Home Appcelerator Launches Titanium: AIR for the Open Web

Appcelerator Launches Titanium: AIR for the Open Web

Today, Appcelerator, a Mountain View-based company that focuses on open source technologies for building rich web applications, announced the first public release of its Titanium platform. The closest analogue to Titanium is probably Adobe AIR. Titanium allows developers to create platform independent, web enabled desktop and mobile applications. The Titanium platform is currently available for Windows and Mac, but a Linux version should be available in January 2009.

Titanium is built on top of a number of open source projects, including WebKit, Gears, and Chromium. Some of the most important features of the platform include direct file system access, built-in database support, native windowing, desktop notifications, geo-location, and a plugin architecture for easily extending the platform.

Demo Apps

We tested some of the demo applications that Appcelerator has created, and both the Twitter app and the ‘Playtanium’ desktop YouTube player worked just as advertised and felt as speedy as you would expect from a native application. Being demos, the apps were obviously not very feature rich, but clearly show the potential of the platform.


Appcelerator also announced a $4.1 million Series A funding round, which should put the development of this platform on safe footing for the foreseeable future.

Bridging the Gap Between Web and Desktop

According to Jeff Haynie, Appcelerator’s CEO, Titanium is meant to provide an open source alternative to other, proprietary platforms with similar feature sets. It is good to see more innovation in this space, which until now was more or less dominated by proprietary platforms.

The question, of course, will be if developers will adopt the platform for their own projects (looking at the documentation, it would seem that any Ruby programmer should be able to get a Titanium project up and running in no time). Appcelerator is definitely doing its part to help developers by providing them with ample documentation for the Titanium SDK.

Overview of two Titanium Demo Apps from jeff haynie on Vimeo.

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