Titanium launched as 'open source alternative' to Adobe's AIR

Download Appcelerator Titanium Preview Release 0.1 for Windows from FileForum now.

Titanium -- a desktop, mobile, and Web development environment which enters public preview today -- is designed as a open source alternative for Windows, Mac and Linux developers to Adobe's AIR.

Start-up firm Appcelerator is today launching a public preview release of the Windows and Mac versions of Titanium, a desktop, mobile and Web application development environment. A Linux edition of Titanium is slated for January.


Titanium is aimed at easing the process of building "feature-rich" apps for multiple desktop -- and ultimately mobile -- environments, in addition to the Web, said Nolan Wright, CTO, in a briefing for BetaNews.

Up to now, developers interested in creating "rich" desktop apps have tended to build natively to particular OS, using platform-specific development environments such as C# for Windows and Objective-C for the Mac OS, Wright noted. But developers will be able use Titanium's single code base to create apps for either one or multiple platforms while still using tools they already know, including .NET, Java, PHP, and Ruby, or instance, according to the CTO. Titanium uses a JavaScript API.

Two years ago, Appcelerator brought out an SDK for creating "rich" Web apps through JavaScript, HTML, and CCS. Titanium can be used with or without the Appcelerator SDK, BetaNews was told. Appcelerator has already built proof-of-concept apps for Titanium that include a Twitter client and a contact manager.

Titanium is "not yet parallel in features with [Adobe's] AIR," Wright acknowledged. "But hopefully, we'll be able to move way beyond where AIR is. In an open source environment, progress can be made very fast," he added.

The Silicon Valley start-up has just finished a round of internal beta testing with Titanium. "[The software] is still in an early version, but it's ready for developers to start building and running [production] apps," Wright told BetaNews.

Key functionality includes the ability to integrate Web apps into the desktop environment for offline use; direct file system access; local database storage; native windowing; application and system control menus; and geo-location, among others.

Also today, Appcelerator announced that it has secured $4.1 million in Series A funding, led by Storm Ventures.

Download Appcelerator Titanium Preview Release 0.1 for Mac OS X from FileForum now.

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