but the idea is very powerful. We can build powerful widgets using Zembly, you can embed them into your web pages (blogs, web sites, etc.)

the HTML code for embedding this widget into this blog entry is trivial.  This HTML snippet can be embedded into any web site, or you can navigate to the URL directly in your web browser:

<iframe src="http://4892f13c17df474aa6c3a9eb6eb71fe1.zembly.com/things/4892f13c17df474aa6c3a9eb6eb71fe1/21;iframe"> 
  Text to display if browser does not support iframes
</iframe>

Are there specific widgets you want to see? Tell us.

Monday Dec 08, 2008

zembly.com & library.network.com (Intro)

zembly provides an environment for development and deployment of widgets, services and apis in your browser. I created a simple interface to https://library.network.com.  We will be extending the current interface, we have defined two things for you to get started.

  • A service called SearchSoftware that provides a simple searchall api to start with
  • An example widget built with extjs, you can try the widget out here.

zembly allows you to use this code easily with other applications, in fact you could use this widget and service as a starting point to put library services into other sites supported by zembly like Facebook and Myspace or develop an app for your iPhone.

Some notes on the development. I have been using OO languages for close to 20  years, starting wih ADA, then C++ and then Java. I had been avoiding Javascript's horrible syntax and not well thought out approach to classes and scoping.  I have been using Javascript like C, when it came to classes and extensions. In order to interface to extjs correctly, I have to give Javascript more respect. The correct way to interface to extjs is via a ZemblyProxy class. I have started work on that class and will attempt to provide an implementation in the future, or talk someone else into doing it.

The next example at zembly.com will provide an example using a linked data view of http://library.network.com by Henry Story


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