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Move Over AJAX, Make Room for ARAX 409

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the not-a-typo dept.
sasserstyl writes "eWeek reports that Microsoft's Silverlight platform will support Ruby client-side scripting, enabling ARAX — or Asynchronous Ruby and XML. Would be cool to have the option to script client-side in something other than Javascript. 'In essence, using ARAX, Ruby developers would not have to go through the machinations of using something like the RJS (Ruby JavaScript) utility, where they write Ruby code and RJS generates JavaScript code to run on the client, Lam said. "Sure, you could do it that way, but then at some point you might have to add some JavaScript code that adds some custom functionality on the client yourself," he said. "So there's always that sense of, 'Now I'm in another world. And wouldn't it be nice if I have this utility class I wrote in Ruby...' Today if I want to use it in the browser I have to port it to JavaScript. Now I can just run it in the browser."'"
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Move Over AJAX, Make Room for ARAX

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:49PM (#23684615)
    Does yours?
    • by Reverend528 (585549) * on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:51PM (#23684643) Homepage
      Last week they embraced ruby. Now they are extending it. I can't wait to see what they'll do next!
      • by bsDaemon (87307) on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:53PM (#23684677)
        If they extinguished it, who would notice? Seriously -- I'm not trying to troll. WTF is Ruby and what is so great about it? It just seems like Java for people who hate Java from what little research I've done on it, but it also seems to be very popular (of course, hating Java is popular, too).

        Can someone please tell me?
        • by hansamurai (907719) <hansamurai@gmail.com> on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:02PM (#23684809) Homepage Journal
          It's a scripting language that was under the radar until Ruby on Rails came around. Rails is a well done framework for Ruby that opened up the language to the masses.

          And because you brought up Java too, there's also JRuby, a Java implementation of Ruby.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by sm62704 (957197)
            Rails is a well done framework for Ruby that opened up the language to the masses.

            Am I the only one who sees something bad about that?

            Does a plumber do electrical work? No? Then why does anyone but a programmer do programming in a professional environment?

            It must be this nasty cold I've contracted, I can't seem to understand anything today.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Trails (629752)
              The masses = programmers building business software.

              The masses tend to use established languages with established frameworks, because their bosses say so.

              Their bosses say so because they(the bosses) don't want to pay for re-inventing and then maintain the proverbial wheel.

              Hence, no matter how hotshit/elegant/orgasm-inducing/LISP-ish/un-PERL-ish/whatever a language is, if doesn't have a viable persistence model and/or mvc, etc... corporate folk won't use it.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by profplump (309017)
              Actually a lot of plumbers do electrical work. And HVAC work. Haven't you ever seen a van for "AAA Heating, Plumbing and Electrical"?
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by SatanicPuppy (611928) *
          It's like java, but not as fast, secure, or scalable.

          It's syntax is "intuitive" which would mean good things if you were someone off the street, but for the rest of us who've spent decades working with languages that are basically C syntax, it's a p.i.t.a, and the syntax doesn't really add anything.

          Rails is a cool new idea, but the implementation is horrorshow; Django got a later start and is already ahead in performance.
          • by nuttycom (1016165) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:20PM (#23685051)
            Its syntax isn't like C? Cry me a river. Sure, the syntax could have been made more c-like (braces instead of do/end - and you can use braces if you like anyway) but the syntax isn't where you get the benefit of ruby.

            The most important thing that Ruby has done, in my mind, is to make blocks, closures, and runtime metaprogramming mainstream. So while the syntax may not add much, the language features add a hell of a lot. After writing code in C and Java for a number of years, switching over to Ruby took me all of a week.

            That being said, the supposed productivity gains are mostly hype, because you end up spending the time you gained in writing the code to begin with having to write a lot more integration tests to ensure correctness for things that the compiler deals with in a typesafe language.

            Rails has been pretty important insofar as it's given a kick in the ass to a bunch of other languages. I agree though that the implementation is a bit of a nightmare, and the lack of built-in dependency injection is a hassle.
            • So far everything I've seen that was at all "special" about Ruby is available in just about every other language via helper classes (like Integer for ints in Java) and perhaps slightly less graceful structures like callbacks (just look at jQuery, for example.)

              Usually the reason I've picked a language to do a job has had nothing to do about syntax. The three biggest factors have always been: what do I already know, what has the best performance, and what can be developed quickest? It's always a balance of
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by jhoger (519683)
              Somehow I recall closures, blocks, metaprogramming commonly used and usable in Perl before I ever heard of Ruby.

