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webOS Open Source Edition For Developers


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On March 19th, LG introduced  with the intention of opening up webOS again to the world of development to move beyond TVs. This is the second time an open-source version of webOS has been released, the first coming under the failed tenure of HP back in 2011. 

LG Chief Technology Officer Dr. I.P. Park. “webOS has come a long way since then and is now a mature and stable platform ready to move beyond TVs.”

webOS Open Source Edition Architecture

The following figure shows the overall architecture of webOS Open Source Edition (OSE). webOS OSE consist of a set of layers: Core Applications, Application Framework, Managers & Services, Base Components, and BSP/Kernel.

webOS Open Source Edition Architecture

Core Applications

  • webOS OSE has Core applications as the top layer and this layer includes System UI and System app.
  • System UI includes apps that are related to the basic user interface, such as Home Launcher and Notification. These apps are usually implemented using QML.
  • System app includes Settings app and web browser. Settings app is used to control the system properties and implemented using Enact. As a web browser, the Chromium browser is used.

Application Framework

  • To help developers creating better apps and services, webOS OSE provides enhanced options and environments compared to developing solely with HTML5, JavaScript, or CSS. The web app framework Enact, which is equivalent to jQuery, and Software Development Kit (SDK) are provided.
  • Enact
  • Enact is a web app framework optimized for developing web apps for webOS OSE. For more information and structure of Enact, refer to Enact developer site.
  • Enact is also an open source project and is provided separately from webOS OSE.

SDK

The SDK provides a development environment for web apps and services. In this release of webOS OSE, we provide a CLI-based SDK for developing and installing web apps and services. Web apps can be packaged with services that are developed using Node.js. For more details on development/packaging of web apps and services, see Command Line Interface.

Managers & Services

  • Managers & Services layer includes the following components.
  • System and Application Manager
  • System and Application Manager (SAM) oversees the behavior of apps. SAM manages each app throughout its lifecycle, including the installation, launch, termination, and removal of the app.

There are two types of apps in webOS Open Source Edition: native app and web app. In case of a web app, actual launching and management are performed by Web Application Manager as described below.

Web Application Manager

Web Application Manager (WAM) is responsible for launching and managing web apps. In addition, WAM performs CPU usage optimization, status monitoring and recovery processing, and access privileges management, all based on the running status of web apps.

Luna Surface Manager

Luna Surface Manager (LSM) is a component that works as a graphics manager. LSM displays graphical elements on the screen, manages the composition of these elements, and performs the event handling for input devices such as keyboard and pointer. LSM is also responsible for the execution and management of System UI, such as Home Launcher and Notification. LSM is implemented using Qt, and System UI is implemented using QML.

Activity Manager

Activity Manager is responsible for managing and executing activities requested from services. An activity is requested along with a specific condition, and it is triggered when the condition is met. You can configure the activity to perform tasks such as automatic execution of specific services, callback requests, and so on.

uMediaServer

uMediaServer (uMS) is a module that works as a server for the webOS media framework. uMS provides interfaces for media playback, manages resources, pipelines, and their policies, and manages the lifecycle of the media player.

Base Components

Base Components layer includes the following components.

  • LS2
  • LS2, also called Luna Bus, is a system bus used by webOS OSE. LS2 manages the interface registration and invocation required for the interconnection among apps and services. Originally based on D-bus, LS2 has been enhanced to optimize the performance for embedded device environment.

Web Engine

webOS OSE uses Chromium as the web engine. A web engine is the module that loads and parses a web app (or web page) consisting of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, and performs all tasks required to represent the web app on the screen, such as layering and rendering. Currently the web runtime environment of webOS OSE is implemented according to the multi-process model of Chromium. Therefore, each web app is run as a separate independent process.

Chromium also includes browser logics a.k.a. Chromium browser which webOS OSE provides as the default browser app.

DB8

DB8 is an embedded JSON database that supports data storing and retrieving in the structure of key-value store. webOS OSE uses LevelDB as the back-end database. The default service associated with DB8 is the com.webos.db. The com.webos.tempdb, which allows you to configure temporary storage in memory, is also provided.

Node.js

The service framework based on Node.js is provided so that you can implement services with JavaScript language. Node.js is a JavaScript framework that is typically run on a server. In webOS OSE, Node.js has been built in to facilitate service development. For more information on developing services based on Node.js, see JS Services.

BSP/Kernel

BSP/Kernel layer consists of several components to support Raspberry Pi 3. Typically, it provides evdev for event processing, Mesa for graphics support, and Wi-Fi and wired LAN for connectivity.

Except as noted, this content is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 and sample code is licensed under Apache License 2.0.

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