pmuellr is Patrick Mueller, Senior Node Engineer at NodeSource.

other pmuellr thangs: home page, twitter, flickr, github

Friday, December 17, 2010

weinre at GitHub

I finally pushed my weinre project up to GitHub last night:

weinre - web inspector remote - pronounced "winery"

It's a debugger for mobile web apps. Uses the Web Inspector debug front-end from WebKit (implemented in HTML/CSS/JS), plugged up to some plain old JavaScript running in your web page. There's an HTTP server in there somewhere.

It's early days - it may not be the easiest thing to set up and run - and there's a lot of function not implemented (showing all the CSS style info, for instance). But it's something.

I intend to continue enhancing it over the next while. First order of business will be to get it back, function-wise, to where my earlier prototype was, as shown in this video. I've been spending more time on infrastructure stuff than adding debug function lately - it'll be fun to dive back into the innards of Web Inspector again.

My intention is for this work to eventually be folded into the PhoneGap project. PhoneGap (wisely IMO) requires a Contributor Agreement in place before accepting contributions, so I won't be able to accept any contributions into my repo unless you've signed up.

If you have questions, feature requests, etc, create an issue at GitHub. I also hang out on #phonegap on freenode during business hours (US east).

Tasty Innards Too!

Besides this project's subject matter being a fun thing to work on (building a working debugger), I've had a lot of fun building and using smaller thingees. If I can get my blogging going again, hopefully I'll write more about some of these goodies, soon:

  • All my JavaScript code is structured as CommonJS modules, using modjewel.

  • All my JavaScript is written in a pidgin dialect of JavaScript called scoop. Basically just a lexically simpler way to define classes, methods, etc in JavaScript (if you didn't know already, I'm an old Smalltalk dude). Here's an example - the implementation of the Console class used by the debug target.

  • The interface between the large grained components of weinre is specified in a subset-but-extended bastardization of WebIDL. The Web Inspector code already does this itself (because WebKit in general does this also), and it worked out well for me. I wrote a WebIDL-to-JSON compiler, and the runtime makes use of the JSON to create proxies, etc. Lots more interesting stuff can be done here, I'm sure.

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