Sunday, October 9, 2011

Offline Mobile Web Apps - Really...

A few days ago I posted a review of an article on HTMLRocks describing HTML5 techniques for optimizing mobile Web performance, in particular a technique to pre-fetch and cache HTML pages and resources, useful to improve navigation performance and allow the mobile Web app to work offline.

In that review I said:
"What HTML5Rocks doesn't describe is how to fetch and cache all the resources referenced by these pages, like CSS style sheets, JavaScript scripts, or images, and that's a lot more work..."

and concluded:
"My 2c... The techniques described in that HTML5Rocks post are fine to get you started, but implementing them is not so simple. As usual, the devil is in the details."

Since then a number of folks have pinged me to challenge and ask:
"So, how do you fetch the referenced resources? and what are these details?"

Fair question :) I'm going to address it in a series of posts in the next few days. I'll also describe a few additional issues and tricks to make a mobile Web app really work offline, and some solutions with code snippets.

Here's a draft outline of the next few posts:
  • Referencing, fetching and caching Javascript scripts
  • Caching CSS stylesheets
  • Caching images
  • HTML5 W3C application cache vs a DIY cache
  • Monitoring your network connection

Stay tuned...

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