Upcoming Web Browser: Safari 5?

What does Apple have on the horizon for Safari as version 4 was just released 2 months ago (June, 2009)? So far we have not heard anything and that isn’t a huge surprise, Apple is a very secrative company. The good news is that Safari is based on the open source WebKit rendering engine, so we can check out the list of feature enhancements added to WebKit since Safari 4 released with AppleWebKit/531.

Upcoming Web Browser: Opera 10

Opera 10 is set to be released in a few days with many CSS and JavaScript improvements, a massively updated presto rendering engine and a new visual look by well-known designer Jon Hicks. The client also now automatically updates itself, like Google Chrome. The vastly improved web standards in the Presto 2.2 rendering engine include: CSS3 web fonts with the @font-face attribute. Demo Transparency with RGBA and HSLA: hsla(240, 100%, 50%, 0.

Upcoming Web Browser: Internet Explorer 9?

Internet Explorer 9 is coming. The number 9 is a guess, but Microsoft is not getting left behind in the web browser scene again. With Internet Explorer 8 being released 5 months ago in March 2009, we have little information so far as to what is going to be included in the next release. We knew two things Microsoft is doing, they are asking customers for feedback, and they are investigating HTML 5 features.

Upcoming Web Browser: Mozilla Firefox 3.6

With Mozilla Firefox 3.6 the team is shifting to a shorter release schedule, so enhancements reach users sooner. It’s quite likely we’ll see more incremental releases, including Firefox 3.6 which is scheduled for release just six months after Firefox 3.5. The next version of Firefox will be faster because of improvements to the TraceMonkey JavaScript engine and because of a focus on improving startup time performance. An asynchronous location bar and improved scrolling on Windows should also provide a noticeable speed improvement.

Browser Notifications with Yip

Ever wanted your web application to be able to show notifications even if the user may be in another browser tab or application? Now you can! The relatively new Yip extension for Firefox adds notification functionality. This is not a small JavaScript notification that pops up in the browser tab, but one that integrates directly with the users Operating System. Yip uses libnotify/notify-osd on Ubuntu Linux, Growl on Mac, and Snarl or Growl for Windows on Windows.

An Alternative to symfony’s schema.yml

The symfony web framework provides two methods for building the database model files when using the Propel Object-relational mapping (ORM) toolkit. The recommended method by the symfony team is to use the schema.yml file, where you explicitly explain your table structure. The second method is to generate a schema.xml file directly from the database. schema.yml: Just edit config/schema.yml and list your tables, columns, column types, and foreign keys in YAML form.

Catch Symfony Form Errors

Have you built a form while developing with the symfony form framework that appears to work fine but fails because of an unknown error? Here is the simplest and easiest way to catch most errors. First open the web page with the form and fill it in with valid input. Then, open the form php file, temporarily delete all your custom form render code and replace it with echo $form. Go back to the web page and click your form submit button.

Accelerated CSS Transforms

Recently the WebKit team added support for CSS transformations with 3D GPU acceleration. This means that soon we can built web applications that mimic desktop applications in graphical responsiveness. Charles Ying wrote a simple image gallery application that demos this new functionality. This is definitely not yet ready for end users but it demonstrates the power of the web platform and where it is heading. With the native video tag, local and session storage, plus much faster JavaScript engines, browsers are changing from simply presenting information to being a fully interactive platform.

Symfony CRUD Generator

The symfony CRUD generator is a very useful tool for speeding up your web development. When you need a list of items that you can list and edit, you are most likely building a standard CRUD (create-read-update-delete) interface. This is common functionality that is found in most applications. Since this is such a common task, it makes perfect sense that the symfony web framework has a tool to build it for you.

The Importance of the HTML Video Tag

Since Firefox, Safari, and recently Chrome hit the browser scene, the web has been growing and improving at a much faster pace. The next evolution of the web comes in the form of HTML 5, the latest HTML standard that brings native video playback, offline storage, 2D drawing via the canvas tag among others features. Of those, the video tag is the most important and critical to the continued success of the open web.