Can this be done? (The current state of the "write once run anywhere"-stack)


#1

I’m currently wondering how much one can do with Meteor right now.
Especially when it comes to “write once, run anywhere” idea.

#Example
So let’s take a fairly simple app like the meteor create --example todos app.
(Any simple app will do)

#Output
Now I add these things to the mix:

  • meteor add-platform ios
  • meteor add-platform android
  • meteor add arboleya:electrify

With this is it currently possible to:

a) deploy this app so it’s available on the web (yes, definitely)
b) output a .ipa file (ios app) that I can install on an iphone
c) output a .apk file (android app) that I can install on an android smartphone
d) output an .exe file (using arboleya:electrify) that I can launch on a pc

and of course

e) link them all together so they share the same set of data/collections

#Requirements
If it’s possible, are there any requirements you would suggest?
For example always use a mobile framework like ionicframework?
Anything I’m missing?

I’m really interested in any kind of experience you can share on this.

#In other words
Basically what I’m asking is:
I want to start prototyping a simple app in the morning and have a web-version, an .ipa, an apk and an .exe ready in the evening. Can this be done?


#2

I haven’t done the .exe part personally but yes, it can be done. Meteor-ionic will speed up your prototyping but it had some issues which prevented me from using it in production.


#3

Yes, I am working on this right now.

The main thing is that you have to DDP.connect to the same server on all of them. That is all.


#4

Thats awesome to hear!

Do you have to do any extra work for each of the android/ios/desktop versions?

I’m guessing the DDP.connect is just a few lines of code, right?

Other than that is it just a process like:
a) write my simple app
b) type the build commands for android/ios/desktop
and be done with it?

Or do you have to rewrite your code a bit for each plattform and store it somewhere separately?

Thanks a ton for your replies. :smile:


#5

If you want a “client only” application, you can basically just choose the server you want to connect to, the collections you want, and make subscriptions. I have a client application which accesses a subset of collections from my main application, as an “admin dashboard”.

let remote = DDP.connect(Meteor.settings.public.remote.url);

Meteor.connection = remote;
Accounts.connection = remote;

Meteor.users = new Mongo.Collection('users', remote);
Orders = new Mongo.Collection('orders', remote);

FlowRouter.subscriptions = function () {
  this.register('workstation', Meteor.settings.remote.id);
}

// handle the reconnect annoyances
if (Meteor.isClient) {
  Accounts.onLogin(function () {
    Meteor._localStorage.setItem('_token', Accounts._storedLoginToken());
  });
  remote.onReconnect = function () {
    Meteor.loginWithToken(Meteor._localStorage.getItem('_token'));
  }
}

#6

edit: Sorry I’m tired, I meant you can point your client build to the same server URL as your main web app.

meteor build $DIST_FOLDER --server=$SERVER --mobile-settings=settings.json

#7

Thanks a lot.
If you happen to have some sample code on that, could you post it?
Really curious how that works.

Edit: Thanks a ton!


#8

Ah I see. Thanks man! Looks doable. :slight_smile:


#9

You may find this blog a useful resource for building a series of micro-apps using a common structure. I will say that I would have preferred to see the use of the PACKAGE_DIRS environment variable than using symlinks, which are a pain to manage.