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Use Mozilla Webmaker to Create Things on the Web

Wednesday - October 3rd, 2012

Written by: Tristan Pelligrino

Use Mozilla Webmaker to Create Things on the Web

In a nutshell, Mozilla Webmaker is an initiative sponsored by the Mozilla Foundation that provides the world with web development tools. The site aims to make web development easy for anyone to learn and use. With Mozilla’s goal to move people from simply consuming the web to creating the web, the organization put together a program to help people learn and participate in making new things for the Internet. The site provides tools, sample projects and an extensive community for people to learn from.

Mozilla Webmaker Tools

Mozilla Webmaker offers tools (100% freeware) that anyone can use to build creative projects on the web. These are the first tools they have available, with many more still in the works:

  1. Popcorn is a video authoring tool that allows anyone to remix and create video using clips and live video. It gives filmmakers and web developers a common platform on which to collaborate and share ideas. In essence, it is a technology for HMTL5 web development that puts an event system in place for media clips. If you’ve ever used YouTube’s online video editing capabilities then you might get a sense of what Popcorn is all about.
  2. X-Ray Goggles allows anyone to remix, make and publish web pages with a simple click. The name of the tool refers to its ability to see through a web page into its underlying HTML and CSS code so that you can copy and then alter code from any website (i.e. remix the webpage) and then share your creation with the world.
  3. Mozilla Thimble is possibly the most flexible tool yet as it presents an easy interface for creating HTML code, previewing it, and then hosting it online immediately. No need to install any program, and no hunting around for a place to host the content.

Mozilla Webmaker Projects

As a way to introduce people to web development technologies and make it easy for them to experiment and play with the tools, Mozilla Webmaker provides a sampling of projects that anyone can copy and adapt into their own. For example, one of the video projects that can be remixed is the fun Robot Invasion, which uses a bunch of public domain videos of aliens and robots that can be used in a creative presentation. One can also make their own games using JavaScript technology or put together a pop-up video or even create a professional-looking newscast complete with video footage and text effects.

The idea is to use these projects as inspirational jump off points for people to see what is possible using Webmaker tools.

Mozilla Webmaker Community

Perhaps the strongest aspect of the entire Webmaker project is the community that is built around these tools. People with varied talents and different backgrounds have all come together to learn and most importantly to teach newbies about web development technology. Thus, you see teachers with their students, journalists, filmmakers, programmers, and even simple bloggers connecting at meetings and learning sessions.

Summary

Ultimately, the web is meant for much more than sharing links. Ideally, every single person contributes on the web and is responsible for creating the things that will shape our future. We say it here often…Everyone has a story. What’s yours?

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