Product Update for Appmaker and Popcorn Maker

Mozilla

As Webmaker for Android nears the end of its time in beta and prepares for official launch, we wanted to share an update on Mozilla’s other tools for teaching the Web: Appmaker, Popcorn Maker, Thimble and X-Ray Goggles. We discussed the future of these tools in a May blog post, but after further discussion with the community we have updated our plans.

As previously mentioned, Thimble and X-Ray Goggles are powerful and popular tools among educators for teaching web literacy skills, and can now be found at https://teach.mozilla.org/tools/. Later this summer, we’ll be releasing an updated version of Thimble with improved capabilities, so stay tuned!

As our tools evolve, we will no longer support Appmaker and Popcorn Maker. Instead, we’re focusing our efforts on Webmaker for Android, which empowers smartphone users to create local content and read, write and participate online.

Both Appmaker and Popcorn Maker will remain available until Wednesday, Sept. 30, after which they will be inaccessible. We are no longer able to provide bug fixes and user support for these tools. However, users will still be able to access makes created with these tools in a read-only capacity, even after Sept. 30. To do so, visit webmaker.org/me and sign in. And as open source projects, the code for these tools will continue to be available for reuse at https://github.com/mozilla/popcorn.webmaker.org and https://github.com/mozilla-appmaker/appmaker.

If you have any questions, email us at help@webmaker.org, or reach us on Twitter @Webmaker.

35 responses

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  1. Dhanesh Sabane wrote on ::

    So what will be the alternatives for Appmaker and Popcorn Maker?

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Dhanesh, users can try the new Webmaker Android app (mzl.la/webmaker) and look forward to an enhanced version of Thimble later this summer. While not all of the capabilities of Appmaker and Popcorn Maker are included in these two new tools, they both provide a hands-on way to teach and learn the Web.

      Reply

  2. Theo Kuechel wrote on ::

    Couple of comments/ questions

    1) Not all potential makers have android devices – is this restricting potential uptake?

    2) Also – I understand Mozilla may not want to develop Popcorn Maker further – but why not leave ‘as is’ instead of disabling make?

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Theo, thanks for writing.

      We built Webmaker as a tool to empower mobile-first Web users and, based on our research, we determined Android was the best platform for reaching these users. But, Webmaker projects can be viewed by anyone in a web browser and on mobile or desktop.

      It’s been a very difficult decision to sunset Popcorn Maker — it’s a tool we’re proud of, and one many students and educators have come to rely on both in and out of the classroom. At present, it’s a matter of resources. With the launch of our new Webmaker app of Android, we simply don’t have the ability to keep Popcorn Maker running smoothly. However: Popcorn Maker is open source, so we hope a like-minded organization might build on it.

      While we don’t have an exact substitute, we will be rolling out a new, enhanced version of Mozilla Thimble this summer, with a focus on remixing projects and creating web pages. You also may want to visit https://teach.mozilla.org/activities/.

      Reply

  3. Animesh Mishra wrote on :

    dude,
    According to you, the source code for Popcorn maker is at this link: https://github.com/mozilla/popcorn_maker

    But, then what’s this?
    https://github.com/mozilla/popcorn.webmaker.org

    Also, the link that you provided above , after visiting the repo, when I click on ‘butter’, I am redirected to https://github.com/mozilla/butter
    and, the butter page says:

    “Development has been moved to mozilla/popcorn.webmaker.org. This repository will continue to exist for historical purposes.”

    This suggests, that the link you shared here, is linked to yet another repo that’s already been dead and moved to another place.

    All of that is sso confusing man!

    Again, why is there no specific info about what is what and where, I wonder! What about labelling what is what, so that everyone can better understand these stuffs?
    Is there a link/url from where, I can supposedly download the entire source code (I mean ENTIRE including everything) at one go?

    Thanks for building such great stuffs as Popcorn maker and siblings. I am a fan! :)

    — Animesh

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Animesh, thanks for writing.

      You’re correct — the most up-to-date repo for Popcorn Maker is mozilla/popcorn.webmaker.org. Sorry for the confusion! We’ll update this blog post accordingly.

      Reply

  4. Steve wrote on :

    What happens to all of our work?

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Steve, users will be able to access makes created with these tools in a read-only capacity, even after Sept. 30. To do so, visit webmaker.org/me and sign in.

      Also, we’ll be migrating existing Thimble projects over to the new Thimble platform.

      Reply

  5. Paul Benham wrote on :

    You mention that un updated version of Thimble will contain some of the features of Popcorn Maker. Can you tell me when the updated version of Thimble will be available and also whether it will have the ability to annotate over video clips (as Popcorn Maker did). If not do you know of any other web based service/app that will allow annotations over web video?

    Thanks

    Paul Benham

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Paul,

      We launched the new Thimble this past Monday — you can find it at thimble.mozilla.org.

      Thimble does not allow for remixing videos, however. For a tool similar to Popcorn Maker, you may want to try https://www.zaption.com/.

      Reply

      1. Paul Benham wrote on :

        Thanks for the quick reply. Zaption looks like it has all the features we are looking for – great suggestion.

        Paul

        Reply

  6. mier beja wrote on :

    hi,

    i’m a design teacher in the philippines and have been an avid fan of your app maker site. my students have been loving the use of app maker as their favourite tool in designing mobile apps for their summative task.
    i wonder if it would be possible for them to still be able to “run” or “test” their created apps thru sending the url / links even after september 30?

    part of their design task is to be able to have their apps “tested” by potential users in the community by having them “run” the app and see if it works for their mobile devices/ desktops.

    will it be possible for them to be able to do so? perhaps all the way until the end of october?

    thanks so much and more power!

