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December 06, 2013

Famo.us to Be Offered Under MPLv2 Open Source License

The Famo.us JavaScript framework that promises to put the speed in graphics-intensive HTML5 apps has come a long way in a relatively short amount of time. Famo.us as a company has existed since 2011 and started out with the goal of making a better Pinterest, but founder Steve Newcomb found that HTML5 couldn’t provide the desired user experience — that’s where the idea to build a new framework capable of handling more complex tasks smoothly was born.

This year has seen the most significant activity from the Famo.us team. To start with, the company raised $4 million from investors back in March, followed up by the announcement that the Famo.us platform would be available for free at launch. Then, in September, Famo.us announced that its framework would soon hit the private beta stage.

Now, Famo.us has dropped another significant piece of news: The Famo.us framework will be offered under an open source Mozilla (News - Alert) Public License Version 2.0 (MPLv2) license. Additionally, the company has released some demonstration code on the code-sharing site Codepen and is partnering with Firebase, a database as a service provider.

In other words, the Famo.us framework seems to be developing at a healthy pace. Once made widely available, Famo.us promises to enable developers to build media-rich, graphics-intensive interfaces capable of running in any Web browser at an average of 40 frames per second — all without the need for plug-ins of any kind.

The framework also offers more straightforward app development by enabling Web apps to leverage a device’s graphics processor in a unique way. According to InfoWorld, Famo.us comprises four core elements: a rendering engine, a physics engine, a gesture engine for input and an output engine. These elements work together, relying on WebGL, to provide the kind of smooth experience users demand from today’s apps, native, Web or otherwise.




Edited by Blaise McNamee
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