A history lesson

This post from Joel Spolsky offers a very prescient view of AJAX applications. We are currently seeing a flood of open-source Web 2.0 SDK's which all make developing web versions of applications easier and easier.

However, I also find myself wondering if a true winning SDK is going to appear that offers something truly unique, truly compelling, which will allow it to become the de facto standard that all web applications will use. That will be the one all developers will need to know, that will grow by leaps and bounds.

Usually it takes a large company to evangelize a new tool kit. I started writing commercial applications when Windows 3.0 was going out the door and Microsoft did an amazing job of encouraging WinSDK development. With more applications on Windows came more users and, ta da, Microsoft got huge.

But, RoR wasn't pushed by a big company but via grassroots, viral spreading. Will something similar happen in the AJAX sphere to push a standard there?

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