I created IT News as a Newspaper to publish the most interesting IT news from all the big IT news vendors in Norway and some in the US in a very different way.
It started in 2010 as I bought me my very first iPad. I remember I was so exited trying out that little device. I felt I could do anything with it - anything I did before on my 21" Dell laptop. It was like a whole new world opened the doors for me. I tested hundreds of apps from the App Store. No function was untested. I read a lot on the Internet looking for recommendations for new apps that I could try out. I got interested in almost all Apple related technical informations. After a while I became quite an an expert in that particular area. It was pure fun and it still is.
But one thing has totally changed from that time - it is the way I get those informations. Those informations now come to me. Instead of publishing pure and boring looking text I added some valuable informations to each of all articles. Think of a headline of a typical article: ”We tested the new iPad”. If you ask somebody what is missing he will answer that he wants to look at a pure, clean and beautiful picture of a very beautiful iPad at the same time as he reads about the iPad test. Not many people want to look at some pretty business people who are shaking their hands pretending a big deal.
But it doesn’t stop here. By clicking on that beautiful iPad picture we will be redirected to the Amazon product page for the iPad we just read the test about and get even more detailed informations to this little nice device. And if we want - we can buy a new iPad right away directly on that page without going to some other website.
What makes a great IT news website even greater? Great woman and great cars - of course ;) Many people think that technology is dry - and very often they are right. Think of Java articles written by amateurs for fun. Amateurs are amateurs because they mostly focus on something else like Java programming for instance. That’s where they are the professionals. To make the site even more fun to get IT news from I added beautiful and fresh looking pictures. Click on one of those beautiful pictures and get even more beautiful pictures.
I love reading about IT news on it-news.malvik.de because for the first time we get all the IT news we are interested in on one webpage in a very different way. It saves us a lot of time. Time we can spend on transforming our visions into reality. I hope you enjoy my side as much as I do and that you are as much interested in IT as I am.
In this blog entry I will tell you why we should use the HTML5 web storage technology in one of our next web projects.
Let’s start with talking about cookies. Cookies are great. My children love them, my wife enjoys every little piece of them and I’m sure you all love good tasting cookies.
So, why am I telling you that? Well, cookies in the world wide web and cookies in the kitchen at home have one major issue in common. The one major issue which sometimes can become quite an ugly problem: SHARING.
We all love to share good tasting cookies with our family or our best friends and even with our great colleges at work. But we also share cookies when we surf in the Internet and buy something like the new iPad on the Apple Store or when we do net banking at Nordea.
Every time we send a request to a server like the Apple Store or Nordea and other websites we also send all domain related cookies to the server identifying what we just put in our basket or from which page we just came from. We send and spread those cookies - over the network - especially in wireless networks where everybody can listen to. Those cute tiny little cookies can turn into gigantic ugly monsters.
So what exactly is HTML5 web storage technology about? It’s about storing data in the local database of our browser. There are two different kinds of storages. The sessionStore and the localStore. Data in the sessionStore are only accessible in the current window and they die when we shut down our browser. Data in the localStorage are available in all windows and they are also accessible when we restart or reopen our browser. So we shouldn't store there any confidential informations.
In localStorage we can store up to about 5MB of text data depending on the browser - the average browser allows us to store up to 2.5MB. So, what does it mean? To answer that let’s take some examples and see what we actually can do with it and what we could not do before. Here´s a website a build - it-news.malvik.de. It publishes the most important IT news from all the big IT news vendors in Norway and some in the US.
Now, it gets interesting. A normal web user like us reads a headline of an article or blog entry and clicks on it to navigate to it and read it. When we are done we navigate back again to the first page clicking on the next headline and so on. But sometimes we read an article twice - maybe because the article is about some technical issue and we just need to test something in between. Every time we navigate back to an article - we load the whole page again from the web server. Of course, some data come from the browsers cache but we don’t control that as easy as we can with web storages.
Facebook for instance makes use of Local storage to provide certain services to us when we don’t have access to the internet. You can read and compose messages in the Facebook Messenger app when we’re offline because Facebook stores those messages locally on our device. Stackoverflow.com stores our navigation flow when we click on those tabs in sessionStore and uses it for back and fourth navigation.
Now, unlike cookies data in web storage are never being send back and fourth to the server. That makes our web applications much more secure. That does not mean that you can’t exploit web storages. But it means that we spread less personal and confidential information over the network. It means that we can re-create lost trust in our web applications which needs personal informations from users.
So, what else does it do? Well, it can save us a lot of network traffic. We are not sending all those cookies back and fourth on each request. We don’t send the same article over and over again. We already did that and we can store it in our local store. Think of how much money we can save when we run our application on for instance an Amazon E2.
Beside web storages - there are two other technologies - IndexedDB and File API. I will go into them at a later time.
Now comes the final question. Can we use one of these three technologies? Of course we can - at least one of them - partly ;) When we go for web storages we will get support from almost all browsers despite of one. You can guess which one :)