March 17, 2005 4:00 AM PST

Will Ajax help Google clean up?

In the race to build the Web of the future, some developers are reaching back to the past.

Start-ups and industry giants such as Microsoft continue to devise newfangled systems for delivering desktop-like applications over the Web. But search giant Google has taken a different path, using older technology to build its newest applications such as Google Maps and Gmail.

That's prompted developers to take a second look at old-hat technologies that have been kicking around on the Web since the 1990s, such as JavaScript and Dynamic HTML.

News.context

What's new:
Google's popular map and e-mail sites have reignited interest in old-hat technologies that have been kicking around on the Web since the 1990s.

Bottom line:
If technology that works in the current generation of Web browsers is indeed good enough for powerful, scalable Web-based applications, it could be a potential threat to Microsoft, Flash and Java.

More stories on this topic

"Suddenly you've got a company like Google that has shown to a mass audience that rich Internet applications have a tremendous benefit to the end user," said David Temkin, chief technology officer of Laszlo Systems, a start-up whose Web application system underlies EarthLink's new e-mail Web site. "The difference between Google Maps and any other map site is not subtle--it's almost a different product category. And the same is true of Gmail."

Those older technologies--such as the JavaScript scripting language, the Cascading Style Sheets recommendation by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) for applying styles to multiple Web pages, and other coding bells and whistles--are sometimes grouped under the marketing term Dynamic HTML, or DHTML.

The interest isn't driven by some dot-com nostalgia. Proponents argue that these older technologies are good enough to do the job and that support for them is already embedded in common Web browsers.

Developers have filled their blogs with debate over a recent Feb. 18 posting by Jesse Garrett, co-founder of San Francisco consultancy Adaptive Path, who coined the acronym Ajax to promote the idea of using "Asynchronous JavaScript + XML" as a way of building Web applications with freely available technologies.


Bloggers have nitpicked at the term, and Google engineers refer to their coding technique simply as JavaScript. But in just a month, "Ajax" has gained currency with the recent flurry of blog postings and a story about it in The Wall Street Journal.

"While I'm not usually a big fan of new acronyms, I'm happy to see this Ajax idea emerging," said Toni Schneider, product manager in Yahoo's platform engineering group and former CEO of Oddpost, which Yahoo acquired last year. "Someone's given a name to what we've been working on for years, to the idea of using JavaScript and moving it to the next level."

If technology that works in the current generation of Web browsers is indeed good enough for powerful, scalable Web-based applications, that could result in reduced demand for everything from Laszlo Systems' tools, Macromedia's Flash and Flex-based offerings, Sun Microsystems' Java-based applications, and for Microsoft's planned

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72 comments

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Actually the story is more about the success of XML
The success of JavaScript and CSS stylesheets has a lot to do with its ability to process XML and XHTML. As long as HTML was non-compliant in terms of XML, depended on imperfect presentation tools (e.g. tables for design), and was very kludgy in terms of showing XML, other technologies were seen as necessary. HTML, in its XHTML incarnation, is an excellent "query result" document. The division of presentation, code and data is now possible with the triad of CSS, JavaScript, and XHTML.

Your next article might be on how XQuery is sneaking up to allow for database access into XML documents.
Posted by citizencontact (46 comments )
Reply Link Flag
For performance, XML is a BAD choice for Google Maps
Here we go again. XML was probably not used here due to the extremely high performance necessary for Google Maps.

Knowing Google, they DO NOT use XML. They use shortened data, the shortest possible. Variable names are kept to a few characters at most. Anywhere they can eliminate a space or a carriage return, they do.
It's probably some sort of comma delimited string anyway.

XML is so unnecessary verbose and wordy there is no need for such overhead.

Again, typical I.T. so-called architects, authors and so on get it WRONG again.
Posted by (8 comments )
Link Flag
Actually the story is more about the success of XML
The success of JavaScript and CSS stylesheets has a lot to do with its ability to process XML and XHTML. As long as HTML was non-compliant in terms of XML, depended on imperfect presentation tools (e.g. tables for design), and was very kludgy in terms of showing XML, other technologies were seen as necessary. HTML, in its XHTML incarnation, is an excellent "query result" document. The division of presentation, code and data is now possible with the triad of CSS, JavaScript, and XHTML.

