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what the voices in my head tell me to write

Saturday, August 12, 2006

my take on web 2.0 

About 8 or 9 years ago Javascript got powerful enough to do DHTML. Suddenley loads of sites sprouted bizzare javascript effect ranging for the humble image roll over to all kinds of weird stuff. I even saw someone develop something that took all the content of a small site and mashed it into a huge single page that was way to big to view in your browser. When you clicked on a link it scrolled your browser viewport to the content you wanted.

The early versions of Dreamweaver were basically for enabling average users to do stuff like that without knowing the first thing about Javascript.

Then people started to realise that all these bells and whistles were literally a waste of time. Especailly over a 14.4 modem. The Jacob Nielsen came along and pointed out they were inaccessible, often confusing and just dumb.

So for the last few years we have had no bells and whistles to speak of. There was the craze for drop down menus. They started out with lots of Javascript but now they are much more streamlined. Sites with lots of javascript were always called amateurish.

Then came AJAX. Google Maps and Flickr were my introduction to the new rise of Javascript. A colleauge of mine didn't even notice that you could change the title of an image in flickr without loading the page again it is so slick. With Ajax there came things like script.aulicio.us and Dojo that offered a new way of doing all those DHTML effects we were told were so bad. Admittedly they are far more accessible and usuable than their forebears but they essentially are the same.

Perhaps in about 2 years there will be a backlash against javascript in pages and we will be back to square one all over again.

Permanent link and Comments posted by Rob Cornelius @ Saturday, August 12, 2006

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