119 iPad apps for admins, coders, and geeks
Stuff for web monkeys, iPad junkies, EE flunkies
Part three This – the third installment of apps for admins, coders and geeks – is our final foray into demonstrably useful apps for Apple's "magical and revolutionary" tablet.
Our first installment focused on iPad apps for sysadmins. Our second offered coders a collection of training tools, text editors, and other tasty bits. This time out, we've got web monkeys, iPad junkies, and EE flunkies in our sights, along with anyone interested in the end of life as we know it.
As before, we suggest that you take a quick look at our first go-round, and read our discussion on testing, ratings, and the suppression of high expectations for apps with such low prices.
It has been argued that devotees of the open source content-management platform Drupal can be likened to members of a cult. We think that's a wee bit overstated, but if you think you can pop three bucks and still maintain your objectivity, check out droo-puhl 101 HD ($2.99, five stars), an introductory training app with 20 videos showing you how to build your first Drupal website.
Over two hours of droo-puhl 101 HD's training videos can be your initiation into the Drupal cult
Maybe you're not yet ready to take on the a full-scale CMS-creation project. Maybe you are, in fact, a rank beginner when it comes to all thing webby. A good place to start might be Website Master - Learn HTML By Example ($1.99, three and a half stars), which will take you by the hand and explain such basics as HTML tags and syntax, all in a friendly interactive app.
After you've mastered the basics — well, after you mastered more than the mere basics — take a look at Web Services ($9.99), which will guide you to an understanding of XMl, SOAP, and JSON.
As the old saying goes, "Steal from the best; ignore the rest" — and a convenient way to crib ideas is to look at other sites' source code. Unfortunately, one of the weaknesses of the iPad's Safari browser is its lack of a View Source command. Fortunately, Code - Source Code Viewer ($1.99, two and a half stars) not only displays a site's source, but has syntax coloring and a search function.
iHTMLplus (free, three stars) lets you type in a URL and view the site's source code on the left of your iPad in landscape mode and a non-zoomable-but-pannable (is that a word?) web page on the right, but without the other niceties of Code - Source Code Viewer — but, hey, it's free.
The free viewer iHTMLplus displays code on the left and a non-zoomable page on the right
Source Viewer XL ($1.99, five stars) does much the same, but adds syntax coloring, plus CSS, link, and image info. If you want to look at more than mere source code, Web Analyzer (99¢) gives you a quick rundown on Flash content, scripts, images, frames, and the like.
But if you want to do more than simply examine code, you'll need an editor such as HTML Edit ($1.99, one and a half stars). Unfortunately, it's still a work in progress — as its developer says, "There's still work to be done, enhancements and improvements to be made." They've made a strong start though, so you might want to keep your eye on its release notes.
Markup for iPad ($9.99, two and a half stars) will let you connect to your website's over FTP and make simple text edits. It'll also render thumbnails of your pages and upload images from you photo library — but, like HTML Edit, seems to be off to a bit of a rough start. Web Page Developer ($5.99, three and a half stars) is another relatively ambitious work in progress, but its latest upgrade (version 2.5) has a strong features set and seems to have squashed a few nasty bugs.
Among the more popular editor and site-management tools is Gusto ($6.99, three and a half stars), an almost-there app that has a solid fan base, despite such niggles as its lack of syntax coloring and auto-wrap. In our experience it's a bit balky, but we're more generous than one reviewer, who faulted it for not including Dreamweaver-class capabilities. Note to complainer: Gusto is seven bucks; Dreamweaver is $399.
And then there's KyTekHTMLeditor ($9.99, two stars), which is a bit of an odd bird. It's not a true HTML editor — instead, it lets you create pages in a WYSIWYG interface. It's a bit bare-bones for its ten-buck price tag, although it does work directly with Google Docs.
And while you're entering code, if you can remember the HTML, ASCII, ISO/IEC 8859-1, and Unicode UTF8 codes for most any character you'll ever need, you won't need Entities HD (99¢, three stars). But if you're a normal human, you will. Quick, what the HTML for ∴? How about the Unicode for ♥?
Our memory isn't perfect — and neither is yours. That's why there's Entities
But there's more to web work than mere editing — checking your Google Analytics info with Analytics for iPad (free, two and a half stars), for example, or using Blasphemous robots.txt (99¢, three and a half stars) to create Robots Exclusion Protocol robots.txt files to help search-engine spiders to catgorize your website, and FTP Deluxe HD (99¢, two stars) to get your files to and from your FTP site.
Speaking of search-engine spiders, SEO Analyst (free, one and a half stars) is a quick-and-dirty way to search a web page for keywords and other info, and SEO Manager ($9.99) purports to be able to analyze your Google keyword rankings. As its developer boasts: "No Google API with useless shuffled results is used!"
Finally, there are of course a gaggle of other internet-related apps in the App Store. Check out, for example, the PuTTY-based pTerm — SSH, Telnet Client and Terminal Emulator ($4.99, three stars), and both SuperPing ($1.99, two and a half stars) and the minimalist iPing : Network Tool (99¢, three stars).
iPing turns your glitzy, multi-touch iPad into a dumb terminal with an added ping-time graph
And if you don't know what SSH, telnet, or ping are, you'll have no need for those three last apps, pobrecito.