iPhone App Review: jQRef – jQuery Reference

As a web designer / developer, reading reference material while developing is essential since there is just no way that anyone could keep all of the syntax for any API in memory.

Whilst all languages and frameworks have complete documentation accessible on the internet, recently I have noticed that a few iPhone apps have been created so that documentation is accessible offline.

Some examples from the iTunes App Store:

Lately, I have been doing a bit of development with jQuery, so I thought I would write a review of  the jQRef iPhone app by Luke Borloz which I think is quite useful.

The official description is… jQRef comes complete with the latest documentation from jQuery, including features from the new 1.4.3 release.

But first, you might be thinking “Why would I need a jQuery reference app on my iPhone, when I can just go to the jQuery website?”

There are a number of reasons, but the main reasons for me are:

  • You are temporarily developing on a laptop without access to the internet. eg: On a plane, on the subway etc.
  • A native app with all the documentation pre-loaded is much faster than trying to view a non-iPhone formatted website over 3G.
  • Being able to save favorites is handy.
  • Searching using filters (All, Category, Method, Property & Selector) is useful.
  • If you don’t have two monitors, having the jQuery documentation on another small iPhone screen is nice.
  • It’s fast.
  • Have an easy to browse jQuery pocket reference.

I compared the jQRef documentation to the official jQuery documentation and it is exactly the same. The only difference that I could find is that the app documentation version is 1.4.3, but the official jQuery documentation is now up to 1.4.4 (released Nov 11th 2010), but that is a very recent jQuery release with only one extra feature – .fadeToggle() and a bunch of bug fixes and enhancements.

The only thing that you can’t really do is copy ‘n paste the snippets of code from the documentation into your own project since the documentation is on the iPhone. But the main reason I would be using this app is because I don’t have a connection to the internet, so without the app I wouldn’t have any documentation at all.

Another thing to note is that you can scroll the code snippets horizontally by using  a two finger gesture. Landscape orientation has not been implemented yet but the author is considering implementing it in the next release.

Here are the main features of jQRef:

Easily browse the full jQuery library, whether sitting at your desk, on the plane, or simply on the go. Browse by category or even jQuery version number.

View detailed information on each jQuery property, method, or selector, complete with descriptions, method signatures and argument descriptions.

View detailed examples of how to apply the referenced property, method, or selector.

Looking for something? Use the search function, complete with filters to help you find what you are looking for faster.

Need to reference something later? Simply tap the star in the top right corner to add it to your favorites.

Favorites have their own screen, so accessing them is easy.

Want to reorder your favorites?
Sort them however you please.

Freebie Alert

Expired… all promo codes have now been allocated! 🙁

Since jQRef was only recently released, the author has given me a few freebie jQRef promo codes to give away to readers of BlogWebDesigner.com

If you would like to be able to have a copy for free, contact me (or add a comment to this post) and I’ll email one out to you. Note that the promo codes will only work for the US iTunes store, they cannot be used for iTunes stores outside of the US.

Kirk is a software / web developer & business consultant. He has been doing online marketing and product development for the last eight years, and been an entrepreneur for the last five. BlogWebDesigner was created to help Internet Marketers sell more stuff online.
Posted in Web Design

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