ASP – but pay no attention to those other guys.

So with ASP.NET 2.0 you can really see where MS has learned from the other languages. Take for instance that ASP.NET 2.0 encourages you to leave the source on the server so that you can modify it on the fly. Even legacy ASP was better that way. Then what about Ajax? The guys over at ‘.NET rocks!’ said that they have a hard time getting it to work, and when you do they don’t want to touch it, for fear it will break. That being said there is a nice script.aculo.us type control set that is available for Atlas. The Atlas Control Toolkit gives some nice ‘hood open’ controls. Yes, the source is included. Refreshing, yes? This is a throw back to MS idea of community… read: let your employees blog and release code examples. While artificial, it leans in the right direction. The May 4th show talks more about Atlas, giving the impression that Kent Alstad is quite comfortable with Ajax and JavaScript.

They sound fascinated with JSON, and as a relatively new technology I guess that is good. The thing that strikes me funny about all this is that the ‘Community’ enjoys giving kudos to those who lead the .NET way, but to no one that created the technology they are using, unless though, it comes from the MS camp. The reason I find this funny is everyone in the OSS community especially LAMP are always openly learning and acknowledging other technologies even if they are competitive. For instance, I love to learn from cutting edge camps like RoR. Someday you might find a Google or Amazon built on Ruby. That is how I feel MS is but you will never hear them say RoR or even PHP. Very rarely will you even hear the word Java. So is Microsoft doing business like McDonalds? Marketing like there is no one else in the world. Look where McDonalds is now, a third rate fast food dive. That is, of coarse, unless you live in the Midwest. In that case it is ‘da bomb’ (which is also new vocabulary in that part of the country). Microsoft fail??? I wouldn’t go that far, but who is to say they won’t become the next IBM or even Digital.

Try this next time a MS marketer (or IT poser) tries to preach ASP.NET to you. Tell them you have decided to go with RoR because your biggest concern is cross platform user experience.

Why would that be a problem? Because everything Microsoft is doing is pushing toward Avalon. MS has never like the web. Granted they have made some money there, but it is a technology that, as a whole, they haven’t been able to control. The W3C has kept them from forcing everyone to buy into their silo. MS would love to alleviate the consumer from the burden of choice and competitive pricing. This was emphasized to me quite emphatically during the ‘.NET rocks!’ interview with Tim Huckaby. He through around things similar to ‘Everyone will be writing client apps, the web is out of style.’ I really liked it when there was threat of an IE vs. Fire Fox fight presented itself. Tim quickly dismissed it with ‘Only the technically elite use Firefox’. Is that because the captive MS Windows users have no choice, unless they learn to download and install something else? It was reminiscent of another IE discussion about IE7’s lack of support of CSS. The argument was made that there were customers that had developed against the broken support and so they were hesitant about moving forward with support. I like how additional features become a legacy support issue. Trying to cloud the uneducated mind with pointless drivel. Which further reminds me of fixing the ’hydro-coupling in my router cloud’ being the reason for my T1 not passing data.

What is that about history, or sticking your head in the sand? As a developer or simply a consumer, I implore you to pay attention to the other guys and educate yourself on the inner workings. If only enough to make a market jargon free decision.

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