[whatwg] Proposal for a web application descriptor

Simon Heckmann simon at simonheckmann.de
Sun May 1 10:05:37 PDT 2011

Well, the API should work in both cases, I guess. On mobile devices the UI design would be more challenging, but the idea is the same. If desired I could also design mock-ups for phones.

Am 01.05.2011 um 18:31 schrieb Göran Eriksson AP <goran.ap.eriksson at ericsson.com>:

> Hi Simon,
> Just to be certain, I'd like to ask if You are targeting desktop browser
> in mobile devices, such as iPad and iPhones, as well, or is Your proposal
> focused on PC/laptop devices?
> Kind Regards
> Göran
> On 2011-05-01 16.49, "Simon Heckmann" <simon at simonheckmann.de> wrote:
>> Hello everyone, 
>> After reading all your comments I partly re-tought some of my ideas.
>> First of all it might not be the best idea to create a full application
>> descriptor if it would only be used to specify permissions. Additionally,
>> I can see why people do not want to be asked for all permissions at once.
>> However, I on the other hand do not want to be asked for all permissions
>> separately. After reading some of the links posted in this discussion I
>> modified my proposal a little. You can find the new version here:
>>    http://www.simonheckmann.de/proposal/draft2
>> While the first part has not changed much, the second part is all-new and
>> includes two completely re-modeled mock-ups.
>> Again, comments are welcome.
>> Kind regards,
>> Simon Heckmann
>> Am 30.04.2011 um 17:23 schrieb Robert O'Callahan:
>>> On Sun, May 1, 2011 at 1:52 AM, Glenn Maynard <glenn at zewt.org> wrote:
>>>> On Sat, Apr 30, 2011 at 5:23 AM, Robert O'Callahan
>>>> <robert at ocallahan.org>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>> The application could have a settings page with a checkbox "Enable
>>>> desktop
>>>> notifications". When you click on that box, the browser shows its
>>>> (passive,
>>>> asynchronous) UI for enabling desktop notifications for that
>>>> application.
>>>> This still implies having an API to ask for permission for a feature
>>>> before
>>>> using it.  (Web Notifications has a draft for this:
>>>> http://dev.w3.org/2006/webapi/WebNotifications/publish/FeaturePermission
>>>> s.html
>>>> .)
>>>> Also, many developers won't want a UI like that, since when you
>>>> disable a
>>>> feature and expect users to enable it in settings, a lot of them won't.
>>>> Many people never look at settings pages at all.  Pages are more
>>>> likely to
>>>> request permissions as soon as they can.
>>> Notifications are a particularly hard case for the principle of
>>> requesting
>>> permissions in response to user action, because the whole point of
>>> notifications is that they happen when the user isn't giving the
>>> application
>>> attention :-).
>>> Another possible approach would be to have the default be for
>>> notifications
>>> to show up in browser UI associated with the page --- e.g., highlight
>>> the
>>> tab title and show the notification(s) at the top of the page if you
>>> switch
>>> to the tab --- and in that notification-showing UI, offer a "show on
>>> desktop" button which lets the notifications for that application
>>> migrate to
>>> the desktop --- effectively a permission grant.
>>> Of course, asking each of these while using the application would also
>>> be
>>>> painfully annoying, and it's not obvious how to make permissions
>>>> meaningful
>>>> to the user (eg. when you use its feature) while also scaling to lots
>>>> of
>>>> permissions.
>>> I think we have to consider specific cases. For Skype, it depends on
>>> whether
>>> all those permissions are really needed, and why... It might not be that
>>> hard to figure out how to make on-demand permission grants
>>> intelligible. We
>>> owe it to users to try.
>>> Rob
>>> -- 
>>> "Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians,
>>> for
>>> they received the message with great eagerness and examined the
>>> Scriptures
>>> every day to see if what Paul said was true." [Acts 17:11]

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