App functionality: task categories

This page describes and links to the sub-pages we have that cover the development of different categories of app functionality, or "things you will want your app to do".

Control data flow
This section provides a basic guide to setting up the data flow through your application, including HTTP basics, and when and how to use Ajax.
Gather and modify data
A lot of what you'll want to do involves retrieving data — from files, the device hardware and key services, and the location around the device. This section looks at topics such as Geolocation, exchanging data from files and phone contacts, battery information, device orientation and light sensors, and grabbing pictures from the camera.
Control the display
This part of the docs contains tutorials covering mechanisms you can use to control the display of data to the user. Obvious topics are full screen, orientation and pointer lock, but this also includes creating phone notifications and controlling vibration.
Implement user input and control mechanisms
Modern user input goes beyond simple mouse and keyboard, including pointer lock, touch inputs, drag and drop, and more. This section provides best-practices articles that cover the different disciplines in detail.
Work offline
When using apps, it is a great advantage to be able to continue using them when a network connection isn't available, especially on portable devices like laptops and mobile phones. This section looks in detail at making apps work offline using mechanisms such as appCache, localStorage, and IndexedDB.
Manipulate media
A lot of modern web usage includes the consumption and manipulation of media, such as images and video. This part of our docs looks at video, audio, and images, and how to do interesting things with them inside Open Web Apps.
Advanced network communication
This section moves on from our basic data flow article, looking at advanced network communication technologies and techniques like CORS, system Ajax, WebRTC, Web sockets, and how these can be used to your advantage.
Play games
Special considerations for game app developers, above and beyond the basics of Web app development.
Utilize User services
Here we look at APIs designed to facilitate common user services, such as taking payments and login functionality.
App permissions
Access to device APIs is key to creating many useful apps. Here is what's available and how to access them.

Tools for app developers
Technology reference documentation
Getting help from the community

If you still aren't sure how to do what you're trying to get done, feel free to join the conversation!

Don't forget about the netiquette...


For basic usage guides on WebAPIs, organized by name, check out our WebAPI page. You can also find an alphabetical list of related API and event reference pages.


Document Tags and Contributors

Contributors to this page: dkocho4, chrisdavidmills, eharris
Last updated by: dkocho4,