Tuesday, 2 July 2013

One standard

As software developers, often what we need from our tools and platforms is "one standard, many providers". We need to be able to transfer our skills from one platform to another, which means standards, but to have innovative options available, we need multiple providers. Targeting dozens of different web browsers is not ideal, but having one standard that they all support is great. We want to write for one abstract platform that is standard across all the different implementations of it.

What we usually get instead is "many providers, no standards" or "one provider, take it or leave it". HTML5 was getting close to being "one standard, many providers", but then each web browser decided they would only support different, incompatible parts of the "standard". There were web browser back-ends like webkit that seemed to simplify everything, but now Google is creating their own version of that project, which will lead to incompatibility again. We converge, we diverge, we never get to ideal, and sometimes we move away from it.

Mokalus of Borg

PS - It's frustrating, is all.
PPS - And, I guess, most days it doesn't affect us so much.

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