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Facebook and FIOS

I have always dreamt of browsing internet and watching movies at the same time. Using tv tuner cards on laptop, digital tv over internet one could watch TV as well as browse internet from PC or laptop. But bringing a different experience, Verizon FIOS, has launched a bazaar of widgets on their FIOS service. For those who do not know, FIOS is the Fiber Optic Service for TV and Internet provided by Verizon. A series of widgets for Weather, Traffic, News Headlines, Sports Headlines, Facebook, Twitter, etc. fill up the catalog. Though not all the features are available on Facebook and Twitter, friends list and photo albums can be viewed. The interface is quite cool and colorful. It also has a on-screen keyboard for typing information with the TV remote.

Screenshots:

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Technology:

So, coming to the technical part of it, how are these widgets programmed? Verizon uses an open source programming language called Lua. Lua is a C like programming language, and has APIs for GUI, HTTP Network, Keyboard event handlers and a lot more. With an eclipse plugin developing Lua applications is also much easier.

It is also expected that Verizon would soon public the open source SDK to third party developers for widget development.

And more widgets to come soon for video sharing sites like Veoh, blip.tv and DailyMotion.

More on Lua soon!

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