Your next article might be on how XQuery is sneaking up to allow for database access into XML documents.
Posted by citizencontact (46 comments )
Reply Link Flag
For performance, XML is a BAD choice for Google Maps
Here we go again. XML was probably not used here due to the extremely high performance necessary for Google Maps.

Knowing Google, they DO NOT use XML. They use shortened data, the shortest possible. Variable names are kept to a few characters at most. Anywhere they can eliminate a space or a carriage return, they do.
It's probably some sort of comma delimited string anyway.

XML is so unnecessary verbose and wordy there is no need for such overhead.

Again, typical I.T. so-called architects, authors and so on get it WRONG again.
Posted by (8 comments )
Link Flag
Explain the error....
The article suggests that the Google map site only uses older common technologies such as javascript and DHTML. It even alludes to the fact that they avoided Microsoft technology.

Maybe somebody can explain why, when I visit the site with IE and leave ActiveX disabled, I receive this error:

"ActiveX is not enabled in your browser. If your browser is Internet Explorer, you must have ActiveX enabled to use Google Maps."

It would seem that Google Maps uses DHTML, javascript, and ActiveX... no?
Posted by David Arbogast (1709 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Found It
XML DOM.
I guess the map site does use XML all the way to the client, and then parses it on the client machine. So, I'm guessing you get a different version of the site depending on which browser you use...??
Posted by David Arbogast (1709 comments )
Link Flag
Active-X and Google Maps???
I'm not sure about how Google Maps work with IE for Windows users, but it sure does work as expected for Mac and Linux (with Safari, Firefox and Opera), which lack Active-X. So I'm assuming either that Google provides different functionality for different browsers, or maybe not??
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Link Flag
Explain the error....
The article suggests that the Google map site only uses older common technologies such as javascript and DHTML. It even alludes to the fact that they avoided Microsoft technology.

Maybe somebody can explain why, when I visit the site with IE and leave ActiveX disabled, I receive this error:

"ActiveX is not enabled in your browser. If your browser is Internet Explorer, you must have ActiveX enabled to use Google Maps."

It would seem that Google Maps uses DHTML, javascript, and ActiveX... no?
Posted by David Arbogast (1709 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Found It
XML DOM.
I guess the map site does use XML all the way to the client, and then parses it on the client machine. So, I'm guessing you get a different version of the site depending on which browser you use...??
Posted by David Arbogast (1709 comments )
Link Flag
Active-X and Google Maps???
I'm not sure about how Google Maps work with IE for Windows users, but it sure does work as expected for Mac and Linux (with Safari, Firefox and Opera), which lack Active-X. So I'm assuming either that Google provides different functionality for different browsers, or maybe not??
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Link Flag
Keeping the World Wide Web 'open' is most important
Keeping Microsoft from locking the web into a proprietary mess (XAML/Avalon, etc...) is what is most important because it ensures that the web will remain open and free with maximized inoperability and compatibility amongst the wide range of computer platforms out there. I sure hope that Google wins the hearts and minds of those who prefer that the web should be accessible to all who surf the net.
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Reply Link Flag
We have to deal with what's here and now
Web standards have largely created the opportunity to build these so-called AJAX applications. What is not obvious to a lot of people is that until recently web developers have had to factor in Netscape 4 users because there were still a significant percent of them out there.

These days we predomninantly have IE and mozilla-based browsers with a smattering of Safari and Opera. While the latter two are a still a little problematic, the first two cover about 98% of the user base. Between them have a sufficient set of common functionality that they can be considered 'standard', so long as you keep to that common subset.

If Microsoft want to run off and create a better way of building these applications, then they need to consider that developers won't touch it unless they're dealing with a captive audience. As long as you have proprietry extensions, there will be a percentage of the user base that won't have the technology. Besides, how long is it going to take to see these browsers proliferate.

