Mozilla Delivers Built-in HTML5 App Development Tool for Firefox

by Ostatic Staff - Jun. 24, 2014

If you work with web content at all, you're probably familiar with doing debugging and content editing directly from within a browser. If you're a Firefox user, you may also be very familiar with tools such as Firebug, which lets you do extensive debugging and development from within Firefox.

Now, Mozilla has announced a new toolset to take these kinds of capabilities to the next level.  Firefox Nightly release channel users can start testing WebIDE, a development environment for HTML5 apps built into Firefox.

According to Mozilla Hacks:

"Developers tell us that they are not sure how to start app development on the Web, with so many different tools and templates that they need to download from a variety of different sources. We’re solving that problem with WebIDE, built directly into Firefox. Instead of starting from zero we provide you with a functioning blueprint app with the click of a button. You then have all the tools you need to start creating your own app based on a solid foundation. WebIDE helps you create, edit, and test a new Web application right from your browser. It lets you install and test apps on Firefox OS devices and simulators and integrates the Firefox Developer Tools for seamless debugging and inspection across those devices. This is a first step towards debugging across various platforms and devices over WiFi using open remote debugging APIs."

After opening WebIDE you start creating by choosing from a set of example starter templates – and Mozilla is working with the community to build a variety of additional examples. You can help creating templates by visiting

Mozilla has delivered integrated development tools before, such as Bespin, but WebIDE looks more ambitious.

WebIDE is also designed to work with complementary tools. An API allows external editors to access advanced functionality in WebIDE – its runtime management, pushing applications to different devices and connecting Firefox Developer Tools. You can turn off the internal editor and leave WebIDE with a clean interface for managing runtimes and validating applications. 

For a detailed, visual introduction to how WebIDE works, take a look at this screencast.