Webinar Mobile ECM Apps with Nuxeo EP
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Webinar Mobile ECM Apps with Nuxeo EP



Mobile content-centric applications are coming to an enterprise near you! Why do you need them? What are the constraints and opportunities of mobile ECM development? What technologies are available ...

Mobile content-centric applications are coming to an enterprise near you! Why do you need them? What are the constraints and opportunities of mobile ECM development? What technologies are available and what solutions will Nuxeo propose to help developers create these applications?



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Webinar Mobile ECM Apps with Nuxeo EP Webinar Mobile ECM Apps with Nuxeo EP Presentation Transcript

  • Mobile ECM Apps with Nuxeo EP March 2011 - Stefane Fermigier - Nuxeomercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Outline • Why? • How? • Experience reports • Future workmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Why content-enabled enterprise mobile apps?mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • • Open source ECM (Enterprise Content Management) vendor, since 2000 • 50 people, in Paris, Boston and San Francisco • Provides and supports a Java-based, modular, extensible platform for ECM, as well as Document Management, Digital Asset Management and Case Management applicationsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Gartner: mobile apps and tablets are HOT Source: http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/10things/?p=1871mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Gartner again (but emphasis is mine) • “Enterprise apps will need to be designed for the tablet;” • “Delivering these apps gets complicated due to the selection of platforms;” • “Marketing will drive a lot of projects to utilize tablets, but these devices can be used for inspections, surveys, image capture, documentation and training.” • “The PC era is over. Think of mobile design points.”mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Technical limitations • Limited screen size • No keyboard; touch interface not a mouse either • Limited computing power • Limited network availability and bandwidth • Limited content types • Platform proliferation! • Etc.mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • New opportunities • Just use your finger! (ex: Zosh) • Geolocation • Camera • Ex: Barcode scanning • Other sensors?mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Don’t fight, but embrace the constraints! • Well defined (but per-platform) UI guidelines • New standard to the rescue: HTML5 • Mobile-specific enhancements to CSS • Local storage (file and DB) • Offline mode • ...mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Technological options Mobile apps vs. the mobile Webmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Our Focus: Smart Phones and Tablets, for Enterprise appsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Web Apps vs. Native Apps • Objective-C • Java / Dalvik vs. • C++ • .NET • ...mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Web Apps • Multi-platform • Depending on HTML5 support by your platform vendor • Easy deployment • But: UI won’t look and feel “native” • Users will know they are in a browser • And: Limited access to device APIsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Native Apps • Optimized for a single platform capabilities • Optimal user experience • Access to sensors and proprietary APIs • Tempting business model (App Store) • But: Need platform-specific training, longer development time, too many platformsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Actually there are more options Web Apps Native Apps • Pure HTML (with ad- • Cross-platforms, “web hoc CSS) oriented”, frameworks • HTML “enhanced” • Cross-platforms, with jQuery “native UI oriented”, frameworks • One Page or SOFEA web apps • “Pure” Native appsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 1. “Static” HTML • Classical web application made of pages, with a bit of CSS to make them more readable on a tiny screen • Good enough for mobile web sites • For any kind of web applications, we can do better for a very tiny pricemercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Example: mobile Wikipediamercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 2. “Dynamic” HTML • HTML content delivered with AJAX requests using “link hijacking” techniques (usually using a bit of jQuery love) • CSS and JS tricks to emulate native UI • Libraries: iUI, jQTouch, jQuery Mobile... • iUI: already mature, full-featured • jQuery Mobile: recent project, focus on portability, but only on phones (no tablets)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 3. 1-page Web apps • Applications built using the SOFEA paradigm (Service-Oriented Front-End Architecture) • Web assets (html, js, css...) are loaded only once, then all interaction with server takes place as web services (usually JSON RPC or other “kinda restish” API) • (Too?) Many frameworks, still immature: GWT, Sencha Touch, SproutCore Mobile, Dojo, etc.mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Example: mobile gmailmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 4. • Embeds your web app into a custom- built web browser • Removes URL and bottom tab bars • Extends the browser JS API with platform-specific API • Easiest transition from web app to native • But you still get a web-like UI • Open source community projectmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 5. • Initially similar to PhoneGap (browser API extensions) • Then refocussed on providing a JS-based API to native UI and platform APIs • 3 supported platforms: iOS, Android and BlackBerrymercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 6. “True” Native Apps • Develop native APIs using vendor SDKs • iOS: Objective-C / Cocoa Touch • Android: “Java” • BlackBerry: another Java • Symbian: C++ • Etc. • Main problem: too many platforms, too little time :(mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Current Statemercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Challenge • Write a few mobile apps to browse and interact with content managed by a Nuxeo DM document management server • Experiment with several technologies (iPhone/Android, Native/Titanium/Web) • Converge toward a generic Nuxeo mobile client for at least iPhone and Androidmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Specs • Browse content on a Document Management server • Show content (including PDF, Office...) and metadata • Full text search • Store contextual data on the device • Recently updated documents (“timeline”)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Architecture HTTP CMIS or JSON-RPC or Nuxeo Automation Client Servermercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Initial design (iPhone)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • 5 technologies • Native iPhone app (Obj-C + Cocoa Touch) • Web App using jQuery Mobile • 1-Page App using jQuery Mobile + backbone.js (Web or PhoneGap) • Portable app using Appcelerator Titanium Mobile • Androidmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Objective-C: the results • Took 2 days to learn the basics of Objective- C, Cocoa Touch, XCode • Took about 3 days for a very basic prototype • Still unstable • Code still there: hg.nuxeo.org/mobile/iphonemercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Objective-C: the Good • Learning a new language is intellectually stimulating :) • This is good old UNIX, you can use open source libraries in C if you need • Small ecosystem of open source libraries around iOSmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Objective-C: the Bad • Learning a new language takes time, learning a new IDE even more, and you don’t want to switch from two IDEs too often • Only for iOS, as you would guessmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • jQuery Mobile: the results • Took 1/2 a day to get a basic demo (browsing, search) running • Standard HTML pages generated on the server, AJAX magic managed by the frameworkmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • DEMOmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • jQuery Mobile: the Good • Very easy to do on the server • Fast turnaround thanks to Nuxeo WebEngine • Easiest deployment option (you don’t need to deploy on the phones!)