Ivor O’Connor

April 5, 2009

Starting Skeleton, Template, For Sqlite Google Gear Self-Contained Client Apps

Client side applications using google gears for locally storing SQL data are obviously the future. They allow applications to be run on any operating system without coding user interfaces, learning new languages, or managing SQL database daemons/servers. You can start by running the application off a server. But it’s much better to simply download the web page and run it disconnected from the internet. To start the application in the future you simply click on the html file you downloaded.  It is so cool.

Where are all the example sites describing how to use google gears for client side applications though? I’ve looked for starting point skeletons and have found NONE! I believe it is because the subject is new. So I’m publishing my own skeleton. It can be found at http://ioconnor.atbhost.net/google.gears.skeleton.html. I’ll probably upgrade it as time goes on but my skeleton is quite good already. After you read through Google’s tutorials at http://code.google.com/apis/gears/tutorial.html download my code and use it as a starting point for your own project. Don’t reinvent the wheel!

My skeleton is self-contained. There’s no need to download a set of files or update a registry, run an installation script, etc., assuming your environment is complete.

However if your base environment is not complete no problem. The environment is tested to verify the gears addon has already been installed, that javascript is enabled, and that you have an up-to-date browser. If something is lacking you must click “ok” to acknowledge the problem and then your browser takes you to the URL where  the fix is.

I wish I had this easy to use skeleton a long time ago. It makes client side browser applications using SQL easy!

I’m probably going to make quite a few client side browser applications using this template. Having a free interface, sql database, and programming language across all OS platforms levels the playing field so much it can’t be ignored.

Update 2009.04.08: The code was refined yet again tonight. There’s nothing in it that seems to be lacking that can be done better. However please comment on it if there is something more that could be done…



  1. The link for the skeleton is not found.

    Comment by pwujek — March 13, 2010 @ 10:31 pm

    • Unfortunately the host provider sponsoring the code decided he was going to trash all accounts and start over. He did this with no warning and no hint of remorse. I wrote a blog entry about this. I have not bothered to look for another provider since then.

      That having been said the code is old. Currently it works poorly because google has dropped support for their gears. They did this in much the same fashion the host provider dropped support for their clients. No remorse and with no current solutions to turn to.

      On the 6 month to 3 year horizon will be html5 support for sqlite. Google already supplies this in their Chrome browser on the M$ platform. In time, perhaps years, they will provide support for Ubuntu. And sometime after that the snot nosed Google developer that said *NOBODY* uses 64 bit linux might actually be forced to supply a 64 bit version.

      While the Google Gods dangle temptations in front of us and snicker to themselves about us users it seems Opera, the little browser that could, is very busy. They have already implemented the HTML5 specs and have articles how to use it here http://dev.opera.com/articles/view/web-storage/. Unfortunately the Ubuntu release of this, according to their main page, will be “available shortly”.

      Firefox developers are out of the loop. They are fighting with themselves about loft notions that have no relevance to us users. When they finally resolve those weighty matters about whether trees make sounds if they fall in the woods with nobody to hear them they will have been left far behind. It’s a shame how badly they fight between themselves rather than getting working products out the door.

      M$ on the other hand is stating they think the whole idea is bad. That until they manage to figure out a way to brand the product so they can argue their stuff is superior, though slightly different, they will have nothing working.

      I’m pissed off about it all since I have some apps that have been discontinued until Opera or perhaps even Google get sqlite working with Ubuntu.

      Comment by ioconnor — March 14, 2010 @ 2:27 pm

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