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EETimes: [MontaVista] Linux builds open-source browser [ViewML]

Sep 05, 2000, 14:33 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Gregory Haerr)

"The family of available desktop browsers for Linux has evolved into quite a clan, with over 20 member browsers vying for user attention. Why, then, introduce another one? After surveying the field of available browsers, in search of even one appropriate for embedded deployment, we found that no single Web client would suit. Browsers were either too large-like Netscape's Mozilla-and would never run on most embedded systems, or too small, with very incomplete HTML. So we decided to design a new browser, one that was specifically suited for the needs of the embedded Linux community."

"We had five initial design goals. First, we wanted to create the smallest browser possible, but retain 100 percent standards compliance for HTML parsing. ... Second, and just as important, we wanted to use available open-source code for the HTML parsing and display engine. ... Third, we wanted to use the selected HTML widget code as is. ... Fourth, we wanted to use a set of user-interface widgets suitable for small environments. ... Finally, we felt that for the browser to be widely accepted it was necessary for it to be flexible enough to run on the standard X Window system as well as the newer embedded Microwindows graphical windowing environment (www.microwindows.org)."

"The ViewML browser runs in about 2 Mbytes of RAM; code file size is around 800k. Combined with Microwindows, the entire environment can run in less than 2.5 Mbytes of RAM, which allows its use on most 32-bit embedded Linux systems running graphical displays. With the entire ViewML project in open-source, other contributors will quickly join the effort and enhance ViewML even further."

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