While it is true that build AJAX applications is slow and hard to get right, that can be alleviated over time by developing libraries of standard functions. There is a real growth industry here. For the present, this is what's going to deliver the richer user interactivity with the browser.
Posted by TerryField (2 comments )
Link Flag
Keeping the World Wide Web 'open' is most important
Keeping Microsoft from locking the web into a proprietary mess (XAML/Avalon, etc...) is what is most important because it ensures that the web will remain open and free with maximized inoperability and compatibility amongst the wide range of computer platforms out there. I sure hope that Google wins the hearts and minds of those who prefer that the web should be accessible to all who surf the net.
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Reply Link Flag
We have to deal with what's here and now
Web standards have largely created the opportunity to build these so-called AJAX applications. What is not obvious to a lot of people is that until recently web developers have had to factor in Netscape 4 users because there were still a significant percent of them out there.

These days we predomninantly have IE and mozilla-based browsers with a smattering of Safari and Opera. While the latter two are a still a little problematic, the first two cover about 98% of the user base. Between them have a sufficient set of common functionality that they can be considered 'standard', so long as you keep to that common subset.

If Microsoft want to run off and create a better way of building these applications, then they need to consider that developers won't touch it unless they're dealing with a captive audience. As long as you have proprietry extensions, there will be a percentage of the user base that won't have the technology. Besides, how long is it going to take to see these browsers proliferate.

While it is true that build AJAX applications is slow and hard to get right, that can be alleviated over time by developing libraries of standard functions. There is a real growth industry here. For the present, this is what's going to deliver the richer user interactivity with the browser.
Posted by TerryField (2 comments )
Link Flag
Accuracy Matters
While it is interesting that they use Javascript and XML, these are not noticeable to customers. It is the quality of the information. The neat graphics only go so far. If a query to a map returns a location that is a half-mile from the actual location, then it won't take long to figure that out. The real task confronting the dataMegaMarts is improving accuracy.

For that reason, the dataMegaMarts cannot rely on spidering the web itself. They have to purchase data from companies that make it their business to ensure the data is high quality and vetted. What is emerging is a feedback loop where some companies (such as Answer.com or GuruNet) can provide services to the dataMegaMarts and buy services as well. This is an interesting ecotone in the evolution of the system because the rate of exchange is high and the potential to evolve quickly is there.
Posted by (101 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Accuracy Matters
While it is interesting that they use Javascript and XML, these are not noticeable to customers. It is the quality of the information. The neat graphics only go so far. If a query to a map returns a location that is a half-mile from the actual location, then it won't take long to figure that out. The real task confronting the dataMegaMarts is improving accuracy.

For that reason, the dataMegaMarts cannot rely on spidering the web itself. They have to purchase data from companies that make it their business to ensure the data is high quality and vetted. What is emerging is a feedback loop where some companies (such as Answer.com or GuruNet) can provide services to the dataMegaMarts and buy services as well. This is an interesting ecotone in the evolution of the system because the rate of exchange is high and the potential to evolve quickly is there.
Posted by (101 comments )
Reply Link Flag
XAML/Avalon isn't about web apps
While I found this article interesting - saying that a rise in the use of DHTM is a threat to XAML is inaccurate.

XAML is a Windows application UI markup language - not a web application markup language. It is used to create interfaces for native windows applications. It is hoped to facilitate thin client/smart client development - but could work for any type of Windows GUI application.

Occasionally. MS shows XAML UIs running in IE, but that is not its main purpose.

Another "Ooo - MS is in trouble now" article - too bad the point is deluted by this slant.
Posted by dinkhome (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
point well taken
Yes, Avalon and XAML are designed to create Windows applications that are tightly integrated with the Web. But the point about competition stands. If a Microsoft competitor can create powerful, fast and scalable Web applications that run on any browser on any networked computer with a standards-compliant computer, how does that affect a consumer's decision to shell out for a Windows upgrade when Longhorn finally ships? The viability of the JavaScript approach poses the same kind of Web vs. Windows threat that inspired Microsoft to take on Netscape ten years ago. I'll reserve judgment on how serious that threat is in this instance, but I would hazard a guess that the Outlook team is looking long and hard at Gmail. The Hotmail team certainly had to.
Posted by (23 comments )
Link Flag
XAML and XUL will have a future in web development
Of course we all know that the XAML/Avalon combo will set a basis for future UI development for Windows applications, be we all also know the potential of anything XML has on the future of the web. XML's first success was databases (if I'm correct) and now it's defining the way we describe documents, spreadsheets and etc... and with web developers playing around with XUL (Mozilla's own UI specification via XML) shows the grand possibilities and its forward thinking approach to web-based applications. Microsoft's own XAML will also play a role in this arena if Windows-centric web developers make it happen. The only scary thing is if the web is infiltrated with XAML (a closed and proprietary standard that works only on Windows at this time) over XUL (an open standard that works pretty much everywhere Mozilla does), this will put a damper on the web and its greatest asset; openness.

examples of XUL and future web-based applications...

