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Gary Edwards

SXSW: Big Browsers Butt Heads - AppScout - 0 views

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    From AppScout: ... "For the third year in a row, leading minds from the major browsers got together at SXSW Interactive to spar with one another over issues like Web standards and openness. As in years past, Mozilla's Brendan Eich, Microsoft's Chris Wilson, Opera's Charles McCathieNevile, and moderator Arun Ranganathan (also from Mozilla) were present, and this year they were joined by Google's Darin Fisher.

    As always, Apple was absent from the panel. Wilson told me that Apple is active in the standards discussion, but the company's famously closed corporate policy prevents Apple reps from participating in panels like this (almost every laptop I saw in the room was a Mac, so apparently the policy hasn't hurt them much). In any case, Safari's WebKit was represented by Chrome (Fisher), which is also built on WebKit....."

    AppScout does a great job of collecting some of the best snippets to come out of this panel discussion. Really though, how can anyone have a browser discussion without edge of the Web WebKit device browsers? And then there's this: the discussions today isn't about "browsers". It's about RiA platforms and how browsers are used to launch rich internet applications. Microsoft has XAML-Silverlight. Adobe has AiR-WebKit-SWF. And the Open Web has WebKit-HTML+. That's the battle!
Gary Edwards

What the EU might force Microsoft to do : comment by gary.edwards - 0 views

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    I've pretty much stayed out of the EU action against Microsoft primarily because it misses the mark by so much. The browser is not the means by which Microsoft seeks to create a Web based monopoly. MSIE is a useful tool used to frustrate Web developers and systems providers, but we are way beyond the point where removing/replacing MSIE becomes an effective remedy to Microsoft monopolist abuses. Way beyond! There is however no doubt in my mind that the browser is going to be the portable WebOS of the future. The problem is that browser runtimes are also host for proprietary runtime plug-ins. Like MS Silverlight! Read on freind. My comments are three part, and posted down the line, somewhere around 183. Heavy on the WebKit stuff as usual! Look for "gary.edwards".
Gary Edwards

Design for Developers: Interactivity, animations, and AJAX - 0 views

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    Awesome commentary in the must read category. JC nails it; starting with "layout"! ....... "We were both part of the same team and he was creating some UI elements that I was to wire up. As I sat there (in awe) watching him work I realized that much of his considerable skill was rooted in fundamentals not unlike the art of programming. Of course, there are design skills that are intuitive that can't be "learned." But, that can also be said of the logical clarity found in a really elegant data model or a brilliant inheritance tree. I am certainly no designer, but I have observed the more creative among us for several years and have gained some insight into their world. In this article I'll share some basic principles that can help raise your design acumen and improve the experience of your users...... " Layout I'd like to attack my goal of imparting design wisdom by breaking the topic into four buckets. The first is layout.
Gary Edwards

The Struggle for the Soul of the Web: Flash and Silverlight challenge the Open Web - 0 views

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    Just because the web has been open so far doesn't mean that it will stay that way. Flash and Silverlight, arguably the two market-leading technology toolkits for rich media applications are not open. Make no mistake - Microsoft and Adobe aim to have their proprietary plug-ins, aka pseudo-browsers, become the rendering engines for the next generation of the Web.
Paul Merrell

Adobe Press Room: Adobe and ARM Accelerate Flash and AIR for ARM Platforms - 0 views

  • “ARM believes this partnership will develop optimized Adobe Flash and AIR implementations that will run on billions of devices from our partners such as pocket-sized mobile devices, mobile computing platforms, set-top boxes, digital TVs and automotive infotainment,” said Ian Drew, vice president, Marketing, at ARM
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    Yup. They're making noises about moving Flash and AIR into ARM-based appliances. This seems a sound strategic move for Adobe in response to Silverlight, drilling hard for the big computing market that already dwarfs the desktop computer market. It ain't just about the desktop and the Web anymore, folks.
Paul Merrell

