Chapter 24. Communicating with the Web

Figure 24-0.
Communicating with Web APIs

Mobile technology and the ubiquitous nature of the Web have changed the world we live in. You can now sit in the park and do your banking, search Amazon.com to find reviews of the book you’re reading, and check Twitter to see what people in every other park in the world are thinking about. Mobile phones have moved well past just calling and texting—now, you have instant access to the world’s data, too.

You can use your phone’s browser to reach the Web, but often the small screen and limited speed of a mobile device can make this problematic. Custom apps, specially designed to pull in small chunks of particularly suitable information from the Web, can provide a more attractive alternative to the mobile browser.

In this chapter, we’ll take a look at App Inventor components that access information from the Web. You’ll learn how to show a web page within the user interface of your app, and you’ll learn about APIs and how to access information from a web service.

Creativity is about remixing the world, combining (mashing) existing ideas and content in interesting new ways. Eminem is among many artists over the past few decades who popularized the music mashup when he set his Slim Shady vocal over AC/DC and Vanilla Ice tracks. This kind of “sampling” is now common, and numerous artists, including Girl Talk and Negativland, focus primarily ...

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