JavaScript, Dr. Seuss and Titanium Appcelerator

A guest post by Wil Collins, a computer science major at Virginia Tech and an intern with Handshake Media, Incorporated, a VT KnowledgeWorks member company. Wil's post was reviewed as a "A quick, fun read," by Titanium Development.  A version of this post first appeared on Handshake 2.0.

To use the mobile application development tool Titanium Appcelerator requires knowledge of JavaScript.

Expanding upon this Dr. Seuss analogy that Titanium Appcelerator works for mobile apps like McBean's machine works for Sneetches, if mobile apps are thought of as the Star-Belly Sneetches, then the JavaScript code can be understood to be a Plain-Belly Sneetch. Placed into McBean's Machine, a.k.a. Titanium Appcelerator, a single "plain" app written in JavaScript is transformed into two "star" apps written in Objective-C (iOS) and Java (Android).

Despite their similar names, JavaScript is not to be confused with the Java programming language. However, it is helpful to think of JavaScript as an object-oriented language, just like Java. "Thinking object-oriented" allows for the encapsulation of data within objects as well as functions and methods to interact with individual objects.

"Thinking object-oriented" also allows for easier management of the various aspects of graphical user interfaces (GUIs), including those within mobile apps. Buttons, tabs, text fields and windows all have different purposes and perform separate tasks and, therefore, can be thought of as separate objects. Being part of a GUI, they are all designed to be interacted with and the use of various methods and functions makes this interaction possible.

Titanium Appcelerator’s modular approach to the design process makes the development of apps with their software much more object-oriented. It provides users with numerous application programming interfaces (APIs) that contain many of the common components for GUI implementation, both desktop and mobile. These APIs enable the metaphorical Dr. Seuss magic to occur when developing mobile apps. They transform the JavaScript written by the programmers into separate code for the two operating systems, or should I say they transform the Plain-Belly Sneetches into those with “stars upon thars.”


Handshake Media, Incorporated is a communications company specializing in public relations and mobile technologies to generate market awareness and market action for its businesses-to-business and business-to-consumer clients. Handshake Media creates both the method and the message to achieve meaningful engagement and conversation for corporations, organizations and enterprises seeking global reach for their products and services. Handshake Media, Incorporated is based in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA and is a member of the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership. Handshake(R) mobile applications are produced and developed by Handshake Media, Incorporated.

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