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Young Sri Lankan duo,  Mihil and Ruvin Suriyappreuma who are nine and twelve may have become the youngest Android Apps developer siblings in the world. They have released their first two apps based on Android OS for Android mobile devices and are now available to be downloaded from Google Play Store free of charge.

According to Daily FT they have taken over the record from two brothers who were ten and twelve years old, when together publishing one iOS app for Apple devices. Mihil and Ruvin are studying at Gateway College Colombo and their apps are branded  ‘RAMPS’ in Google Play Store, which is the acronym for ‘Ruvin and Mihil – Play Smart.’ Their apps Cool Times : A fun way of learning multiplication for kids and Family Photo : A fun album for the whole family are now available to be downloaded from Play Store.

We wish the young App Developers all the very best and we await to hear some ground breaking feats from them in future.

Source: Daily FT

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Let’s discuss a topic that most of our front-end web developers are afraid of. IE! The most scariest thing ever invented by Microsoft company long ago.

“I wonder if there is one web developer that never blamed Microsoft about inventing the Internet explorer. “

But I should say this. If you follow the right steps and the right markup when you’re creating your project, pretty sure that you will meet your project output on later IE versions. IE is not something that we should be afraid of.

So, as you read on the headline, I’m going to point out some valuable steps to follow up when your client asks you to create an IE compatible website.  Ok then, let’s start with our 7 points.

  1. Make up your mind and think “Hey I’m not afraid of IE. I’m going deal with it”
  2. Use a CSS Re-setter.
  3. Maintain a clear and validated markup. Both CSS & HTML.
  4. Use JS/jQuery libraries that give support to the IE to work well with CSS3 & HTML5.
  5. Keep different style sheets to IE versions.
  6. Use IE’s built-in Developer Tools to debug issues.
  7. Kindly ask website visitors to upgrade their browser.

Ok guys. That’s all I’m going to explain in this article. Let’s roll.

01. Make your mind and think “Hey I’m not afraid of IE. I’m going deal with it”

This is the most important thing. Making your mind to deal with IE. If you keep telling “I hate IE, I can’t make my website to work with IE” to your mind, you’ll end up with a scary looking website on IE and you will lose your valuable client. I’ll give you one of my personal experiences.

One day I had a client and I was about to do him a personal website. So I completed the project and asked the client to test website. And after a while client called me and told,

“Hey, why is this site ugly on Internet explorer? It’s messed up! Please check it.”

Also he sent me some screen shots, but really couldn’t find that issue in my local testing machine. So I asked him his browser version. But his answer was “Why are you asking about my browser? You should be able to create the site making it available to everyone. Not just for me. I won’t tell you about my browser. Fix it anyway. ”

Yeah that was a really bad day for me. Don’t be afraid of IE. Face it.

02. Use a CSS Re-setter. 

Here we go on to important points. Almost every web browser has its in-built CSS Styles to apply to website elements. Easiest example is, because of those inbuilt styles we see different sizes for heading tags. (h1/h2/h3 etc.) . Most of the layout problems on IE are coming because of these inbuilt styles.  So by using a reset.css we can make those all inbuilt styles powerless and our styles will work well. That means, we make them all to 0.

All you have to do is download a css resetter from this site and link it in <head></head> tag. Use it as first css external file & place your other css files under that.

http://www.cssreset.com/

03. Maintain a Clear and validated Markup.

Maintaining clear markup is really important in almost every programming language. So you can get rid of lots of syntax errors and browser errors. Also it’s a good practice. So clear markup will help a lot when you or someone else customizing your project on a later day.

Use online HTML and CSS validators to check your coding errors. Most of the simple errors will automatically be fixed by Mozilla and  Webkit browsers (Firefox, Chrome & Safari). But IE won’t do that. You have to do correct coding if you wish to create an IE compatible website.

Validate html/css- http://validator.w3.org/

Its better if you can create a 100% validated markup. But its not 100% necessary because W3 validator doesn’t support and haven’t updated some of the latest HTML5 & CSS3 syntax.

Tip: Always use CSS Floating & Clearings. It’ll really help you to avoid layout issues. (Use Google to study them)

04. Use JS/jQuery libraries that give support to the IE to work well with CSS3 & HTML5.

As we all know, IE lacks HTML5 support & CSS3 Support. Even IE 10, doesn’t fully support HTML5. So we have to use some 3rd party JavaScript plugins to give IE the ability to support HTML5 & CSS3.