              I'm sticking with Perl and CPAN, thanks.
          • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

            by ShieldW0lf (601553)
            Rails isn't cool. It's a poor concept from the word go. They make the thing so damned weighty in their blind adherence to the flawed premise that just because MVC is a good model for desktop applications, it's a good model for everything, and that single premise is an insurmountable barrier to good performance.

            Fact of the matter is, MVC is a piss poor model for stateless client-server applications, but it's not till you've wasted your time building a solution in this fashion and watching it fail to scale
            • by encoderer (1060616) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:49PM (#23685505)
              Ok, I'll bite. What makes MVC a "piss poor model" for web applications?

              The only thing you mentioned was scalability.

              Personally, I find the MVC pattern applies to web apps wonderfully. Being able to "plug and play" views is far more helpful in the web universe than it is in rich client programming.

              I can create a default view, lately that's been a standard XHTML interface with Ajax, usually leveraging the ext.js library.

              And I also create a simplified HTML-only view for graceful degredation on clients that are not using JavaScript.

              And a view for mobile interfaces.

              On "data grid pages" I can plug-in a view that outputs the data in XML or Excel format.

              For reporting I can create a view for an on-screen HTML based report, or I can plug in a view that displays it as a PDF or, again, XML or Excel.

              Meanwhile, I only create the data models and controllers once.

              This is FAR easier and faster to create and maintain.

              And in todays world, unless you're a top-1% web destination it's a FAR wiser move to optimize for development time and cost than it is to optimize for the machine.

              Adding a server is much cheaper than adding a developer.

              Believe it or not, I'm not a fan of Rails. I'm especially not a fan of ActiveRecord. In ruby, DataMapper is a much better Db layer than is ActiveRecord.

              But to denounce Rails because it's MVC? I'd love to hear why you feel that way.
              • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                by gbjbaanb (229885)
                I thought the web was a MVC model. The browser is your View and the server side is your controller (and you have model data from somewhere, DB or static files or whatever).

                I think he's referring to interactivity, ie in a thick client MVC system, you can interact with the GUI and changes are seen immediately, but the problem here isn't one of MVC being poor, its the relatively slow network that's the problem.

                I suppose you could download a lot of data to the view and only show part of it as the user selects t
              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by PietjeJantje (917584)

                Ok, I'll bite. What makes MVC a "piss poor model" for web applications?

                Because the web, like he said, is stateless. A request comes in, the server compiles and constructs this whole MVC structure from the scripting language, with 1 page object, 1 database object, etc. etc., generates 1 page, and then.. well then it throws everything away. Well, joy. Compare this to desktop apps where stuff is in memory and real processes take place between objects. So for the web, it degenerates both object oriented programming and MVC into mere ways to organize your code, more likely than no

                • by encoderer (1060616) on Friday June 06, 2008 @04:06PM (#23686631)
                  "So for the web, it degenerates both object oriented programming and MVC into mere ways to organize your code"

                  That's nonsense.

                  If for no other reason than the fact that displaying a page often involves some real work. Some real heavy-lifting. Often far more than just a couple database queries being fed into a grid or report.

                  OOP brings order, structure, reuse and quality control to large, complex systems (and website/webapps can certainly be very large and very complex) That's true no matter what context it's being used in, web, rich client, whatever.

                  Yes, there is overhead involved in creating objects. But even in your worst-case scenario where there is no shared state, the overhead is hardly a deal breaker: It's far better to optimize for the developer than it is to optimize for the machine. Unless you're working on a website in the 99th percentile of traffic, you probably don't have a lot to worry about.

                  Further, your scenario IS worst-case.

                  For example, we have an in-house framework. It's not all that different than the ones you've seen. Take, for example, a simple web form:

                  You instantiate the data model (need to pre-populate the form), you instantiate a webform object, which is view-tier and is just a widget that binds to a data model and presents an HTML form.

                  When that form is rendered in HTML, the webform object and the data model it binds to are serialized and stored in the session.

                  When the user submits the form the front-controller will look at the formkey submitted with the form and unserialize the form and model objects. It pulls the values from the HTTP Post into the data model and they're validated and saved.

                  This is nothing revolutionary. It's not even complicated. And it's just one of a dozen ways to overcome the no-shared-state problem.

                  The idea that OOD is "degenerated" in a web environment is ludicrous. Procedural development is a thing of the past. The idea of 1 page : 1 script that runs from line 1 to line n is just not adequate for MOST modern web apps.

