The Disappearing Desktop - It's Real This Time
soapdog at mac.com
Thu Nov 10 10:47:49 CST 2005
one thing we're ignoring on this thread but that is a very important
issue. The cost for the developer to deliver desktop apps versus the
cost to deliver web apps. This is a major issue for small developers
such as me. For example imagine my old blog client called BlogWorkz.
It's a desktop app that allows you to post to Blogger API 1.0 enabled
blogs, the main selling point of this tool was: "It frees you from
tedious logins and cabalistic HTML Interfaces." and that was the main
reason people bought the shareware. It's a simple app and probably
could be cloned to AJAX in some days without loosing any huge
Interface experience. BlogWorkz and it's former cousin iBlog have,
counting only versiontracker, near 15 thousand downloads. If I was to
run an iBlog/BlogWorkz AJAX app that could support thousands of
customers I would need: a big server, a huge pipe to the internet,
probably would use some RDBMS to store user settings and data (I
don't have such experience on serving thousands custormers). My
server would need periodical backups and some backup server case the
main one falls or I'll face user riots. This just to serve thousands,
which is not a very high number for me to profit on advertisements.
BlogWorkz sells for cheap $10, this price is not enough to cover my
cost developing it and pay for all the structure needed to serve it
as AJAX app. No way I could use AJAX advertising paradigm on the
softwares I am building, I am too small for that.
That's one reason why I think the BIG ones will do some AJAX as
flavour of the month (or year) and the small developers will keep to
the desktop, desktop is cheaper and easier to deliver. For the big
ones is also a question of pride and image, like "Hey Microsoft,
Google is winning over you, saw their online apps? You can't do that,
you're lame!!!". The Big players are not only in it for the money,
but they must also, avoid loosing face. I just want to deliver nice
software, it's not a matter of pride.
The plot tickens.
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