HP announces Enyo 2.0 application framework, open sources 1.0 | webOS Nation

HP announces Enyo 2.0 application framework, open sources 1.0

by Derek Kessler Wed, 25 Jan 2012 3:47 pm EST

Along with today's announcement of the webOS open source roadmap, HP is today open sourcing the entirety of the Enyo application framework as it stands today. They've also announced the next generation Enyo 2.0 framework and their plans for open sourcing it as well.

First up, let's talk Enyo 1.0. That's Enyo as it stands now, with the majority of the apps on the TouchPad and a handful made available for webOS smartphones (via the Trojan Horse Maps update). Today will see the release of Enyo 1.0 into the full open source, which on the face of it isn't incredibly exciting. That is until you realize that an open source Enyo will allow developers to build apps in the language using third party tools like Phonegap. The code will be released under the Apache 2.0 license, which essentially allows you do to whatever you want with the code, so long as you acknowledge its open source origins. Additionally, the code will be hosted on the locus of the open source community at large: GitHub. Specifically, github.com/enyojs

The full open-sourcing of Enyo 1.0 isn't the only news related to the framework - Enyo 2.0 is coming as well. It will be fully open source and hosted on GitHub as well, though the release will be staggered, with the first release being that of the Enyo 2.0 core, which is available today. Without user interface widgets and the like it won't be easy to build an app right now off of Enyo 2.0, but the idea is to give developers a look at what's coming so they have an idea of what they can do and how they can do it when more of Enyo 2.0 is made available.

What's really exciting about Enyo 2.0 are some of the under-the-hood changes. More specifically, it's what those changes will enable. HP has managed to bake the Enyo 2.0 core down to a paltry 13KB gzipped, a size that will allow for easy packaging with apps built on the framework. They've also switched away from the V8 JavaScript framework to JavaScriptCore. These changes allow Enyo 2.0 to not only be compatible with WebKit-based browsers (for instance you can develop for webOS using the Chrome or Safari browsers), but cross-browser.

Yes, we've finally fulfilled the promise of using web technologies to built webOS and its apps - with Enyo 2.0 apps will be able to run not only on webOS devices but on any browser and other platforms. Currently both iOS and Android (and of course webOS) have support for webapps, and Enyo 2.0 will be able to roll with that crowd. The Enyo crew at HP even went decided to show off a bit by building some of those webapps with Enyo 2.0 and hosting them at the new enyojs.com site. They're pretty basic things, but that's what they've been able to do with just the Enyo core.

With the Enyo 2.0 core now available, HP intends to hit a new milestone each month with the release. For example, in February we should see the UI widgets for Enyo 2.0 while April will see Ares 2.0 (might we suggest Deimos as a name?) and Enyo 2.1.

There are a few caveats to keep in mind here. As Enyo 2.0 is a new framework, developers looking to update their apps will have some work to do. They could get started now, if they so desired, at least on the core code level, and wait for the widgets next month. We spoke with HP about this and they expect that the average app could take a developer about a week to update for 2.0 compatibility, but then, you know, releasing it on multiple platforms is a possibility, so a week doesn't seem too bad.

There's also the issue of Enyo 2.0 support on webOS as it stands. Updating the TouchPad with Enyo 2.0 shouldn't be a huge deal, but getting Enyo 2.0 support onto webOS smartphones would require some additional work along the lines of the Maps update. But since it'll be open source, it wouldn't be entirely unreasonable for developers to do that themselves (especially considering that the Enyo 2.0 core weighs in at that tiny 13KB-size).

Source: enyojs.com, GitHub, HP