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by Franki

Google’s maps project is a pretty amazing demonstration of just want can be achieved with old school DHTML (Dynamic HTML).
With the big names in software trying to convince everyone of the need for languages like XAML (Extensible Application Markup Language), Google just worked with what they have available now, namely DHTML, and the result can be uniformly seen as a success. This brings up a new question, should we really be creating new frameworks for web enabled applications, or should we be fixing the tools we have now to be uniformly compatible and standards compliant? Internet Explorer 6 still doesn’t correctly support CSS standards that came out years ago, and apparently IE7 isn’t going to fix that. And these are the people trying to convince us all that their technology should be the one adopted to promote interoperability? They have not been able to be standards compliant on simple HTML, JavaScript and CSS, so I think we can safely judge at this point that they should definitely not lead the charge with XAML. IE7 most likely wouldn’t be coming now if not for Microsoft’s worry that Firefox will have eaten most of their market share before Longhorn arrives due to security concerns with IE. Microsoft is probably also worried that if they are not the monopoly online in the coming years, then they can’t make sure that the Windows Operating System is an integral part of it. If web applications (which many are proclaiming are the future) will run the same on Linux, Mac, Unix and Windows, why would anyone buy Windows anymore?
So there you have it folks, we could be having a much more interactive online experience right now if all the browsers equally supported the W3C standards, the fact that some don’t (I’m talking to you IE), is why developers have to spend so much time making sure their pages look OK in each browser. The result is that most developers go for the easy answer, sticking to those things they know work ok in all browsers (like nested table layouts) instead of using the far superior div/CSS route (for example). If you know anyone that works for Microsoft in IE development, slap them for me. Cnet has covered this in much more detail. My take on this, is that if any platform should be used to future interoperable web apps, it should be based on the Mozilla XUL framework which is owned by a not for profit group, rather then alternatives that are owned by huge multinational corporations who are after all answering more to their shareholders then to the public at large.








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