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.faser.net/mab/remote.cfm" target="_newWindow">http://www.faser.net/mab/remote.cfm</a>
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Link Flag
XAML/Avalon isn't about web apps
While I found this article interesting - saying that a rise in the use of DHTM is a threat to XAML is inaccurate.

XAML is a Windows application UI markup language - not a web application markup language. It is used to create interfaces for native windows applications. It is hoped to facilitate thin client/smart client development - but could work for any type of Windows GUI application.

Occasionally. MS shows XAML UIs running in IE, but that is not its main purpose.

Another "Ooo - MS is in trouble now" article - too bad the point is deluted by this slant.
Posted by dinkhome (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
point well taken
Yes, Avalon and XAML are designed to create Windows applications that are tightly integrated with the Web. But the point about competition stands. If a Microsoft competitor can create powerful, fast and scalable Web applications that run on any browser on any networked computer with a standards-compliant computer, how does that affect a consumer's decision to shell out for a Windows upgrade when Longhorn finally ships? The viability of the JavaScript approach poses the same kind of Web vs. Windows threat that inspired Microsoft to take on Netscape ten years ago. I'll reserve judgment on how serious that threat is in this instance, but I would hazard a guess that the Outlook team is looking long and hard at Gmail. The Hotmail team certainly had to.
Posted by (23 comments )
Link Flag
XAML and XUL will have a future in web development
Of course we all know that the XAML/Avalon combo will set a basis for future UI development for Windows applications, be we all also know the potential of anything XML has on the future of the web. XML's first success was databases (if I'm correct) and now it's defining the way we describe documents, spreadsheets and etc... and with web developers playing around with XUL (Mozilla's own UI specification via XML) shows the grand possibilities and its forward thinking approach to web-based applications. Microsoft's own XAML will also play a role in this arena if Windows-centric web developers make it happen. The only scary thing is if the web is infiltrated with XAML (a closed and proprietary standard that works only on Windows at this time) over XUL (an open standard that works pretty much everywhere Mozilla does), this will put a damper on the web and its greatest asset; openness.

examples of XUL and future web-based applications...

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.faser.net/mab/remote.cfm" target="_newWindow">http://www.faser.net/mab/remote.cfm</a>
Posted by JuggerNaut (860 comments )
Link Flag
Hurray for Google for using standard web technologies
Hurray for Google! While I acknowledge that proprietary technologies such as Flash have a place on the web, they are not standard technologies and they ultimately tie the web to specific corporate interests. Imagine a future where Flash is used for everything online - do we want Macromedia to have that control? (The same applies to Microsoft).

The fact is, the simplest solution is usually the best one. I see a lot of web sites that use Flash to do things that could be easily done using JavaScript/DHTML -- and with much smaller file sizes.

I'm glad to see a company like Google leveraging DHTML and JavaScript for their applications. These technologies aren't the solution for all interactivity, but they are available for all developers and they are free.

Other than the impact of Flash, the reason that DHTML/CSS were never exploited to their full potential in the 1990s was because of a lack of standards support in web browsers (e.g., very poor support in Netscape 4). This made it very difficult to create DHTML applications that worked properly cross-browser and cross-platform.

If browser companies had invested their time and effort in standardizing DTHML/CSS and fully exploiting these technologies, maybe we'd be further ahead. Instead, companies like Microsoft continually abandon older web technologies before they are perfected and introduce new ones (just like their operating systems).
Posted by bahead (27 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Hurray for Google for using standard web technologies
Hurray for Google! While I acknowledge that proprietary technologies such as Flash have a place on the web, they are not standard technologies and they ultimately tie the web to specific corporate interests. Imagine a future where Flash is used for everything online - do we want Macromedia to have that control? (The same applies to Microsoft).