                  Todays systems are not your mothers web applications. We're doing far too much on the web. Applications the size of the web applications that are written today would collapse under their own weight if done procedurally.
                • by nuzak (959558) on Friday June 06, 2008 @04:13PM (#23686733) Journal
                  MVC in web apps has about as much to do with Smalltalk's old MVC as unix signals have to do with the physical control lines they used to correspond to (gimme a break I couldn't find a car analogy). MVC is nothing more than three-tier, with the middle tier itself adding some extra separation between processing requests (controller) and generating output (view).

                  HTTP is stateless. So is UDP. Does that make every online game that uses it stateless? The web is not a protocol.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by srussell (39342)

            It's like java, but not as fast, secure, or scalable.

            It's like Java, only without hacks like "primitives". Unlike Java, it is a pure OO language, where everything is an object, and it provides a few significant OO features that are missing from Java, such as mix-ins and closures.

            --- SER

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            It's like java, but not as fast, secure, or scalable.
            No. Ruby is what would happen if you put Java, Python, Perl and Common Lisp in a blender.

        • by catmistake (814204) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:10PM (#23684903) Journal
          Agreed.
          Ajax (Asynchronous Javascript and XMLhttpRequest) was given a name because it was a growing trend; many decided to use it independently, and naming it something made sense. ARAX, or whatever, is just an idea a few people have. I see no trend.
        • by happyemoticon (543015) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:12PM (#23684955) Homepage

          It's more similar to Python in my mind. It's a post-Perl interpreted language that attempts to have better object-orientation while not being overly restrictive. It inherits a lot more from Perl than Python does, so you can accomplish most tasks in a variety of ways. Neither is anywhere near as rigid as Java - you don't have to catch or throw every exception, you don't have to make ten subclasses and an interface to write Hello World, etc.

          I get into these kinds of discussions with my boss all the time. He looks at Java as the ultimate golden hammer, and I tend to use a variety of languages. There are a bunch of little syntactic things I love about Ruby, but in the end it's mostly a question of style, politics and library support.

          • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

            but in the end it's mostly a question of style, politics and library support.

            Yeah, I see Obama as a Ruby man myself, whereas McCain is a C or C++ man. Ruby's cool, trendy, and somewhat revolutionary, but it's unproven and may have problems scaling beyond small to medium sized bases. The ideas all seem to be right, but nobody knows if they'll work in the real world.

            C and C++, on the other hand, have been around forever, they're old and stodgy, yet you know where they stand and how things are going to work out. You're not going to get anything revolutionary out of them, and you're

          • by sm62704 (957197) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:51PM (#23685537) Journal
            Ruby [si.edu]
            rails [railway-technology.com]
            Ruby on rails [wordpress.com]
            Soap [alleco.com.au]
            Ajax [mediacrumb.com]
            Ajax soap [orgill.com]
            Python [animal-world.com]
            Perl [unc.edu]
            Java [blogs.com]

            Is it any wonder normal people think we're strange? (Ignore the rest of this comment, as it presently has too few characters per line (currently 8.5) but thankfully I can paste slashdot's retarded "error" message in the comment to correct this travesty)
        • It just seems like Java for people who hate Java from what little research I've done on it, but it also seems to be very popular (of course, hating Java is popular, too).
          More like Perl for people who hate Perl. It has most of the same strengths, but isn't remotely so hideous.
        • by an.echte.trilingue (1063180) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:26PM (#23685147) Homepage
          Microsoft knows that web applications will soon threaten their client-side sales model. They also know that places like Google have enough of a head start in the AJAX world that they will never catch up (tried google apps lately? It is really getting there, especially if you do a lot of collaborative work). This is why IE's javascript standards compliancy still sucks balls even though its CSS support isn't bad: they want to make life hard for people trying to develop in AJAX.

          Now they are trying to develop proprietary technologies to compete: Silverlight and this new ARAX bull will replace Flash and AJAX. They will release some shit-hot developer tools that make it really easy to build shiny websites on the Silverlight/ARAX stack so that before long half the web is written in it. Then, ARAX and Silverlight will get proprietary extensions (new functionality! woot!) and break on non-IE browsers (got to assure that OS monopoly). They will also add some undocumented APIs so that the (subscription-based) Microsoft Apps runs faster than anything anybody else comes ups with, and boom!

          Profit.
        • by Jesus_666 (702802)

          If they extinguished it, who would notice?
          Japan.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by DragonWriter (970822)

          It just seems like Java for people who hate Java from what little research I've done on it

          Its nothing like Java.

