Monday, November 26, 2007

GUIs - Take Two

Today I came across a very interesting article posted by Joel Spolsky in his blog. Joel has one of my favorite blog sites on the Internet that deal with the business of software development (

In this latest article (maybe not... I see he's got a later one), he talks about how the next version of graphical user interfaces (GUIs) are going to come from the optimization/compilation of the Javascript language. Based on previous history, he makes a very good argument that the company that has the most developers will end up owning the user interface space. That's exactly what happened to Windows.

He eludes that Microsoft is working on a strategy that will bring it back into the center of the GUI universe through a combination of compiled JavaScript support at the browser and a sophisticated "Ajaxy library that includes all kinds of clever interop features". Could this be Microsoft's Silverlight? I thought that was supposed to be the Flash killer...

Joel runs a company that makes money selling AJAX-based development tools. On top of that, Joel is an ex-Microsoftie so he probably has some type of inside knowledge on this stuff (probably even well-placed sources). I think he may be hearing some grumblings.

What do you think?