Cloud Four

We Wrote the Book on the Mobile Web

Head First Mobile Web by Lyza Danger Gardner and Jason Grigsby

Cloud Four cofounders Lyza and Jason wrote Head First Mobile Web, published in early 2012 by O'Reilly. Using a conversational tone and plenty of easy-to-follow visuals, Head First Mobile Web is neither a reference book, nor a dry textbook -- it's the smart way for desktop web developers to go mobile. HFMW gets your hands dirty with HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, and even some backend code right out of the gate!

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What you'll learn

  1. Getting started on the mobile web: Responsive Web Design

    Adapt websites to look great on lots of devices by building on the web skills you already have.

  2. Responsible responsiveness: Mobile-first Responsive Web Design

    Beauty is only skin deep. If you want your site to run like greased lightning on mobile devices, you need to start thinking "mobile-first."

  3. Building a separate mobile site: facing less-than-awesome circumstances

    What if, sometimes, instead of mixing desktop and mobile support into one tasty, responsive soup, you have to keep 'em separated? Here we get down and dirty by detecting mobile users, writing markup for crufty phones, and building a separate mobile site.

  4. Deciding which devices to support

    How do you decide where to draw the line on device support? If you can't support everything, you must decide what exactly you can support. Concoct a prescient potion from your project's ingredients to help determine which devices you support and what to do about those you don't.

  5. Device capabilities, device databases, and device classes

    How do you avoid only building (lame) content for the lowest common denominator? HFMW looks at device capabilities, device databases, and device classes to aid you in adapting you're not dumbing everything down just because some devices can't handle your awesome content.

  6. Building a mobile web app using the open-source jQuery Mobile framework

    "But we want an app!" cries your client. Turn your mobile website into a mobile web app using an open-source mobile framework, relying heavily on our friends HTML5, CSS, and JavaScript. Yes, HFMW guides you down the path of creating a complete mobile app using web technology!

  7. Super mobile web apps: harnessing mobile's unique capabilities

    You'll learn to capitalize on the mobile web's natural talents by using assertive progressive enhancement, geolocation, and even offline mode.

  8. Going native: building hybrid mobile/native apps using Phonegap Build

    Sometimes you've got to go native. You'll learn how to build cross-platform native apps, built with standard web technologies, using PhoneGap Build.

  9. Being future friendly

    Now what? There are so many options for building the mobile web. What's next? How do you choose which technology to use? Adopting a future-friendly mindset can help you navigate the complex twists and turns of the mobile web.

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Who's it for?

Head First Mobile Web is aimed at hands-on web designers and developers curious about making the leap into mobile.

You'll build on your existing web development skills, building working examples to cement your new knowledge. To get the most out of the book, you should have solid HTML and CSS chops, and you shouldn't be frightened by snippets of JavaScript and PHP code.

Buy Head First Mobile Web on Amazon

What readers are saying

This whole @lyzadanger and @grigs Head First Mobile Web isn't a read, it's an XTREME LEARNATHON! I'm a trillion times smarter and only on page 70.

-- @myHeroDevon (Devon Rathie-Wright)

...Exceptional way to exceptional book...All in all, this book does a great job of demystifying the complex workspace of mobile application development and clearly explains how to design and develop bullet-proof websites.

-- Santosh Shanbhag

@grigs @lyzadanger Thanks for writing the awesome Head First Mobile Web book. Just started reading but already learned so much new stuff.

-- @nionwebdesign (Niels Pilon)

Just finished first pass thru book. Lots of cool stuff in there...Head First Mobile Web gets my +1.

-- @barrypj (Paul James Barry)

I really didn’t think it was possible to toss in anymore mobile web development topics, but Head First Mobile Web then discusses how to use PhoneGap Build to create a hybrid Android App. In addition to teaching you how to use PhoneGap Build, the chapter also dives into LocalStorage, more device detection, and the mediaCapture API.

-- David Hayden

This book helps you reset, rejig and rethink your existing skills and hone them for mobile. ... This book is needed right here, right now and will elevate your skills and career to take advantage of the opportunities mobile presents.

-- Laurence Veale

Advance praise for Head First Mobile Web

"Head First Mobile Web successfully presents practical techniques all readers can use immediately, while giving plenty of foundation and resources for more experienced developers to build upon. Lyza and Jason have created a pragmatic introduction to the chaotic world of mobile web development as it is today, with a glimpse of how we can and should approach it for tomorrow."

--Stephen Hay, Founder and principal of Zero Interface

"An excellent introduction to a complex but exciting topic. Hands-on from the get-go, Head First Mobile Web provides an excellent introduction to the challenges and opportunities available when exploring the next chapter in web design."

--Stephanie and Bryan Reiger, Designers at Yiibu