Revolution and the Web, feedback wanted, Part 1 of 3

Richard Gaskin ambassador at
Tue Nov 28 00:38:23 EST 2006

Andre wrote:
> I wrote a really big piece today. I sent to the list but the list  
> rejected saying it is to big (16k, awaiting moderator approaval).

That's a silly arbitrary limit.  But the post is valuable and there are 
so many more people here than there that rather than inconvenience the 
lot of them I've taken the liberty of re-posting your message here as 
you originally intended, broken into three parts to work within the 
silly limit here....

  Richard Gaskin
  Managing Editor, revJournal
  Rev tips, tutorials and more:


 From Andre:

Boa noite, Friends,

I sent this first to the use-revolution list but I think it was reject 
for being a big email.

Again on this list we touch the topics of browser plugins, flash export 
and other possible web related features. People from the RunRev team 
came forward and asked us for feedback and requests and many answered to 
this call. This email will be my thoughts on the topic of web and rev, 
it will be a very long email and I'll touch many topics but in the end 
this will remain an opinion piece and others may have a different point 
of view. I hereby apologise for my lack of english grammar skills and my 
typos, even before they occur. English is my third language, portuguese 
is my first, cursing my second and english my third. I'll first talk 
about flash, web browser plugin, java bytecodes, I'll be against them 
all, then I'll talk about what I think is the future and that it can be 
done now if people help.

It's been mentioned before that Revolution should export it's stacks to 
flash, I don't think this is feasible not only by a technical standpoint 
but also for a theoretical point of view. Flash is a multimedia 
presentation authoring tool. Runtime Revolution is a turing complete 
application building language and IDE. Revolution has features such as 
database access, tcp and udp networking, native GUI support which don't 
map well to Flash. I am not even touching topics such as the unique 
nature of stacks, cards, objects, customprops and the message path. I 
don't think the feature set and the mind set behind those two apps map 
well to each other, so therefore, I recommend against such solutions but 
the SWF format is open and anyone is encouraged to try some experiments.

Other possible solution was the creation of a web browser plugin, this 
is certainly more attractive to me than flash and more feasible. The 
idea of a plugin although is very hard because not only RunRev team 
would have to support lots of platforms (at least linux, windows and mac 
os x) but also each browser for each platform (safari, mozilla, 
explorer, opera), the amount of resources to create such thing would be 
enormous. Also what is the real difference between downloading the 
Revolution Player and having a browser plugin? Both will be about the 
same size but the plugin will be confined to the browser canvas (okay, 
it might be able to spawn its own windows too) and the Revolution Player 
one will be running on the "real thing". As far as my experience goes 
with Revolution Player, if any user needs to use my software, he will 
gladly download the player, he acknowledges no difference between 
downloading a player and a plugin. The player is less work for RunRev as 
a windows player will work in every windows, a browser plugin will 
depend on the browser version. So I'd rather use the Revolution player 
than a plugin.

The idea of making the engine generate java bytecodes is very 
entertaining because this would enable us to use revolution to build 
servlets for our web server end, midlets for our cellphone or pda 
programming and applets for those that really want to be confined to a 
browser canvas. I don't know much about java bytecodes although I put a 
book specially about generating java bytecodes from languages that are 
not java in my Safari bookshelf. The idea is very nice except for the 
REWRITTEN, sorry for the all caps, but we needed emphasys. To create 
such bytecode thing, a new engine would need to be built, we would not 
be able to re-use none of the C/C++ code. A new engine from the scratch. 
We don't have the resources for that either, writting a new engine?! 
Just pick everything scott raney did, all the things runrev added during 
the last years, throw it all away and build it again just for using java 
bytecodes. I don't think we can do that now.

Okay, my rant is finished, let us talk about new things, about 
Revolution and the Web in the way I see it.

(continued in Part 2 of 3)

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