Technology Review: Expanding the Mobile Web - 0 views

  • Today, in an effort to bring more of the Web to mobile devices, Adobe and microchip maker ARM, which powers 90 percent of mobile phones worldwide, have announced a collaboration to ensure that Adobe's software runs well on future ARM devices. Specifically, the companies say that Adobe's Flash Player 10 and AIR (a platform for building complex Web applications) will be compatible and optimized for the ARM chips available in 2009. While ARM is used in a huge number of mobile phones, the announcement has broader implications: the chips are also used in set-top boxes, mobile Internet devices, personal media players, and automotive platforms.
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    Adobe positioning AIR for a move into embedded systems? E.g., from Wikipedia: "Because of their power saving features, ARM CPUs are dominant in the mobile electronics market, where low power consumption is a critical design goal. Today, the ARM family accounts for approximately 75% of all embedded 32-bit RISC CPUs, making it one of the most widely used 32-bit architectures. ARM CPUs are found in most corners of consumer electronics, from portable devices (PDAs, mobile phones, media players, handheld gaming units, and calculators)." Don't miss page two of the linked article.
Gary Edwards

Convergence of Web, Mobile and Desktop Apps is the Next Phase: AJAX World RIA with Jere... - 0 views

  • For SOA applications, the best way to modernize is to componentize and extend the user experience aspect of the application that will in turn enable the applications composition and mashup.
  • While there are many ways that companies measure productivity, Nexaweb has found that the three key criteria for enabling the productivity driven enterprise are based on 1) cost savings resulting from reduced development time and application maintainability; 2) extending the value of existing applications with a future-proof architecture (adding RIA without breaking existing enterprise architecture); and 3) faster time to market by providing a consistent user experience across the various interfaces available throughout the organization.
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    While the last decade was focused on the Web, the next phase in the evolution of our industry will be on the convergence of Web, mobile and desktop applications and the ability to extend existing applications with these new technologies for a consistent user experience regardless of how and where the information is viewed,' says Nexaweb CTO Jeremy Chone
Gary Edwards

The Grand Convergence: Web + RIA + Widgets + Client/Server - 0 views

  • he architecture of the Widget engine divides the client technology into two parts, the engine and the widgets. The widget engine is usually a pretty large download.
  • The widget engine is really a wonderful architecture that gives you the power of the desktop (via the widget engine) and the management of the Web (via widget downloads).  Widget engines can out-perform RIA solutions and they can store larger data sets. 
  • Fit Client applications can be centrally managed, yet remain resident on the desktop. They can offer access to standard web content (e.g. HTML) without the need of a browser. Fit Clients can leverage the processing power and disc space of the client machine, but they can also offer more restrictive and secure environments than client/server platforms.
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    Excellent overview of where applications are going. Richard Monson-Haefel, (whom i met at the 2008 Web 2.0 Conference) explains the convergence of four emerging application models: Web Clients (Browsers), RiA Clients, Client/Server, and Widget Engines. He comes up with a convergence point called "Fit Client", offering Adobe Air as the leading example. Richard walks through each application model, discussing limitations and advantages. Good stuff, especially this comment: "The widget engine is really a wonderful architecture that gives you the power of the desktop (via the widget engine) and the management of the Web (via widget downloads).  Widget engines can out-perform RIA solutions and they can store larger data sets.    The limitation of Widget engines is not in their architecture, it is that they have been designed for applications with fairly weak capabilities compared to client/server. Widgets tend to be single-purpose applications with limited access to the native operating system. That said, the widget architecture itself - the separation of the platform from the applications - is important. It makes it possible to create applications (widgets) that are portable across operating systems and are packaged for easy download and installation. "
Gary Edwards

The Next Battle for the Desktop : Portable RiA Runtime Engines - 0 views

shared by Gary Edwards on 06 Nov 08 - Cached
  • The choices for desktop runtimes will be more flexible and will largely be driven by the type of applications rather than the type of platform. It’s likely that desktop computers will eventually ship with two or three different runtimes and that consumers will be more or less ignorant of which one they are using. What will determine the success of one desktop runtime over others will be the execution and development environment. Desktop runtimes that provide the most processing power, speed of execution, and security will dominate. In this scenario the end-user is no longer the customer, it's independent software developers and Integrated Software Vendors that are of primary importance. It’s the developers who will choose the platform on which they create cross-platform applications – the consumer will be largely ignorant of the choices made.  With the exception of download and install differences, the applications will look the same to end-users.
    • Gary Edwards
       
