Michal Migurski's notebook, listening post, and soapbox. Subscribe to this blog. Check out the rest of my site as well.

Jan 23, 2006 4:38pm

dion channels marc

Dion channeling Marc Andreessen:

But I assert that Ajax encourages, even enables, software creators down a path that is inherently disruptive to the greater software world. Here's why: 1) The End of Software Upgrades, Fixes, and Security Patches. 2) Software and Data Available Wherever You Go. 3) Isolated Software Can't Compete with Connected Software. 4) Deprecation of the Traditional Operating System. 5) Software That Is Invisible.

This is basically Andreessen's comment from 1995 that Netscape would "reduce Windows to a set of poorly debugged device drivers." This is clearly not a new argument, and Ajax isn't exactly the core of the change -- HTML was ten years ago, then Java, then Flash. I think it's significant that many of the same people making this claim (myself included) are also hardcore Mac fans, following Apple's developments on OS X closely. To me, this shows that a movement towards networked applications as Dion describes makes the local client software even more important, because it alone makes or breaks the networked software. For years, Microsoft exploited this by subtly breaking Explorer's capacity for internet applications, and is now finally getting their asses handed to them by the bastard child of Netscape that happens to offer a better user experience.

For me, Ajax is disruptive because it places non-monopoly browsers in a lead position, and returns Explorer to playing feature catch-up again.

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