Are Desktop Applications Dying?

ZDNet Blogger John Carrol posted a blog last week titled "Everybody hates browser applications" that has started a lively discussion. I feel that "everybody" certainly does not hate browser applications. In fact, I feel just the opposite. That is, despite the resistance, desktop applications are dying. Browser applications are ‘good enough’ compared to their desktop equivalents and are getting better all the time. And even then, it doesn't matter if everyone hates browser applications, they're going to be using browser applications anyway because they're easier for developers to write and distribute. Everyone's a critic, but it’s the developers who dictate which technology gets used to create apps. Example #1 how browser applications are ‘good enough’ compared to their desktop equivalents At the recent JSConf I attended, I saw a demo of the new iPad support in SproutCore (the JavaScript framework that Apple uses for its MobileMe online web applications.) The iPad team worked with the SproutCore team to provide native hardware acceleration to the JavaScript layer and made the web applications just as fast and native looking as their native siblings written in Objective-C. Example #2 how browser applications are ‘good enough’ compared to their desktop equivalents One of the more famous iPad apps is the NPR app, a native Objective-C iPad that launched at the same time as the iPad. At JSConf, a JavaScript-only SproutCore version of the NPR app was written in a few days, and actually was faster than the native equivalent. The JavaScript/web version was ‘better’ than the native version.” So consider this - as a web-developer looking to get into the mobile marketplace, wouldn't you rather leverage your existing skill set (HTML, CSS, and JavaScript) than learn a completely new technology set (Objective-C for iPad and iPhone)?

Written by

Jason Huggins

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App testingCross browser