Native, Cross platform, Mobile - Codemania 2014

08ff8b09ff4b88caafd4435ba297ebb1?s=47 Nic Wise
April 04, 2014

Native, Cross platform, Mobile - Codemania 2014

My Codemania talk from April 2014. Code for it is here:


Nic Wise

April 04, 2014


  1. Native, Cross-platform, Mobile Nic Wise! @fastchicken

  2. Why Cross-platform?

  3. See, WhatsApp wasn't born in Silicon Valley on an iPhone,

    rather it fought its way to a $16B exit by providing an awesome messaging experience to the middle billion, those living on $10 a day. And you know what, on $10 a day you probably don't have an iPhone or an Android handset. Rather you are probably carrying around a "feature phone", one of a thousands variations of handsets built by Nokia or Samsung running a version of Java 2 Mobile Edition. — TextIt.In Blog -$16b-exit-build-a-j2me-app This might be going too far. But one platform is no longer going to cut it.
  4. The Three Ways

  5. “The client-side mess · Things are bad. You have to

    build everything three times: Web, iOS, Android. We’re talent-starved, this is egregious waste, and it’s really hurting us.” — Tim Bray Software-in-2014
  6. HTML5 • “Write once, run anywhere” • Apache Cordova, Phonegap

    as containers • Topcoat; jQTouch; KendoUI; PhoneJS; Sencha Touch 2; others • Wrapper around a native browser (but without JIT’ed Javascript on iOS) • But the browsers aren’t the same! • Easy to make an app. A lot harder to make something which looks right on each platform
  7. Know Your Mobile - Best and Worst of UK Banking

    Apps! … Lloyds—the bank that set the standard for the worst banking app you can create. Sadly for Halifax users, the app is a rebranded version of the Lloyds app, which means it’s nothing more than a mobile website disguised as an app.
  8. Code it twice • Write the whole thing twice -

    once in Objective C, once in Java • Or three times • Separate teams or one team doing both feature-by-feature • Works, but a lot of reworking and context- switching tax
  9. Cross-platform Native • Ideal Goal • One language/library like HTML5

    • Works on all platforms from one code base, but uses the native controls/libraries This is a pipe dream and will never happen.
  10. There is no “Write once…”. I wish there were. I

    know you wish there were too. But I wish my daughter had a baby unicorn to ride too. There is, however, “Focus on creating the best possible user experience on each device and try to get as much code re-use as you can along the way.” ! — Charlie Kindle screwed-us-write-once-is-anti-customer/
  11. • Delphi (Object Pascal++) and C++ • Abstracts the UI,

    using a similar method to SWING • Common cross platform base library • iOS, Android, Windows, Mac •
  12. • Pascal / C#, with a lot of modern additions

    • Compiles down to the native platform, but no common library (yet) • iOS, Android, Windows, Mac • Needs both Windows (VS) and Mac (toolchain) for iOS development • •
  13. • C#/F#/VB.NET + .NET FX • Full access to the

    native platform (including ObjC classes and Android JARs) • Share common, platform independent code; use common platform-independent libraries • Write platform dependant (usually UI) code N times. • iOS, Android, WinPhone, Win8, Mac, others. •
  14. • Based on Mono, open source (LGPL and commercial) .NET

    runtime • Write code in Xamarin Studio or Visual Studio • Do some bits in Xcode (XIB editor, storyboards, archive to AppStore) • iOS: Runs as native ARM code. No JIT, no interpreter. • Android: Mono VM runs as a peer to Dalvik. Can JIT, can do lots more than iOS
  15. • Think of the iOS stack, but replace ObjC with

    C# • Think of the Android stack, but replace Java with C# • Add the rest of the .NET framework
  16. Native UI. Native Performance. 
 Shared code across platforms.! Full

    API coverage! C# at every level
  17. Q: “So, just how much can we reuse?” A: “It

  18. iCircuit: 70-90% source: Frank Krueger -

  19. Calca: about 75-95% “This is the general lesson I’ve learned

    over the years: writing iOS apps is a hell of a lot more work than writing Mac apps. Enlightening? No. Honest? Yeah.” ! - Frank Krueger! available-code-reuse
  20. PropertyCross A single project, reimplemented in 16 cross platform tools.!

    All source available! !
  21. Strategies

  22. The Usual Suspects • Inversion of Control, Dependancy Injection •

    TinyIOC, Ninject • Messaging • TinyMessenger, ReactiveUI* • Separation of concerns, layering • Test Drive Development • NUnitLite built in, or treat desktop unit tests as a separate platform
  23. Databases • SQLite - everyone’s favourite small database. • SQLite-Net

    PCL on NuGet • Mono.Data.SqliteClient ADO.NET provider • Zumero - SQLite replication from SQL Server ! • Akavache - Async Key-Value Store • Couchbase for .NET - NoSQL, syncs to server-side
  24. Networking • HttpClient • ModernHttpClient - uses the platform-specific clients

    under the hood • RestSharp, ServiceStack • Native/3rd party on both platforms (eg NSUrlSession, AFNetworking, OkHttp)
  25. MVxx • MVVM, MVP, MVC, MVAB • MVVMCross, the 800lb

    Gorilla • ReactiveUI • Lots of others around, a few “being worked on” ! • Or just roll your own
  26. @paulcbetts @slodge Cross-platform Superstars

  27. Quick Currency

  28. None
  29. Summary

  30. Thanks! @fastchicken