      "It's independent application developers and integrated software vendors that determine which RiA platforms will prevail. Will this group value "cross-platform" RiA? Or will they go for integrated cloud services designed to drive down the cost of development and implementation? Integration into existing business systems i think will trump cross-platform concerns. For sure Microsoft is betting the farm on this.
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    The computer desktop - as was the case with newspapers before there was radio and radio before there was television - has become the high ground from which empires are built. While dominance of the desktop has been maintained for the last decade or more by Microsoft, which at one point represented 95% of the desktops used by all consumers, the future is less certain.it will not be a single operating system that prevails. In the end it will be desktop runtimes that become the most important platforms A desktop runtime is a platform that provides a consistent runtime environment regardless of the underlying operating system. Desktop runtimes are already extending beyond their primary target platform, the desktop, to the Fourth Screen - smart phones.
Gary Edwards

The Silverlight RiA Platform : Replacing the desktop from the cloud - 0 views

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    In the future application developers won't care what desktop operating system you use, they will only care which Fit Client platform is the most pervasive. This is what Adobe AIR, Microsoft Silverlight, Google Gears and Curl are fighting for. Nothing short of the future of desktop and RIA development. Microsoft brings with it a huge ecosystem of .NET developers - potentially millions of developers already skilled in WPF, XAML and C#. That's a pretty scary for others in the Fit Client arena. Right now the future of the desktop is completely open. Anyone with enough clout could win the desktop - effectively usurping Microsoft Windows dominate position.
Gary Edwards

MS finally to bring Office to the Web, Windows smart phones - NYTimes.com - 0 views

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    Last week, Microsoft reported that revenue from the Microsoft business division (MBD) grew 20% year over year to US$4.95 billion in the most recent quarter. That is more than Microsoft's client division, which makes Windows. Most of MBD's revenue comes from Office, though Microsoft doesn't break out an exact percentage. Windows has 1 billion users. Office has only 500 million. Consumers will be able to subscribe to Office Web and even get it at a discount price, provided they are willing to view Web ads. Business customers seeking "more manageability and control" will be able to buy subscriptions to Office Web similar to the subscription Microsoft offers for a bundle combining Web-based versions of Exchange and SharePoint. That costs $3 per user per month. Enterprises may also get Office Web through conventional volume licensing software contracts, which will allow them to either install Office on desktop and other client PCs, or have Microsoft host it on their server. Unlike non-Microsoft products (Google Docs - ZOHO - BuzzWord), Office Web will guarantee that the "viewing experience is fantastic" and that formatting and meta data from Office documents don't "get munged up,". Office Web will provide a superior "end-to-end solution" by letting users view and edit documents whenever they want to, including browsers such as Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari and Windows Mobile smart phones. The Office Web focus will be on business productivity according to Chris Capossela. The Office Web experience can be enhanced by Silverlight (Microsoft RiA).
Gary Edwards

The Next-Gen Web: HTML5 - Will We Ever See A Real Standard? - 0 views

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    "...some browsers and plug-ins were adopting storage-related API's that are a part of the new HTML5 draft specification. While Gears, Opera and Webkit have implemented structured storage API's, the remainder of the HTML5 spec currently remains mostly unimplemented and also in a state of flux. HTML5 is a super-sized effort to bring all the browsers under a single, standard markup language and set of API's - but with Microsoft, Adobe and others racing ahead with their own next-gen web technologies, will we ever see a real HTML5 standard?" This article was posted in August of 2008, before the surprise release of the WebKit based "Google Chrome" .... the WebKit RiA alternative to Adobe AiR and Microsoft Silverlight
Gary Edwards

WebKit: The 21st century mobile - desktop application foundation - Software Development... - 0 views

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    Well well well. The experts are finally starting to get it. WebKit is extraordinary, not as a browser, but as the "Open Web" foundation for web application (RiA) development that spans device and desktop.
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    The vastly improved hardware and network throughput are not the primary drivers of this sea change. "The biggest jolt to the mobile Web development experience, in my view, has been the iPhone. Its implementation of mobile Safari, while imperfect, has given handsets the real Internet, rather than a hobbled, niched version that was typical in devices that preceded it." What that means for the future, according to O'Grady, is that the mobile application space "will mirror the development on the client, honestly. It will evolve into a platform barely distinguishable, in many respects, from the traditional desktop browser experience."
Gary Edwards

Could There Be More To Google, Android, Chrome, & Gears Than Meets The Eye? - David... - 0 views

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    One of the best ways to create that perception (and reality) is to get more mobile developers building for the Web instead of any specific platform. It's a win for developers looking to reach the broader market. It's a win for end-users who shouldn't be forced into picking a specific platform or network (eg: iPhone/AT&T) just to get access to certain applications. It's a win for Google. Who is it not good for? You don't have to look far.
Gary Edwards

