Open-Source webOS Finally Goes Beta

The Open webOS blog reports that after eight months of converting to an open-source format, Palm's former webOS platform has finally gone into beta. The Beta release is comprised of 54 webOS components available as open source under the Apache 2.0 license. The release also provides two build environments: the desktop build and the OpenEmbedded build.

"It has taken a lot of hard work, long hours and weekend sacrifices by our engineering team to deliver on our promise and we have accomplished this goal," the blog reads. "This [release] brings over 450,000 lines of code released under the Apache 2.0 license, which is one of the most liberal and accepted in the open source community."

According to the blog, the Desktop Build is the ideal development environment for "enhancing the webOS user experience with new features and integrating state of the art open source technologies." Now developers can use all their desktop tools on powerful development machines. As for the OpenEmbedded Build, it provides the ideal development environment for porting webOS to "new and exciting devices."

So why did the team choose OpenEmbedded? It was a natural choice, they claim, because of its widespread community adoption, the excellent cross-compiling support for embedded platforms, and the support for multiple hardware architectures. This build even provides an ARM emulator, running core services such as db8 and node.js. The team is also actively converging on an OE Core image which boots to System Manager and the full webOS experience.

"The desktop build brings together all of the elements released so far on the Ubuntu desktop," the blog states. "Our upleveled System Manager now has support for applications, including the Core Applications such as Calendar and Contacts, with their underlying Synergy services. What’s more, many 3rd party Enyo apps are supported too."

The blog goes on to talk about getting the community involved, and talks a little about the Community Edition of webOS. The team also reports that it's still looking for hired hands, and that plenty of jobs can be found here. Finally, future plans regarding Open webOS will be revealed once the September build is released.

To read the entire blog, head here.

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  • A Bad Day
    I wasn't expecting webOS open source. Often times software companies simply let their failed products die and refuse to allow anyone to touch it, even if the source codes are nearly or more than a decade old.
  • digiex
    Is WebOS more Apple friendly than Android?
  • ethanolson
    digiexIs WebOS more Apple friendly than Android?

    Yeah. Palm had won some suits when Apple had claims against them. It's pretty well established at this point that the WebOS platform isn't going to be shut down by Apple.