API's that Suck

May 13, 2009

Open Standards is not a platform

Filed under: Uncategorized — Grauenwolf @ 7:19 pm

Today I wrote about the New York Times dropping WPF and Silverlight in favor of Adobe’s AIR. This was the first response:

Sigh. It’s not like AIR is a better idea… Open Standards, people.

That’s not even an option, let alone the right one. “Open Standards” isn’t the name of a platform. It has no runtime, no compiler, no libraries, no features, no anything. Open Standards is a concept, a description you apply to something.

What’s worse is that Silverlight is supposed to be an open standard. Much of its core has already been ratified by ECMA and Microsoft is very interested in helping third-parties like Novel build their own versions.

Adobe AIR, on the other hand, is completely proprietary. No one else makes AIR runtimes and Adobe intends to keep it that way. But that doesn’t matter to the New York Times. All they care about is which one actually works.

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