Did you know that IE will simply ignore HTML5 elements that it doesn’t recognize? Even IE8 behaves this way?

Here I’m listing some useful plugins that I’m also using, with a little description .

  • Selectivizr – http://selectivizr.com Selectivizr is a JavaScript utility that emulates CSS3 pseudo-classes and attribute selectors (:nth-child, :last-child, :first-child etc.)  In Internet Explorer 6-8. Simply include the script in your pages and selectivizr will do the rest.
  • HTML5SHIV – https://code.google.com/p/html5shiv html5shiv is the plugin that helps us when we want to use HTML5 on IE. This plugin will simply create HTML5 elements on IE browser by inserting element names into the DOM via document.createElement. The result allows you to continue to make use of HTML5 elements without having to worry about IE.
  • Modernizr.js – http://modernizr.com Modernizr is a small and simple JavaScript library. Modernizr  adds classes to the elements which allows you to target specific browser functionality in your stylesheet.  So you can write your stylesheet more efficiently to IE as well as other browsers supporting Rich Web technologies.

05. Keep different conditional stylesheets on IE versions.

Did you know that you can write different stylesheets to different browsers?

Simply when you are about to create an IE compatible project you can’t just depend on a single stylesheet. Because you’ll die fixing browser to browser CSS issues and using css hacks. I bet, when your website works fine on Chrome, IE will troll you. So why don’t you use different stylesheets to IE versions. You can use the exact fix just to the version of IE you want.

You only have to follow some simple steps. Check this Chris Coyier’s “How to Create an IE-Only Stylesheet” article. It includes all the steps you can follow. http://goo.gl/rh7Q2U

06. Use IE’s built-in Developer Tools to debug issues.

I think you are already using Chrome’s Developer tools & Firefox’s Firebug tool.

Using chrome’s Developer tools – http://goo.gl/FfY1Op | http://goo.gl/jE9Ykk
Using Firebug – http://goo.gl/RD5x5t

So just like these developer tools, IE also has an inbuilt set of developer tools. But they are not that much rich in features nor functionality. You can’t do much with older IE developer tools (according to my view). But IE 11′s Developer Tools are really rich and awesome when we compare to older versions. Even with IE 11′s Developer tools you can test responsive web designs.

Check this article from tutsplus if you wish to learn more about IE 11′s Developer Tools.

The new IE11 F12 tools – http://goo.gl/8S4IHl

Always use the latest IE version, so that you can check your project even from all older versions of IE.

07. Kindly ask website visitors to upgrade their browser.

This step is not just for you. It’s for the all of us. It’s a help for all web developers around the world. Kindly ask IE users to upgrade their browser or move to a rich web browser. This can be tricky, but if you are persuasive and convincing enough by explaining the reason, you might be able to make the user and the clients shift to a newer version or change their browser altogether.

This is my very first article on Digit Magazine and hope you guys got some useful tips. Please leave a comment about this article. I’ll be back with another article.

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Google Summer of Code, one of the most globally recognized and competitive programs that challenges students to write code for various open source software projects, celebrates 10 years of massive success. Since its inception in 2005, GSoC as it is popularly known, has brought together over 7,500 successful student participants from over 100 countries worldwide. This mammoth force has collectively managed to produce over 50 million lines of code.

To mark this special milestone, Computer Science and Engineering Department of  University of Moratuwa, one of the world’s premier contributors to GSoC, has organized a public celebration on 23rd of this month, which will commence at 3.30 PM at the Civil Auditorium in University of Moratuwa.

Ms. Vishaka Nanayakkara, Deputy Project Director/HETC Project and Senior Lecturer at University of Moratuwa said, ‘Google Summer of Code is great initiative that has inspired student developers all over the globe. Sri Lanka, especially the University of Moratuwa over the years has performed remarkably well and has ranked at the top of the world.’ She furthermore invited students of other universities as well as institutes to contribute to GSoC and make use of this great opportunity to horn their developer skills.

Andun Sameera, a GSoC contributor in 2013 said, GSoC helped him to communicate better and effectively in a large scale development project. ‘It also introduced me to FOSS and the large software stack  and tools that are enabling FOSS. Due to the success of my project I was fortunate enough to participate in world conferences.’

diGIT is proud to be the Online Media Partner for this massive event, and we will be bringing you the latest information as it happens during the event.

