Matteo Spinelli is writing a much simpler HTML5 game (word puzzle) -- but specifically for the iPad, and without employing a full screen canvas. His goal:
The purpose of this experiment is to develop an HTML game built on DOM and not inside a full screen canvas. I want to find out if you can get a decent game that feels 100% native using just HTML. Also I want to keep the door open to Android devices and older iDevices and iOS versions, and none of them are particularly good at canvas.
This is pretty practical, and the results should be pretty interesting.
One of the first problems Matteo encountered was the database issue: word puzzles require dictionaries so large that an indexed database (necessary for speed) would take more space than Web SQL permits. Matteo's solution? Don't load the index the whole dictionary at once.
Another problem was just how to avoid the Canvas. Right now Matteo doesn't have a solution (he tried and wasn't sure about AppMobi), but he'll figure this out in later posts.
Matteo also (ambitiously) decided to avoid jQuery, specifically in order to optimize -- but more on this later in the series.
The full project-inception post includes a more detailed outline of the project, and some more technical details, but already the idea looks great and the pre-project planning sound. If you're thinking of developing HTML5 games for the iPad, keep your eyes on this series.