InformationWeek 500 Trends: Web 2.0, Globalization, Virtualization, And More -- Informa... - 0 views

  • Web 2.0 is one of the trendiest ideas in tech, for instance, but there are entire industries where not one company in our survey cites it as a top productivity improver. Meantime, adoption of some more tactical technologies, such as WAN optimization, has exploded in the last year.
  • critical trends, from Web 2.0 to globalization to virtualization
  • the momentum is behind wikis, blogs, and social networking, though primarily among co-workers.
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  • When it comes to using Web 2.0 collaboration tools
  • Use of hosted collaboration applications--from calendars to document sharing--hit a reasonably high 60%.
  • Asked what technologies have improved productivity the most, only 14% overall cite "encouraging the use of Web 2.0 technologies.
  • One possible bright spot in our survey is that implementing new collaboration tools, such as Microsoft SharePoint, is cited more often than any other--48%--as a technology leveraged to improve productivity.
  • at satisfied companies, business units rather than IT departments are much more likely to drive the selection of Web 2.0 technologies. At companies dissatisfied with Web 2.0, IT is more likely to take the lead.
  • There's more to Web 2.0 than collaboration tools like wikis and other employee-facing tools, and there's interesting progress on the critical back-end layer that enables Web 2.0. One is mashups; 38% of InformationWeek 500 companies are combining Web and enterprise content in new ways. The other is in Web 2.0 development tools.
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    What the InformationWeek 500 data tells us about the use of emerging technologies.
Gary Edwards

Microsoft's Response to Google Chrome... - Google Docs - 0 views

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    Matt Assay has posted an interesting article arguing the point of view that Google Chrome will have a difficult time catching up Microsoft SharePoint. While everyone is moving to the Web, many will be surprised ot find that Microsoft is already there. Very surprised.
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    Good article from Matt Assay
Gary Edwards

Why Mozilla is committed to Gecko as WebKit popularity grows: Page 1 - 0 views

  • One of the primary reasons for the enormous complexity of the Gecko code base is that it aims to provide much more than just an HTML renderer. Mozilla's early goals were extremely ambitious—the original Mozilla application suite included a browser, a complete mail and newsgroup program, a web design tool, and an IRC client. In addition to rendering HTML, Gecko also provides a versatile XML-based user interface rendering framework called XUL that was used extensively in those applications. XUL is still used today to create the Firefox user interface, and it facilitates that browser's support for extensions, which are regarded by many enthusiasts as one of the most valuable features offered by Firefox.
  • XPCOM, a powerful component system
  • Gecko 1.9 uses the cross-platform Cairo rendering framework.
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  • reflow algorithm
  • Firefox 4 and replaces XPCOM reference counting with real garbage collection
  • support for some CSS 3 features that are implemented in WebKit.
  • TraceMonkey engine landed in recent nightly builds and will likely be included in 3.1; it massively boosts JavaScript performance
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    The consensus of the developers who are using WebKit is clear: it's an outstanding rendering engine that lends itself to an extremely diverse assortment of practical uses. It is everywhere, and it is gaining traction at a very impressive rate. That traction is causing some developers to question whether Mozilla's Gecko rendering engine is still relevant.
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    Historical walkthrough comparing two great rendering engines (layout); Mozilla Gecko and WebKit.
Gary Edwards

SitePen Blog » Inside the Dojo Toolbox - 0 views

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    Great insight into Adobe AiR and the transition from browser based surfing to web application building.
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    Building the Dojo Toolbox allowed us to dive into Adobe® AIR™, and to create a blended toolchain of JavaScript, PHP, Python and Rhino (JavaScript on the Java Virtual Machine) for developing an amazing desktop application using open web technologies. One of the most noticeable things you'll see when moving from typical browser-based development to AIR is that you only have one browser to worry about. Dojo does a great job of masking browser JavaScript API differences, but there are still enough differences in CSS and other aspects of application development that it is somewhat refreshing to only have one platform to develop again. Also, since AIR includes WebKit, it has one of the fastest JavaScript implementations around and offers numerous useful experimental CSS properties that you can use in the AIR context. Apple has invested a lot in WebKit development, and AIR will naturally inherit those benefits when they next upgrade the included WebKit.
Gary Edwards

InternetNews Realtime IT News - The Next Wave in Collaborative Software - 0 views