          Now, if you said it sounds like "Python for people who hate Python", that would be more reasonable. Or, say, "Perl for people who can't read Perl". But those, though better than "Java for people who hate Java", still miss the point.

          Its a dynamic scripting language whose strongest initial influences were, IIRC, Smalltalk and Perl; it was more OO from the start than Python, though I think that's le

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Kingrames (858416)
        President Bush has already announced plans to liberate it.
    • by stoolpigeon (454276) * <bittercode@gmail> on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:51PM (#23684645) Homepage Journal
      Not only that - my platform doesn't support silverlight.
    • There are at least two Ruby-on-JavaScript (HotRuby, IronMonkey) projects I know of, the former of which has a working, limited Ruby 1.9 bytecode interpreter running on JS.

      So, if your browser supports JavaScript...
    • by WED Fan (911325)
      Did you try to read even the summary? Don't worry about RTFA, try reading the summary before trying to get that first post.
    • by Jugalator (259273) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:39PM (#23685341) Journal

      Does yours?
      Who cares about that. It runs in Silverlight. It's whether your browser supports the Silverlight plugin that matters. IE does, Firefox on Windows (2, not yet 3) does, Opera does inofficially (to be official in the future), Safari on OS X does. Firefox on Linux is WIP and a Mono project.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by mythras (997054)
      Does this mean my new ARAX sites will be as reliable as Twitter? If so, I'm gonna need to extend the minutes on my on-call cellphone plan.
  • Look at ol' MS (Score:4, Interesting)

    by flanksteak (69032) * on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:51PM (#23684651) Homepage

    Doing a little something for developer mindshare. But then this is really just a way to push .NET.

    Questions:

    1. Anybody see Firefox adding support for other scripting languages as a result of this?
    2. Does this bode well for things like Moonlight and Mono?
    • Re:Look at ol' MS (Score:4, Informative)

      by Bryansix (761547) on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:54PM (#23684701) Homepage
      But AJAX works great in .NET already and it does everything you want it to do and you don't need to know javascript to make it work. All you need to do is set the right attributes in the controls you call and presto you have AJAX. The server takes care of generating all the javascript for it to work. Why they would move to this is totally beyond me besides malicious intentions.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by flanksteak (69032) *

        What's malicious about it? They're not going to be able to kill Ruby by adding it to Silverlight.

        I have no doubt that AJAX works just fine in .NET, but nothing gets developers more excited than a surplus of options. Even if the options don't add anything other than choice.

        It will be interesting to see how much traction IronPython and IronRuby are able to get with non-MS devs. I have no experience with Ruby and only a little with .Net and Python, but I keep hearing about these integrations in places I le

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by orasio (188021)

        But AJAX works great in .NET already and it does everything you want it to do and you don't need to know javascript to make it work.
        I code .NET for a living, and that is just not true.

        Ajaxcontroltoolkit is nice, but far from complete.
        Lots of things I have to do with JScript/JavaScript
        There are other frameworks that help with Ajax, but at the end of the day, you need to work with JS.
  • Not only... (Score:3, Informative)

    by ncannasse (976609) on Friday June 06, 2008 @01:52PM (#23684657)
    There's already Java (with GWT) and haXe [haxe.org]
  • by _bug_ (112702)
    Silverlight is going to allow .NET code, not just Ruby. Do we really need this? Do we really need to introduce multiple client-side languages like this? We're just creating more avenues to exploit clients. Adobe has had years to get Flash right and we're still finding exploits that can be used to install malware in the background.

    Couple that with injection attacks being discovered on popular web sites and the growing use of Deep Packet Inspection and, honestly, we might as well just allow everyone in the wo
    • by Dan667 (564390)
      Client side languages always blow. You cannot possibly cover every type of OS and browser so you are always going to have a half-assed solution.
    • You're right, we should make our computers secure and unplug everyone from the internet!

      But seriously, the security holes won't come from the ruby language itself, but from the silverlight platform. Build silverlight securely and the rest will follow. Build the OS securely, and the rest will follow. That's the point: layer security, then when you put a new layer on you don't have to worry so much about whether or not that layer is going to have a few holes.

