In my enthusiasm for the advantages of browser-based application development in my post about Google and Microsoft yesterday, I neglected to include the necessary counter-truth known to all web developers (one I have some experience with from my work at Salon): that when you develop for the browser, you’re actually developing for a whole mess of different browsers, each of which behaves just differently enough to make your life miserable. This seems especially true with the new wave of Ajax-based apps, that rest on a variety of technologies implemented differently by each browser producer (and each generation of product). Thanks to David Czarnecki for supplying my forgotten caveat.
And over on her blog apophenia (look it up! add it to your vocabulary! I just did), danah boyd offers a parallel argument about Windows-only development, suggesting that “you don’t have the right to espouse open standards if you continue to only build on top of only one closed one… Openness isn’t simply about open protocols concerning one application, but about open choice to mix and match layers through and through.”
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