The fact is, the simplest solution is usually the best one. I see a lot of web sites that use Flash to do things that could be easily done using JavaScript/DHTML -- and with much smaller file sizes.

I'm glad to see a company like Google leveraging DHTML and JavaScript for their applications. These technologies aren't the solution for all interactivity, but they are available for all developers and they are free.

Other than the impact of Flash, the reason that DHTML/CSS were never exploited to their full potential in the 1990s was because of a lack of standards support in web browsers (e.g., very poor support in Netscape 4). This made it very difficult to create DHTML applications that worked properly cross-browser and cross-platform.

If browser companies had invested their time and effort in standardizing DTHML/CSS and fully exploiting these technologies, maybe we'd be further ahead. Instead, companies like Microsoft continually abandon older web technologies before they are perfected and introduce new ones (just like their operating systems).
Posted by bahead (27 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Ahhh! This is what I've been saying!
I've been writing web apps like this for 3 years now! Why is that when Google does it, it's something special!
I mean congratulations on discovering the wheel here!
I was totally here first www.jonandnic.com/jonathan/jsobjects
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Um, you were not "totally first here"
If you've been doing this for 3 years then you were not "totally first here." Stuff like this has been possible since at least 1998, and even Dreamweaver has provided features for this going back to its first release.
Posted by (127 comments )
Link Flag
Ahhh! This is what I've been saying!
I've been writing web apps like this for 3 years now! Why is that when Google does it, it's something special!
I mean congratulations on discovering the wheel here!
I was totally here first www.jonandnic.com/jonathan/jsobjects
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Um, you were not "totally first here"
If you've been doing this for 3 years then you were not "totally first here." Stuff like this has been possible since at least 1998, and even Dreamweaver has provided features for this going back to its first release.
Posted by (127 comments )
Link Flag
Another retarded article
The newsworthiness of this article is zero. What's so special about s web site using a matured technology like DHTML? Google uses a GIF for their logo. Is that a "blast from the past" too?
Posted by Chung Leong (111 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Another retarded article
The newsworthiness of this article is zero. What's so special about s web site using a matured technology like DHTML? Google uses a GIF for their logo. Is that a "blast from the past" too?
Posted by Chung Leong (111 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Looking forward to SDKs and more...
I was building something using a similar approach
along these lines from late 1999-thru-early-2003,
and stopped because I thought I was going down the wrong path... And was in the process of ramping
this work back up and going with a more
traditional approach, i.e Java Server Pages, or
PHP with a fairly static user view...

see: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg" target="_newWindow">http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg</a>

I may ramp the old stuff back up again...
Posted by (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Looking forward to SDKs and more...
I was building something using a similar approach
along these lines from late 1999-thru-early-2003,
and stopped because I thought I was going down the wrong path... And was in the process of ramping
this work back up and going with a more
traditional approach, i.e Java Server Pages, or
PHP with a fairly static user view...

see: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg" target="_newWindow">http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg</a>

I may ramp the old stuff back up again...
Posted by (5 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Missing Link
The main reason that everyone is getting so excited about
"AJAX" and Javascript in general centers around a object that was
added in the past year or so.

The XMLHttpRequest object allows Javascript to send a query to
a server and receive a response. This is the key that is opening
up all kinds of new doors. Before, Javascript was pretty much
limited to using data that was loaded in the initial page load. If
you wanted new data you reloaded the page. Javascript has
always had to ability to update sections of a web page using it's
DOM and XML abilities.

Funny thing is that it was Microsoft that first added this to their
version of Javascript in IE5. Other browsers followed suit shortly
after.

Apple has a very good article on using this functionality on their
developer website:

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://developer.apple.com/internet/webcontent/" target="_newWindow">http://developer.apple.com/internet/webcontent/</a>
xmlhttpreq.html
Posted by tfardella (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
hidden frame works too
In the past I simply used a hidden frame to pass data between the browser and the server, and with mozilla used the sidebar for persistence

see: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg" target="_newWindow">http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg</a>
Posted by (5 comments )
Link Flag
Missing Link
The main reason that everyone is getting so excited about
"AJAX" and Javascript in general centers around a object that was
added in the past year or so.