      What we don't want to do is stifle new deve
    • by urcreepyneighbor (1171755) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:19PM (#23685041)

      Silverlight is going to allow .NET code, not just Ruby.
      Sweet jesus. It's ActiveX 2.
    • by Gat0r30y (957941)
      You make an excellent point. What exactly is the problem developers are having that this solves:

      Ruby developers would not have to go through the machinations of using something like the RJS (Ruby JavaScript) utility, where they write Ruby code and RJS generates JavaScript code to run on the client

      I'm not a Ruby developer and frankly don't know squat about it (web.py myself - its pretty darn bad ass) Is this really a problem for Ruby developers? With IronRuby - Django and the litany of tools available to developers a guess I'm just failing to see what this does for anyone? Any Ruby developers out there care to fill me in? Do you really need to run client side code? Does RJS not work for you?

  • Javascript to Ruby? And I thought we were all finally getting over the idea that XML is a great way to to do asynchronous apps. Json etc..
  • Hmmm... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Mr Z (6791) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:16PM (#23684999) Homepage Journal

    Maybe we need an infrastructure for this. An infrastructure that would be common among multiple languages. And then you could run any language that can target this common language infrastructure. And if you manage it properly it could be secure....

    See, that's sharp isn't it? Of course, it might seem like I'm parroting a bunch of buzzwords in this monologue, but I really have a message... I'm not just making small talk. I think that's enough pearls of wisdom in one post.

    --Joe
  • Rewriting Rails in javascript would accomplish the same.
    Stephan
  • just check it out :

    "eWeek reports that Microsoft's Silverlight platform will support Ruby client-side scripting, enabling ARAX â" or Asynchronous Ruby and XML. Would be cool to have the option to script client-side in something other than Javascript. 'In essence, using ARAX, Ruby developers would not have to go through the machinations of using something like the RJS (Ruby JavaScript) utility, where they write Ruby code and RJS generates JavaScript code to run on the client, Lam said. "Sure, you could do it that way, but then at some point you might have to add some JavaScript code that adds some custom functionality on the client yourself," he said. "So there's always that sense of, 'Now I'm in another world. And wouldn't it be nice if I have this utility class I wrote in Ruby...' Today if I want to use it in the browser I have to port it to JavaScript. Now I can just run it in the browser."'"

    sh@tload of stuff pumped into the net, as if previous buzzwords they are capitalizing on has gained any noticeable audience apart from some big boys.

    they basically say 'make room for arax whilst you are on ajax', and while representing all our data with XML, and client side scripting with ruby, AND, on microsoft's silverlight to boot !!!

    let me give you a heads up. the usage for even ajax is very low, because it is a pain in the ass to develop them (therefore costly) and maintain/up

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Jesus_666 (702802)
      Actually, AJAX is good for very large (have the manpower to deal with its complexitied) and very small (won't encounter its complexities) projects.

      I occasionally use it in a very rudimentary way - I use the AJ part and forget about the AX. What I mean with that is that I simply reload part of a page, whatever it may contain. It's a simple GET, no bells and whistles. The XMLHttpRequest part and the connection handling are abstracted away in a drop-in function that handles everything for me. It's not very f
  • RJS (Score:2, Funny)

    by boldi (100534)
    And when Microsoft sues You...
    Ruby in Jails ?
  • Uruk-Hai (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    this reminds me of the scene in the lord of the rings where Saruman proclaims he has successfully bred Orcs and Goblins and that crazy thing hatches out of a slimey membrane.
  • Sorry Ruby fans, the problem with this is that it is intended to add "distinction" to MSIE. OK, how is that a bad thing?

    Microsoft's monopoly control over personal computers allows it to do things that other companies couldn't do.

    If they introduce this on their monopoly platform, then web site designers who drink the MS koolaid start using it. Violla! anti-competition, people HAVE to use Windows to use those sites. Unless and until Firefox, Safari, or Opra support this brain dead feature.

    Any other company, w
  • by 192939495969798999 (58312) <info.devinmoore@com> on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:34PM (#23685267) Homepage Journal
    ruby ruby roo!
    • by hanshotfirst (851936) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:49PM (#23685491)
      Fred: So let's see whose really behind the phantom's plot to drive everyone off the Internet...

      Daphne: It's old man Gates from the haunted software company!

      Velma: We figured it out after unraveling the clue - Mr. Ballmer was responsible for the ghostly floating chairs!

      Bill: And we'd've gotten away with it too! If it weren't for you meddling script kiddies!
  • by ZephyrXero (750822) <`zephyrxero' `at' `yahoo.com'> on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:47PM (#23685477) Homepage Journal
    This does bring up an old question of mine... how come no one has made a Python plugin for web browsers, like Java has?

    Just think how much more awesome projects like TurboGears/Pylons could be if you could run Python on both the client side as well as the backend.

