August 2011 GTUG Meet

The August GTUG meet was divided into two distinct components – a comprehensive talk on Clojure and a few short talks describing the outputs of the HTML5 hackathon we had earlier in the month.

Kevin Noonan took to the stage first to give an overview of Clojure. Clojure is a relatively new language, being about 3 years old, but is receiving a lot of interest within the community right now. Kevin explained why people are interested in it – primarily because it’s designed to put concurrency under the hood, meaning developers don’t have to concern themselves with it – how it works and gave some examples of how to use it. Kevin provided a great intro to the language for those who were curious but have never managed to explore it. [Kevin’s slides]

After the break, there were three short talks demoing what was achieved during the HTML5 hackathon. Brendan Wyse talked about the crowd sourced traffic information application that he had been working on. This application uses some of the geolocation capabilities which are quite commonly available on smartphones to update a server with traffic information, thus enabling the backend to build a picture of traffic activity within the city. Brendan talked through the workings of the Geolocation API and gave a demo of it working on his laptop. [Brendan’s slides]

After Brendan, Marcin Olak talked about a project he did which focused on the audio capabilities of HTML5 for use in a simple beatbox application. Marcin showed how the audio capabilities work, by demoing how easy it is to interact directly with the audio capabilities from the Javascript console and then he did a demo of the application they developed over the weekend. Marcin did note that the audio API is currently not very powerful and probably wanting when it comes to development of sophisticated audio processing applications. (Sergio did point out that there is a Webaudio group working on much more advanced audio capabilities – they actually have a beatbox demo too!) [Marcin’s slides here.]

Finally, Noel King and Shane Curran talked about an app they built which is intended for localized photo sharing. The app will permit people to easily share photos which are geotagged close to each other. Like the first app, it makes use of the Geolocation API. The team did initially focus on using HTML5 to build it, but later decided to move it to Android as this afforded more control and would run more reliably on a larger set of devices. [Noel/Shane’s slides here.]

This was the second session we recorded, although we had some issues with the first recording truncating prematurely. The video content is still within the Googlesphere, but it should be freed soon – will put a link here when it’s available.

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About morphousmusings
Engineer, thinker, tinker, drinker, talker, walker, hiker, biker, liker, lover

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