The XMLHttpRequest object allows Javascript to send a query to
a server and receive a response. This is the key that is opening
up all kinds of new doors. Before, Javascript was pretty much
limited to using data that was loaded in the initial page load. If
you wanted new data you reloaded the page. Javascript has
always had to ability to update sections of a web page using it's
DOM and XML abilities.

Funny thing is that it was Microsoft that first added this to their
version of Javascript in IE5. Other browsers followed suit shortly
after.

Apple has a very good article on using this functionality on their
developer website:

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://developer.apple.com/internet/webcontent/" target="_newWindow">http://developer.apple.com/internet/webcontent/</a>
xmlhttpreq.html
Posted by tfardella (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
hidden frame works too
In the past I simply used a hidden frame to pass data between the browser and the server, and with mozilla used the sidebar for persistence

see: <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg" target="_newWindow">http://qbal.mozdev.org/oldQbal.jpeg</a>
Posted by (5 comments )
Link Flag
Well, let's see...
&gt;If a Microsoft competitor can create powerful, fast
&gt;and scalable Web applications that run on any
&gt;browser on any networked computer with a
&gt;standards-compliant computer, how does that affect
&gt;a consumer's decision to shell out for a Windows
&gt;upgrade when Longhorn finally ships?

Well, gosh, let's see. How useful is a DHTML web app when you don't have a live internet connection? Oh, that's right - you can't use it when you're offline.

How useful is a DHTML web app when you want to integrate the content into another application? Oh, that's right - it's a self-contained web page running in a browser.

How useful is a DHTML web app when it needs to work directly with the client system, for doing things like working with local files? Oh, that's right, web apps can't do that.

There's a time and a place for web apps, and a time and a place for local client apps. PhotoShop and Dreamweaver will NEVER be implemented as web apps. they just don't fit the model. There's plenty of other examples of this.
Posted by (127 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Well, let's see...
&gt;If a Microsoft competitor can create powerful, fast
&gt;and scalable Web applications that run on any
&gt;browser on any networked computer with a
&gt;standards-compliant computer, how does that affect
&gt;a consumer's decision to shell out for a Windows
&gt;upgrade when Longhorn finally ships?

Well, gosh, let's see. How useful is a DHTML web app when you don't have a live internet connection? Oh, that's right - you can't use it when you're offline.

How useful is a DHTML web app when you want to integrate the content into another application? Oh, that's right - it's a self-contained web page running in a browser.

How useful is a DHTML web app when it needs to work directly with the client system, for doing things like working with local files? Oh, that's right, web apps can't do that.

There's a time and a place for web apps, and a time and a place for local client apps. PhotoShop and Dreamweaver will NEVER be implemented as web apps. they just don't fit the model. There's plenty of other examples of this.
Posted by (127 comments )
Reply Link Flag
With all due respect to David Mendels
Google didn't succeed at this because they hired "Rocket Scientists". Information about how to develop applications using this method have been available for years, and it's just a question of developers learning to use the tools out there to get the job done.

Of course, if you're just a script kiddie, then something like this is probably out of reach. But does David really think that developing these kinds of apps with Flash is easier? ***?
Posted by (127 comments )
Reply Link Flag
With all due respect to David Mendels
Google didn't succeed at this because they hired "Rocket Scientists". Information about how to develop applications using this method have been available for years, and it's just a question of developers learning to use the tools out there to get the job done.

Of course, if you're just a script kiddie, then something like this is probably out of reach. But does David really think that developing these kinds of apps with Flash is easier? ***?
Posted by (127 comments )
Reply Link Flag
really, really, really hard
&gt;"It is really, really, really hard to build
&gt;something like Gmail and Google Maps," said David
&gt;Mendels, general manager of platform products for
&gt;Macromedia

No it's not. In fact now that I've gotten the hang of it, I'd almost say its easier to make a web app this way. The biggest thing google did was publicize that this sort of functionality was available. I never heard of it until I noticed gmail was doing something unusual to retrieve data. But to my suprise IE, firefox, &#38; mozilla have supported it flawlessly for years.

If this 'hurts' anyone it's going to dent Flash. I just built a web app using the XML/DHTML technique in place of the originally planned Flash interface.

David, baby, give me a jingle. I'll get you guys up to speed in no time. Low six figures.
Posted by (402 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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