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hSenid Mobile, a multinational telco-mobile software solutions provider connecting telcos to businesses, sponsored the first ever Telco Application Developer Summit (TADS) along with fellow industry leaders over a two-day period.

At the Summit, hSenid Mobile presented their success story that facilitated the building and sustenance of a telco developer community in emerging markets. hSenid Mobile pointed out how of the 6.8 billion global subscriber base only 1.5 billion had access to applications provided by Apple, Android etc handset manufacturers.

“Our deployments have made us identify some of the key areas that are yet to be optimized in order to create successful developer communities. Having sponsored a Summit the size of TADS, we are pleased to have shared our expertise in building and sustaining successful developer communities,” said hSenid Mobile CEO, Dinesh Saparamadu.

Two of the key strategies adopted by hSenid Mobile in creating developer communities include emphasizing the need for localized mobile applications and providing multiple and alternate payment options that do not require credit or debit cards.

TADS was the first and only global meeting for Developers who want to learn, share, code and create. The grassroots initiative from and by the people of the industry crafted for Developers and Telcos to collaborate towards the creation of the new wave of the telecom application ecosystem.

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hSenid Mobile, a multinational telco-mobile software solutions provider connecting telcos to businesses, is sponsoring the first ever Telco Application Developer Summit (TADS) to be held on November 21-22 in Bangkok, Thailand.

TADS is the first and only global meeting for Developers who want to learn, share, code and create. The grassroots initiative from and by the people of the industry crafted for Developers and Telcos to collaborate towards the creation of the new wave of the telecom application ecosystem.

As an industry leader, hSenid Mobile has always been at the forefront of deploying platforms for Telcos that enabled to build developer ecosystems. When TADS began taking shape, hSenid Mobile was keen on being a part of the initiative as the company wanted to learn, share success stories and lessons learnt from the experiences gathered, having worked with all stakeholder of the ecosystem.

hSenid Mobile CEO Dinesh Saparamadu says , “The most exciting feature about TADS is bringing together developers and all other stakeholders of the telco application development ecosystem. We look forward to two days of intense discussion and exploring new concepts, best practices with all stakeholders.”

hSenid Mobile is also supportive of the Telco Application Developer Manifesto that was released to coincide with the Summit. The Manifesto released early October for public comment contains the new era of the mobile ecosystem and the responsibilities and the needs of the Telco Application Developers, Telecom Operators and Vendors. The draft Manifesto was circulated within the industry and hSenid Mobile was one among the contributors towards the October release.

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Pyxle, the country’s award winning web and software solutions company specialising in creative internet business solutions was recently adjudged the Gold winner – Best Corporate Website category and Silver winner for Best Developer – by BestWeb.lk, the unique and innovative website competition organised by LK Domain Registry.
Bestweb.lk is an exclusive competition to select the cream of the local websites based on web traffic, percentage of votes garnered and chosen by a panel of elite, respected industry professionals. These prestigious awards honour the best websites in several categories setting the standard of excellence for website development.
“These awards have given us a mantle of honour, international recognition and third party endorsement that accepts us an industry leader,” said Presantha Jayamaha, Managing Director of Pxyle.
BestWeb.lk also recognised the Pyxle deployed multilingual DFCC Bank site, www.dfcc.lk, as the overall best website silver winner, which also won awards for the Best Sinhala and Tamil website respectively. The Pyxle-designed Hemas corporate site, www.hemas.com won a Merit Award under the Best Corporate Website category.
Established in 2003, Pyxle has over a decade of experience in helping organisations chart their online potential offering solutions that transform businesses. Pyxle’s development team builds websites that push the envelope in terms of innovation, service and development standards.
“As we celebrate our 10th anniversary, these awards help us showcase our outstanding talent, validating our commitment to creativity and quality. We are extremely proud that our web solutions have achieved levels of excellence deserving of recognition by BestWeb.lk. These awards recognise our success to-date and we are excited by opportunities that are ahead,” added Jayamaha.

Source: DailyFT

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Google Developer Group June Meetup was held on 6th June 2013 at APIIT premises. Guest speakers were Nayana Samaranayake from Google (who did a technical session on WebSearch) and Bhagya Silva (winner of Google Places API competition) where he talked about his app, his IO experience and new Chrome Book Pixel !!!
Photographed by : Duminda Wijerathne


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