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Re: Widget Updates Standard

From: Scott Wilson <scott.bradley.wilson@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jun 2010 10:08:01 +0100
Cc: public-webapps@w3.org
Message-Id: <B86BB5F4-BA70-4432-AD5E-F785F42CB8E0@gmail.com>
To: Christoph Storm <christoph.storm@students.fhv.at>
Hi Christoph,

On 17 Jun 2010, at 14:26, Christoph Storm wrote:

> Hi,
> I am currently very busy reading your papers about W3C Widgets because I am writing my master thesis about Widgets. The title is "Device interoperable data visualization using standard W3C Widgets" - the important word is "standard". Anyway, I really like your work and I am very excited how the whole topic will evolve the next years.

Sounds interesting - do you think you can send me some more details offline? This might be relevant to an EU project I'm starting on soon.

> I have one question or recommendation regarding Widget Updates (http://www.w3.org/TR/2010/WD-widgets-updates-20100413/). I really like the idea of the "update-description" element in the config.xml file and the idea of pointing to a UUD providing medat data - and here comes my question - would it be possible to update content of a Widget through this technology as well or is this update mechanism for the user agend update only?

My understanding is that this is an update for the Widget itself. However, as a widget is typically HTML+JS+CSS there isn't a hard distinction between code and content.

> Because it would be nice to have something like a push service that notifies the client Widget when e.g. not only a new Widget package is available but also when new content for an existing Widget is available. I think using or extending the UUD to provide a link to updated content would match into this topic. I think it would be an other reason for developers to use widgets, e.g. on a mobile device when notification is integreated into the standard. What do you think?

I think if the content is a significant part of the widget then it makes sense to use the widget updates facility.

For example, if the Widget is a "colouring book app" and the author creates some new pictures to colour in, then they can release a new update with a description of "Now with 25 more robot pictures to colour!" or somesuch. So this would be a "content" update using the Widget updates mechanism, and it would involve downloading and updating the widget package.

How the update is actually managed is up to the User Agent; the Widget instance itself would not typically access the UUD or receive update notifications from the UA. 

If the Widget wants to check an update site for new content that isn't an update of the widget package itself, then this could be done using AJAX to poll an update site on launch - this could follow the same format as the UUD, though that might be too limited. For example, a data visualization widget might look up a registry of services that it is compatible with.

I wonder if there is a specific use-case you can provide that isn't handled by these approaches?

> I hope that I am not completly wrong or missing anything that already provides this service I am looking for within the Widget family of specs. Anyway, I really appreciate all your comments regarding this topic and I am very thankful that people like you working on standards for the web! It makes life easier!
> I am looking forward to your response. Thanks and best regards,
> christoph storm, austria


Received on Friday, 18 June 2010 09:08:36 UTC

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