The rendering of graphics inside Web browsers has become something of a battle between multi-purpose scripting languages and the basic markup language of the Web itself, HTML. Although HTML does a good job of rendering basic frames and producing the layout of pages, it does not always excel at animations or complex graphics. Even the advancements seen in HTML5 do not always stand up to the demands of modern Internet users.
The founder of Famo.us, Steve Newcomb, recently spoke to TMC (News - Alert) about the particulars of this company and the technology it develops. He said that Famo.us delivers on the promise that HTML5 originally made to all connected users—that the Internet would be more interactive and that Web development companies could work with a single codebase and create webpages that acted the same across all devices. He suggests, however, that the promise has not yet been fulfilled.
"[HTML5] held the promise of integrating with all of the existing Web world, with all of the built Web infrastructures that are already in place. But it failed because performance was terrible and animations didn't feel 'native.' Companies like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter (News - Alert) pulled back from their HTML5 efforts, blog posts began claiming the Web is dead, and an entire industry fell to its knees. We searched for the root of the problem and realized it was the reliance on the very poorly performing layout renderer and animation engine resident in the browser," Newcomb said.
Famo.us claims that it can render Web animations at high-definition video quality—60 frames per second. This was unthinkable only a few years ago, and although HTML5 cannot deliver on that feat on its own, with Famo.us it has the potential to change the entire landscape of how the Internet operates. Companies such as Facebook (News - Alert) can begin to create scrolling timelines that respond more dynamically to user input or to updated user information; game developers can create interactive content that looks and feels real. With HTML5 allowed to do what it does best and Famo.us doing all the lifting regarding heavy-duty graphics implementations, businesses can stop being afraid to innovate graphics-intensive content with the expectation that browsers will leave them wanting. Now, browsers can deliver, and they are just waiting for developers to test them.
Edited by Maurice Nagle