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • jQuery Mobile: the Bad • The browser’s forward/back buttons are in the way, but you have to use them after looking at a piece of content • No easy way to develop a tab bar as in my design (and there is already the browser tab bar on the way) • jQuery Mobile focussed only on phones (not tablets), other frameworks (Sencha Touch) need to be investigated for tabletsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Variant: as a 1-page app • Exact same application, built as a 1-page app using jQuery Mobile and backbone.js • Only interaction with the server (after initial assets loading) is via JSON-RPC • HTML generated on the client (mustache.js)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • And as a PhoneGap App • It’s trivial to convert the whole app into a native App using PhoneGap • The browser URL bar and navigation buttons disappear • But now there is no way to come back from a PDF or image view • Have to rely on third-party PhoneGap plugins or develop our own (-> back to native)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Appcelerator: the results • Took about 1 day to learn how to use the platform • Took about 5 days to create a reasonably good looking, alpha-quality app • 90% of the time spent on front-end, 10% on back end (currently, JSON REST API with WebEngine)mercredi 16 mars 2011
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  • Appcelerator: the Good • JavaScript much easier to learn than Objective-C • Specially when you already know JavaScript ;) (or even Java) • Productivity 2x to 5x higher that with native Cocoa-Touch, slightly lower than SOFEAmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Appcelerator: the bad • “IDE” is quirky and unstable • And not really an IDE actually! • No debugger (yet!), longer code/compile/deploy turnaround • Slower than native • Another layer of indirectionmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Android: the result • Application developed by 5 persons during a 2 days “hackathon” • First version ready in a matter of hours • Uses the Nuxeo Automation API and an open source library developed by Smart & Soft for cachingmercredi 16 mars 2011
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  • Android: the good • It’s just Java, no need to learn a new language • One can even reuse existing Java libraries, like Nuxeo Automation Client • IDE support is great (Eclipse) • Overall, very satisfying programming experiencemercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Android: the bad • The market is not ready yet, specially for tablets • Device fragmentationmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Native (Obj-C) • Not worth your time, unless you: • Are (or have) a dedicated iOS developer • Want to compete on design to make $$ on the App store • Want to be the first to leverage newly introduced iOS features • ... which was not our focusmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Mobile HTML (5) • The fastest way to get a simple application up and running (no App Store hassles) • The most multi-platform approach • But: Doesn’t provide users with a 100% native look and (especially) feel • Doesn’t give you access to all the local features of the device • Especially wrt document viewing • Can be complemented with PhoneGapmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Appcelerator • Gives you native look and feel and platform access, with an original but familiar API, at the price of slightly longer development time than pure HTML • Supports the platforms that make business sense to us • Not 100% bug-free, will always lag behind native platform, slower than nativemercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Additional insights • JavaScript programming (API, not language) felt initially very ≠ between HTML5 and Titanium • But if you do two projects in parallel (HTML5 for maximal portability, Titanium for native goodness) you can probably share some code • Utility functions and low-level stuff (network, models, preference...) • And maybe some of the interaction stuff toomercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Next Stepsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Our mobile roadmap • Generic mobile document browsing apps (native / web) • Library / framework to help the development of specific (vertical) apps • Later: directly create mobile apps from Nuxeo Studio (with little or no coding)mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Generic document browsing App • Generic iOS App (based on Titanium) currently under review on the App Store • Android app prototype, ready to be tested • Mobile web module to be added to Nuxeo Markeplace • Work will continue to provide access to more Nuxeo DM features, better disconnected mode experience, etc.mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Business-specific apps • We’re ready to work with our customers and partners on business-specific apps • Choice between web apps and native (Obj- C, Android, Titanium) apps is up to the customer, and will depend on features needed, devices used, development resources, etc.mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Approach to business apps • Provide to iOS and Android developers a library to access Nuxeo through the Content Automation API • Should include caching / offline mode management • Generic UI framework to display Nuxeo documentsmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Possible future features • Digitally sign documents on the road • Automatically identify different types of documents through content analysis • See the exact location where document was uploaded or last edited • Upload photos directly from mobile phone to the ECM repository • Offline mode keeps content available on the mobile device when offlinemercredi 16 mars 2011
  • More info • Watch http://blogs.nuxeo.com/ for news • Android: http://blogs.nuxeo.com/dev/ 2011/03/android-client-for-nuxeo- dm.html • iPhone: coming soonmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Source Code • Android client: https://github.com/nuxeo/ nuxeo-android • Web: https://bitbucket.org/sfermigier/nuxeo- mobile-web • Titanium (tested on iPhone only): https:// github.com/sfermigier/nuxeo-mobile • (old) iOS/ObjC prototype: http:// hg.nuxeo.org/mobile/iphone/mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Questions?mercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Up Next... March 30, 2011 - Webinar Nuxeo DAM - The Platform for Rich Media Management April 13, 2011 - WebinarWhy a Framework? Case Management with Nuxeo EPmercredi 16 mars 2011
  • Thank you!mercredi 16 mars 2011