    -ms. beja

    Reply

  7. Jasmen Abd-El-Samie wrote on :

    Hello, so will the app still function even after september 30 or will the functions not work?

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Jasmen,

      Neither Popcorn Maker nor Appmaker will be available after Sept. 30. But, individual projects created using those apps will remain accessible in a read-only mode.

      Reply

      1. mier beja wrote on :

        just to further clarify, does the “read-only mode” mean that the url/links could still be sent to users and those respective users could “navigate” through the app separately? with the various functions of the buttons working as created?

        thanks again,
        mier

        Reply

        1. Webmaker wrote on :

          Hi Mier,

          Yes, Appmaker makes will continue to function after Sept. 30, and you will also be able to share the URLs. However, students will not be able to make changes to their projects, or create new ones.

          Reply

  8. Bernardo Ramos wrote on :

    Noooooo!

    AppMaker is so Cool!

    I wanna use it in my computer, not in a mobile device.

    Its way of dealing with signals is so nice.

    Please keep it alive!

    Reply

    1. Bernardo Ramos wrote on :

      We could integrate it with Arduino, serving as an interface. Maybe with littleBits too.

      We could use sockets or nanomsg to communicate to other devices and apps. Some way to send and receive the appmaker signals.

      We could use HTTP requests (GET and POST) to send and receive data.

      This app is really powerful

      Reply

    2. Bernardo Ramos wrote on :

      I suggest to keep the appmaker online until the mobile version is available.

      Suggestions for new Bricks:

      -Switch Gate: working like the “switch” operator in programming languages
      -Math operations. A counter that adds the value received to the accumulator. Operations: add,subtract,multiply,division… With an input signal to clear/reset the counter
      -Concatenation: join strings, join configured strings with the received from a signal and outputs the result. It can also use formatting like in “printf”.

      Bug: the Alternate Gate cannot be selected once it is on the device/screen.

      Reply

      1. Webmaker wrote on :

        Hi Bernardo, thanks for the great ideas! Unfortunately, there isn’t a mobile version of Appmaker in the works right now. But the tool is fully open source, for those interested in adopting it: https://github.com/mozilla-appmaker/appmaker

        Reply

  9. Brion Vibber wrote on ::

    Note that a standalone version of the Popcorn editor has been in the works as https://github.com/mozilla/popcorn-editor — maintenance will be moving over to Wikimedia Foundation where we’re also very interested in getting this going! We’ll be doing some presentations and a work sprint at WikiConference USA next weekend in Washington DC – http://wikiconferenceusa.org/wiki/2015/Main_Page

    Reply

    1. Teresa MacKinnon wrote on :

      any updates on the progress of popcorn editor with wikimedia? This is a really useful tool and we would hate to lose it (speaking on behalf of language educators and open ed sig UK). As you can see here http://videoforall.eu/remix/ (part of a European video in language teaching project).

      Reply

  10. jon wrote on :

    hi, i am little bit confused to set these project on window machine , can anyone help me, along with flow chart

    thanks

    Reply

    1. Webmaker wrote on :

      Hi Jon, how exactly can we help? Are you looking to use the tools in a browser?

      Reply

  11. Victor wrote on ::

    Where can i find more info on how to use this tool are there any videos any help will be appreciated

    Reply

    1. Mozilla wrote on :

      Hi Victor,

      Which tool in particular are you seeking help with?

      Reply

  12. Victor wrote on ::

    mozilla app maker https://apps.webmaker.org/designer

    Reply

    1. Mozilla wrote on :

      Hi Victor,

      Mozilla no longer supports Appmaker.

      However, users are still able to access makes created with Appmaker in a read-only capacity — to do so, visit webmaker.org/me and sign in.

      And as an open source project, the code for Appmaker is available for reuse at https://github.com/mozilla-appmaker/appmaker.

      Reply

      1. Victor wrote on ::

        Ok got it thanks for the fast reply

        Reply

  13. Jeffy and Meese Corp wrote on ::

    Hello. We are a company who has been using your app maker for the past 2 months (don’t worry about copyright its a 8th grade company and for a 8th grade invention project). We have been using the application and it was very good and helpful but we had a problem publishing it. And now when we go to the site, it says its no longer there. Your app maker has certain applications other sites don’t have so if you can please tell us where to find it or find a similar website please tell us. Thank you -Jeffy&MeeseCorp

    Reply

    1. Mozilla wrote on :

      Hi there,

      Firstly, thank you for using Mozilla’s tools for teaching the Web!

      While we don’t have an exact substitute for Appmaker, you can try the similar, free educational tools here: teach.mozilla.org/tools

      Reply

  14. Sarah Brown wrote on :

    Hi,

    I have been using Appmaker with my class to create their own apps and whilst I read that you were stopping support for site, I was not aware that it would be deleted. My class are halfway through their apps, is there any possible way to complete them?
    If not, can we still view what they have done?
    Thanks in advance for any help!

    Reply

    1. Mozilla wrote on :

      Hi Sarah, thanks for writing — and apologies for any inconvenience.

      Students can still view their creations in a read-only capacity. To do so, visit webmaker.org/me and sign in. If you have any trouble, send us an email at help@webmaker.org.

      You can also try Mozilla’s other free, educational tools by visiting https://teach.mozilla.org/tools/

      Reply

  15. Spy wrote on :

    Appmaker was awesome!!! Why remove it?!

    Reply

  16. rob wrote on ::

    This is too bad – popcorn maker was a useful app.

    Reply

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