    Where's APAX when we need it?
  • ARAX? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Microsift (223381) on Friday June 06, 2008 @02:55PM (#23685601)
    Ruh Roh!
  • Learn JavaScript? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by KermodeBear (738243) on Friday June 06, 2008 @04:12PM (#23686729) Homepage

    [...] Ruby developers would not have to go through the machinations of using something like the RJS (Ruby JavaScript) utility, where they write Ruby code and RJS generates JavaScript code to run on the client, Lam said.
    They never DID have to go through something like RJS. They could just, you know, learn JavaScript. It isn't very difficult.
  • Why Ruby? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by qazwart (261667) on Friday June 06, 2008 @04:34PM (#23687087) Homepage
    Because Ruby on Rails developers will not have to switch to JavaScript in order to do AJAX like stuff.

    One of the problems in Web Development is using one language for the back end (whether Java, Ruby, or PHP) and then when you need some asynchronous action on the client side, you have to switch your syntax to JavaScript. It can be a bit of a pain. It's not that you may not know both JavaScript and Ruby, but that you have to keep switching between the two and that can make brain hurt.

    I take it that Silverlight will be doing the "ARAX" side of things. It's actually a neat idea. You can use a single language for both the Client and Server side, but where JavaScript is built from the ground up to live inside a webpage, Ruby isn't. I guess that's why there's IronRuby which will be a bit more "JavaScript" like.

    The big problem is that the Ruby interpreter will be Silverlight. Where as JavaScript is built into WebKit, an open source project, Silverlight is proprietary. If you create a new web browser, you can easily adopt WebKit and get a standardized JavaScript implementation. With ARAX, you're either going have to role your own or depend upon Microsoft to create a Silverlight interpreter.

    The whole thing is to push not .NET, but Silverlight in order to take over the Flash market. The funny thing is that Flash is probably peeking in popularity. The problem is one of the shear diversity of web browsing platforms that will be coming out soon. The iPhone is just the first such device, and already sites are removing flash from their webpages in order to make them iPhone compatible. Yes, Adobe is going to release flash for the iPhone, but what happens when Android comes out? Is Adobe really going to build flash for each and every version of an Android handset? They simply don't have the resources. Microsoft will find the same situation with Silverlight. They simply won't be able to support all the platforms that people want to use.

    In the old days, this was okay because it brought people into the Windows world. But, as people move from the desktop, Windows isn't the end all/be all platform it use to be. People like their iPhones and iPods. People will start buying Android based stuff. Symbian and RIM both are larger platforms. Windows Mobile is a distant fourth in sales this year. Measured in licenses, Windows Mobile is still more popular than the iPhone, but that doesn't include all the devices laying in some drawer gathering dust. Assuming a 2 year average product lifespan, Windows is fourth behind the iPhone which hasn't been out for a year yet. Can Microsoft (or is Microsoft even willing) to put Silverlight on all the various platforms out there? If not, developers just won't use ARAX.
  • oh boy... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Friday June 06, 2008 @05:26PM (#23687751)
    Another non-standard scripting implementation that only works with one particular browser. Didn't anyone learn from vbscript?
  • by OrangeTide (124937) on Friday June 06, 2008 @07:11PM (#23688967) Homepage Journal
    I hope you don't program Ruby like you post
  • by drew (2081) on Saturday June 07, 2008 @04:09AM (#23691843) Homepage
    The problem with JavaScript has nothing to do with the language itself, the problem is that no two browser implement it quite the same way. Adding another language that's only supported in a proprietary and still not very widespread plugin isn't going to help that one bit.

    Browser compatibility aside, JavaScript is actually very solid and is a great language to program in for people who actually bother to learn it (unless you are really stuck up about static typing or class based OO, in which case, sorry...) Why so many people work so hard in trying to convert Ruby or Java into JavaScript (e.g. RJS or GWT) or make JavaScript look like a language that it isn't (e.g. ASP.NET AJAX) rather than just learning the damn language I will never figure out.

    This of course brings me to JavaScript's second biggest problem - it's users. Why is it that JavaScript, apparently alone among languages, can attract so many programmers that have absolutely no desire to even try to learn the language? I've heard people who programmed professionally in JavaScript for years claim that it doesn't support inheritance. In any other OO language that would be the sort of thing that a new programmer would learn in the first week. Most experienced programmers when learning a new language would sit down with a book or a quickstart guide or tutorial of some sort and learn at least the basics of the language before they tried to take on a meaningful project, but apparently with JavaScript it's OK to just jump in and learn as little as you have to as you go along.

Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft ... and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor. -- Wernher von Braun

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