Joel Spolsky has had more than a modicum of success reading the tea leaves of the software industry, so when he writes an incisive essay about the future of application development and platforms, it’s worth not only taking a look, but pursuing an understanding of some of the relevant issues and technologies.
I’ll provide some links here which will help the reader to understand how many of the points Joel makes in his essay are supported by existing technologies in various states of readiness. It’s a big pantry of ingredients that is waiting for the right chef to come along and combine them in a way that inspires the world to follow.
This list is far from exhaustive but I just want to give you some clues that are representative of each topic to help you get started. Please let me know if I’ve missed any important topics.
- Webkit – used by Apple’s Safari
- Mozilla Tamarin Project – virtual machine, JIT compilation
- Screaming Monkey – Tamarin plugin for IE
- Dojo Toolkit – one of the most mature and rich JS libraries and widget sets
- Yahoo User Interface Library – another very large and wide set of utilities and controls
- Protoscript – prototyped behaviours simplified
- Google Gears – offline storage
- Dojo Offline Toolkit – abstractions on top of Gears, e.g. sync framework
- Tibco General Interface – comprehensive framework and visual tools
- Qooxdoo – multipurpose framework
- Google Web Toolkit – write in Java, compile to rich app with client-side JS
- OpenLaszlo – framework or runtime platform or both?
Rich Web Application Runtimes: