Chromeapp

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mx4525
New Member
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 8:40 pm

Chromeapp

Postby mx4525 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:06 pm

Ok since I've been in the church awhile I've decided that maybe I ought to do some real IT work and stop limiting my activities to braindeadsimple network maintenance at the stake center.

I figure with chromebooks getting more popular and chrome browser getting better and more used I thought maybe the church needed some link apps to its great scriptures site. So as an example and demonstration of how this is done I threw this together. It's just a simple chrome app that links to scriptures. The icon I recycled from the Gospel Library App.

Remember this is only an example I don't intend it to be final in any sense of the word also I intend no offense by recycling an icon its just there as a demonstration. I threw this together because I don't like half baked ideas without at least some structure to them.

In the attached zip there is:
1) The unpacked app in a directory
Which includes the files
manifest.json
128.png

Chromeapp.zip
Only an example to use: Unzip and load the unpacked folder into chrome/chromium via extensions menu
(24.36 KiB) Downloaded 119 times

md5sum: de56a776194b38755f9ed588f4620120

I ran it in my browser and it works fine.
First unzip the file.
To install go to google chrome or chromium and then click on your menu (looks like 3 horizontal bars)>settings>extensions
Enable developer mode if it isn't already
click the "Load unpacked extension"
navigate to your unpacked folder and select the unpacked folder titled Chromeapp

I repeat the manifest file here just for reference.

Code: Select all

{
"name": "LDS Scriptures",
"description": "Link to scriptures",
"version": "0.1",
"manifest_version": 2,
"icons": {
"128": "128.png"
},
"app": {
"urls": [
"http://www.lds.org/scriptures/"
],
"launch": {
"web_url": "http://www.lds.org/scriptures/"
}
},
"permissions": []
}


Happy Hacking! Also please comment I want to know what other folks think! :D

-Matt

EDIT 1:
I forgot to mention some stuff. First that all chrome apps icons must be 128x128 png so don't try to put an invalidly sized icon or the wrong format. Also all chrome apps require the manifest.json to begin with. Further if you want to pack it just click the button Pack extension. The resulting .crx file and .pem file are the extension itself in a .zip format and a private key for updating the app. I don't recommend uploading anything just yet until this gets fleshed out a bit more.

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aebrown
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Posts: 14690
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:48 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Re: Chromeapp

Postby aebrown » Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:08 pm

One suggestion: You used HTTP in your URLs. It would be better to use HTTPS. If someone is signed in to LDS.org, then accesses your app, following the HTTP link will sign them out, which is inconvenient.

And a question: Could you help me understand what the purpose of this app would be? As near as I can tell, it's nothing more than a shortcut to the LDS Scriptures, but there are plenty of other ways to have a shortcut. What makes this worth the effort of installing an extension?

mx4525
New Member
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 8:40 pm

Re: Chromeapp

Postby mx4525 » Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:52 am

Here are a couple links that explain web apps.

http://support.google.com/chrome/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1050586
https://developers.google.com/chrome/apps/articles/thinking_in_web_apps

As for installation hassle that's because this is an unpackaged app designed to demonstrate how it works not how its normally installed. It isn't published on the chrome web store like the vast majority of apps. On that web store its like google play such that you click click and its done. I've already seen some folks that made offline available scriptures on the chrome web store. My idea was to make a friendly looking little link that brings you to the main site. While geeks like you and me are well versed in using bookmarks or typing things in our kids are what I'm aiming at. Kids are used to click click and its done. That bookmark bar on your browser gets crowded fast. By setting up a simple friendly link in chrome kids will be able to recognize it right away from their mommy and daddy's tablets and phones.

Again I don't like half baked ideas that are impractical. This is why I put together this very simple demonstration. I figure if people want to read their scriptures offline they already can with their phones, tablets, ebook readers, and books. The website is already really good so why not just use that and link to it? I figure kids+adults like friendly links with easily recognizable icons/brands n'stuff so why not put together one so they can always navigate to it easy. Again I'm not aiming at powerusers just folks with limited understandings of computers.

For example while I am knowledgeable enough to make a direct link to the website on my ma's winXP netbook or on my ubuntu linux machine I know my ma hasn't the faintest clue how to use her bookmarks menu in firefox. Yet when she hops on chrome she has a friendly little link to her favorite mahjong game that pops right up when she clicks on its icon in the new tab page.

I hope this helps

-Matt


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