22 September 2009

That Big Shop



I've always found shopping at Amazon a bit of a cumbersome experience. The pages seem a little cluttered and when choosing between products there's lots of back-and-forth as you switch between search results and product detail.

So I thought I'd make use of the Amazon Product Advertising API and write my own interface. The result is That Big Shop. It's not old browser or search engine friendly but it does, I think, have a more responsive feel to it than the standard Amazon interface.

To create the site, I choose to use the Cappuccino framework and I'm glad I did. The painful part of writing web applications is getting them to look and work the same across browsers. With Cappuccino I didn't need to worry about that; as long as I coded to the framework API, Cappuccino would take care of rendering what I wanted consistently across browsers.

2 comments:

John Lee said...

"""when choosing between products there's lots of back-and-forth as you switch between search results and product detail.
"""

There are these new-fangled things called browser tabs, Mike ;-)

Cappuccino: interesting to see somebody implement some of an existing GUI API for the web. How much does it differ from cocoa proper?

An ex-colleague has been working on porting Google Native Client to glibc. Maybe one day NaCl will be as popular as flash and we'll be able to distribute our "web apps" as plain old native binaries :-0

maport said...

Hi John,

Yeah but then you have to back-and-forth between browser tabs. And that's way too much effort!

I haven't used Cocoa so not too sure how it compares but I believe it's fairly close. Close enough that I have referred to Cocoa docs when using it.

I'd definitely recommend it when writing a "web app". It feels much more like writing a traditional desktop app. The page layout mechanism are, I think, just like those in Cocoa and far more preferable to mucking around with CSS.

NaCl is interesting but hey, browsers are the new OS right? I'd prefer we got to the stage where there was a standard VM in the browsers that we could run our language of choice on.