June 24, 2014

How a Bible Reader is Showing HTML5’s Power for Business

At first, it may seem strange to be talking about the AlphaRef KJV app, because here, the “KJV” stands for “King James Version,” a particular breed of the Bible. But as anyone who's actually read through the Bible at least once knows, the Bible is an extremely large document. As such, it makes surprisingly good test fodder for an app that can quickly, efficiently, and effectively move through a very large document, and that's what the AlphaRef KJV app can do thanks to a lot of help from HTML5.

AlphaRef KJV was built using the Alpha Anywhere system, which is what's called a “low-code development environment.” With Alpha Anywhere, users can quickly make apps for multiple platforms at the same time using PhoneGap-wrapped HTML5.  More and more companies have been looking to low-code environments in a bid to boost the rate at which apps are developed, allowing companies to go beyond individually hand-coding pieces and take better advantage of concurrent development mechanisms.

But in this case, Alpha Anywhere was used to generate AlphaRef KJV, which is already landing a lot of praise for the way it allows users to handle large documents even from mobile devices. It includes a variety of tools to help users move through the text rapidly, including standard drag scrolling and a set of menus that allow for organization by table of contents, book and chapter. There's a scrollbar system that can adjust its sensitivity to move quickly or slowly through text, and a full-text search to help find specific points. A frequently viewed list and recently viewed list allows for quick reference to points that have been regularly referred to, and a set of bookmarks complete with visual organization allows users to quickly refer back to specific points.

All these tools coupled together allow users to move rapidly through large blocks of text in order to find the information most needed at the time. That's a huge plus for business users, who often have to move rapidly through large blocks of text, and putting all of this on a mobile device makes for an even better value from there as more businesses turn to mobile devices to get the job done, from company-issued breeds to those that are part of bring your own device (BYOD) initiatives.

But using the King James Bible as the demonstration tool here really makes sense. When it comes to big books, the Bible usually jumps toward the front of the line, on par with books like “War and Peace” or various other major literary classics. If an app can show itself moving easily through the Bible, then users in turn should have a lot more confidence that that 200-page PDF file should be the kind of thing the app makes short work of. It's a confidence builder and it's an excellent practical demonstration. Plus, it really shows off the power of both low-code development environments and HTML5 as a whole; this combination of development factors generated a whole that moves easily through a King James Bible, which for many isn't particularly easy to read.

While the AlphaRef Reader is a powerful new tool for business use, it merely serves as evidence of a much more powerful tool: HTML5 as a development option. Putting this system to use can help get apps out the door much faster, or simply custom-tooled to address internal needs in a fashion that's easy to work with and easy to make.

Want to know more? Hear from a distinguished group of globally recognized authorities on everything from gaming, to responsive design to hybrid development at DEVCON 5 July 9-10 at the Kimmel Center at NYU. 

Edited by Maurice Nagle


HTML 5 Demos and Examples

HTML 5 experimentation and demos I've hacked together. Click on the browser support icon or the technology tag to filter the demos.... Learn More

HTML5 GAMES is the largest and most comprehensive directory of HTML5 games on the internet... Learn More

The HTML5 test

How well does your browser support HTML5?... Learn More

Working Draft (WHATWG)

This is the Editor’s Draft from WHATWG. You can use it online or print the available PDF version... Learn More

HTML5 Flip Book

Free jQuery and HTML5 flip book maker for PDF to online page turning book conversion... Learn More