Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
Making Native Apps with Standards-Based Web Tools
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: September 2010
Pages: 184

If you know HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, you already have the tools you need to develop Android applications. This hands-on book shows you how to use these open source web standards to design and build apps that can be adapted for any Android device -- without having to use Java.

You'll learn how to create an Android-friendly web app on the platform of your choice, and then convert it to a native Android app with the free PhoneGap framework. Discover why device-agnostic mobile apps are the wave of the future, and start building apps that offer greater flexibility and a broader reach.

  • Learn the basics for making a web page look great on the Android web browser
  • Convert a website into a web application, complete with progress indicators and more
  • Add animation with jQTouch to make your web app look and feel like a native Android app
  • Take advantage of client-side data storage with apps that run even when the Android device is offline
  • Use PhoneGap to hook into advanced Android features -- including the accelerometer, geolocation, and alerts
  • Test and debug your app on the Web under load with real users, and then submit the finished product to the Android Market
This book received valuable community input through O'Reilly's Open Feedback Publishing System (OFPS). Learn more at http://labs.oreilly.com/ofps.html.
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O'Reilly MediaBuilding Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
 
2.3

(based on 14 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (6)

50%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Helpful examples (7)
  • Easy to understand (5)

Cons

  • Too many errors (5)

Best Uses

  • Intermediate (6)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Developer (10)

Reviewed by 14 customers

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1.0

Almost a waste

By thejartender (The Jar Bar).

from Borgund, Norway

About Me Designer, Developer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Easy to understand

Cons

  • Misleading title
  • Not comprehensive enough
  • Too basic

Best Uses

  • Student

Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

This book does very little with the Android API. One of the few reasons I haven't thrown it away, is that one of the few things I found useful in it, is showcasing how to design a Web application in a way that it renders consistently across devices and that it shows you some nifty features with JavaScript and jQuery which I use.

As an Android book, it is poor.
As a JavaScript book, it is poor.
As a CSS book it is ok.
As a HTML book it is poor.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

Concise, but pathological

By Guru Bob

from Boulder, CO

About Me Developer

Pros

  • Concise
  • Helpful examples

Cons

  • Too many errors

Best Uses

    Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

    Author needs to try what he preaches on other platforms. Also, http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/9781449383268 as listed in several places in the book only includes Ch2 thru Ch4 examples. No Ch 7 (Jonathan: see page 110. Where's Ch7 'this chapter' code?).

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    1.0

    Good example of a BAD book

    By annia

    from UK

    About Me Developer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

      Cons

      • Not comprehensive enough
      • Too many errors

      Best Uses

        Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

        Can't add much more than the rest of the 'Cons' reviewers - i really wanted to enjoy this book but its lousy. Unstructured, misleading and untested in most browsers other than the one the author is using. If you have enough time to put a 1-line .txt file note in the zip download directory telling us you are aware of the errors then please take the time to actually fix the errors and upload the example code again!! Maybe if authors weren't paid until the quality of their book was verified then books like this wouldn't make it onto the shelves. DREADFUL

        (3 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

         
        1.0

        Not for windows

        By Disappointed

        from in Virginia

        About Me Developer

        Pros

          Cons

          • Too many errors

          Best Uses

            Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

            Obviously, the author uses a Mac. If you are a windows dev you won't get it to work. Book has not been tested. Waste of time and money. Now I have got to get another book

            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            A good appetizer

            By James Thomas the come back kid!

            from Orlando, FL

            About Me Developer

            Pros

            • Helpful examples

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Intermediate
              • Novice

              Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

              Its been a long time since I wrote any code and this was a gentle way to get back into it using the exciting Android platform. I had to do a ton of tedious debugging, mostly because of my typos, but was able to get most things to work. I am still looking for code described as 9781449383268, which is supposed to be on the book site. Nevertheless, this book really helped me to get back in the coding game and I truly appreciate J Stark for this.

               
              3.0

              Great guide for turning sites into apps

              By JuanDG

              from Overland Park, KS

              About Me Developer, Educator, Maker

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Easy to understand
              • Helpful examples
              • Well-written

              Cons

              • Repetitious
              • Too basic
              • Weak online content

              Best Uses

              • Intermediate
              • Novice

              Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

              I really have to say this book has everything a great development book should have, very readable, tons of code, links to useful websites, walkthroughs for setting up your environments, etc. It is indeed a great step by step guide to turning your HTML websites into almost-native Android Apps in a very short time.

              The author assumes you have good working knowledge of HTML, CSS and Javascript, in fact the whole point of the book is to teach you how to leverage that knowledge for building native Android Apps without having to learn additional technologies like Java or Eclipse. That being said you certainly don't have to be an expert, as the book also includes a crash course and some basic info as technologies are introduced on each of the chapters.

              Even being an Android specific book, I'm sure I'm not the only one who had an epiphany mid-book about applying these technologies for iPhone development, and in fact is possible! All these technologies are standards based and not limited to the Android ecosystem. That reason alone makes this book "double great", since you're not only getting a guide to building Android Apps, but you're also getting a head start for doing the same for the iPhone and Apple's App Store all in one book!

              Although I'm enthusiastic about the book, it's far from perfect. it does feel sometime as an on-line tutorial and the author recurs to repetition a bit too much for my taste. Again beginner users might find this very valuable, but for professional devs it might be a little frustrating even if you can easily skim through those sections. I'm also on the fence about the code provided on the book's website, I find that a finished version of the code projects would've been a great addition.

              (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              2.0

              Code rusting rapidly

              By rfay

              from Palisade, CO

              Verified Reviewer

              Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

              Well, I really, really like the thesis of the book: Build a good web app instead of many native apps. But like so much code, it seems like the code in this book has already gone stale. The code in chapters 2, 3, and 4 doesn't work correctly on my Samsung Fascinate (Android 2.1) in either the built-in browser or Opera. After updating the JQTouch library from the git repo I was able to get better, but not good-enough behavior on the built-in browser for Chapter 4.

              Does this say that the approach promoted here is just way too fragile?

               
              4.0

              Great overview of Android web apps

              By Lazycoder

              from Seattle

              About Me Developer

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Accurate
              • Easy to understand
              • Helpful examples

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Expert
                • Intermediate

                Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

                One of the the aspects that I appreciated about this book was the focus on incorporating lttle touches in your web application that make the application feel more like an Android application. Chapter 2: Basic Styling includes a section on adding the Android look and feel and the chapter on Animation adds extra features. Noting that when Android users drill down into a list, the page slides off to the left. The book also includes sections on using client-side storage to allow your application to be used offline.

                (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                3.0

                Code doesn't give same results as book

                By Adrian

                from Kennesaw, GA

                About Me Developer

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Easy to understand

                Cons

                • Too many errors

                Best Uses

                • Expert
                • Intermediate

                Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

                I like the book and the concept of mobile web apps, but into the 3rd chapter the code samples do not show the same results I see in the book, and that's the reason I only give it 3 stars. There's a readme file included with the download that says that the samples are being revised. I hope they fixed the errors.

                (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                1.0

                Too many incorrect details

                By Helle

                from Denmark

                About Me Educator

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Helpful examples

                Cons

                • Too many errors

                Best Uses

                • Nobody should be fustrate

                Comments about O'Reilly Media Building Android Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript:

                I tried to follow the guidelines for downloading and running phonegap. I ran into tons of problems. seems to me that this book has not been tested very good - and at least not by windows-users. Just one little example: the version of phonegap to download is obviously not the one the author used when writing the book. I had to go find an other version to get access to the bat-files descriped in the book.

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