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    There were three must see demonstrations at Office 2.0; Adobe Genesis, Joblogs and GE. Genesis and Joblogs are stunning examples of what RiA will mean int he future. GE offered a rather extraordinary example of how collaborative computing changes everything in the workplace. GE' Suk made an interesting statement, "Collaboration is simply a digital version of how a workgroup "works" a business process." Done right, collaboration becomes the business process.
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    RiA is making the leap from web design to web application by first reinventing the end users "workspace-workgroup" experience. "... The winds of change are blowing through collaborative software, and they're blowing pretty hard. Here at the Office 2.0 conference, Adobe Systems and Joblogs previewed their approaches, which are strikingly similar. They both offer real time collaboration. Both use mash-ups and provide ease of use well beyond today's collaborative systems, which Joblogs founder Steve Ireland described as "workspace 1.0." Both are aimed at the enterprise and seek to provide context around the user's workspace, doing mash-ups (define) of contact databases, e-mail, calendars, photos, and task lists, although Joblogs' application also offers blogs.
Gary Edwards

The real reason Google is making Chrome | Computerworld Blogs - 0 views

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    Good analysis by Stephen Vaughan-Nichols. He gets it right. Sort of. Stephen believes that Chrome is desinged to kill MSOffice. Maybe, but i think it's way too late for that. IMHO, Chrome is designed to keep Google and the Open Web in the game. A game that Microsoft is likely to run away with. Microsoft has built an easy to use transiton bridge form MSOffice desktop centric "client/server" computing model to a Web centirc but proprietary RiA-WebStack-Cloud model. In short, there is an on going great transtion of traditional client/server apps to an emerging model we might call client/ WebStack-Cloud-RiA /server computing model. As the world shifts from a Web document model to one driven by Web Applications, there is i believe a complimentary shift towards the advantage Micorsoft holds via the desktop "client/server" monopoly. For Microsoft, this is just a transtion. Painful from a monopolist profitability view point - but unavoidably necessary. The transition is no doubt helped by the OOXML <> XAML "Fixed/flow" Silverlight ready conversion component. MS also has a WebStack-Cloud (Mesh) story that has become an unstoppable juggernaut (Exchange/SharePoint/SQL Server as the WebSTack). WebKit based RiA challengers like Adobe Apollo, Google Chrome, and Apple SproutCore-Cocoa have to figure out how to crack into the great transition. MS has succeeded in protecting their MSOffice monopoly until such time as they had all the transtion pieces in place. They have a decided advantage here. It's also painfully obvious that the while the WebKit guys have incredible innovation on their side, they are still years behind the complete desktop to WebStack-RiA-Cloud to device to legacy servers application story Microsoft is now selling into the marketplace. They also are seriously lacking in developer tools. Still, the future of the Open Web hangs in the balance. Rather than trying to kill MSOffice, i would think a better approach would be that of trying to
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    There are five reasons why Google is doing this, and, if you read the comic book closely - yes, I'm serious - and you know technology you can see the reasons for yourself. These, in turn, lead to what I think is Google's real goal for Chrome.
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    I'm still keeping the door open on a suspicion that Microsoft may have planned to end the life of MS Office after the new fortress on the server side is ready. The code base is simply too brittle to have a competitive future in the feature wars. I can't get past my belief that if Microsoft saw any future in the traditional client-side office suite, it would have been building a new one a decade ago. Too many serious bugs too deeply buried in spaghetti code to fix; it's far easier to rebuild from the ground up. Word dates to 1984, Excel to 1985, Powerpoint to 1987, All were developed for the Mac, ported years later to Windows. At least Word is still running a deeply flawed 16-bit page layout engine. E.g., page breaks across subdocuments have been broken since Word 1.0. Technology designed to replace yet still largely defined by its predecessor, the IBM Correcting Selectric electro-mechanical typewriter. Mid-80s stand-alone, non-networked computer technology in the World Wide Web era? Where's the future in software architecture developed two decades ago, before the Connected World? I suspect Office's end is near. Microsoft's problem is migrating their locked-in customers to the new fortress on the server side. The bridge is OOXML. In other words, Google doesn't have to kill Office; Microsoft will do that itself. Giving the old cash cow a face lift and fresh coat of lipstick? That's the surest sign that the old cow's owner is keeping a close eye on prices in the commodity hamburger market while squeezing out the last few buckets of milk.
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