200829 may

Google IO Notes

(This post is a work in progress and probably contains mistyping and perhaps factual errors.)

My brief take:

  • GWT is awesome.  With the new version, the Javascript generated from your Java code will almost universally be better or at least as good as the Javascript you would write.  You also get incredible leverage you get toward targetting different platforms (including iPhone and Android,) and the productivity and satisfaction boost of using advanced development tools that give you refactoring, autocomplete, and no spelling mistakes – features only possible with strongly typed languages like Java.  Lombardi demonstrated a sophisticated process diagram application that they developed 3 times on different platforms (Flash, Dojo, and finally GWT.)  Their experienced conclusion was that you lose nothing by using GWT.  GWT doesn’t really hide anything from you – it just gives you Java and gives you the leverage of virtualizing your Javascript.
  • AppEngine is a great platform, especially for startups since it’s free up to 5 million page views per month.  Here are a few bullets.
    • Learning the AppEngine datastore concepts (e.g. “entity groups”) might be tough for many people, and you need to follow some distributed programing techniques, unfamiliar to most web developers, to build scalable applications.
    • Python is back!  AppEngine is Python only for the forseeable future, so Django – an excellent web framework – is the likely platform for traditional web applications.
    • Serious limitations in the current version:
      • No full text search.  There are some hacks to get close right now, but it’s no Google.  This features is likely to be added.
      • No long running processes.  Your requests are limited to 5 seconds and a smidgen of CPU.
      • No data import or export.  You will need to do everything through requests.
      • No outgoing requests.  You can’t open a socket, but there is supposedly a curl library.
      • 500Gb of storage.  This only should be a limitation for a very few people.  If you have media files, store them on S3.  If you’ve got that much user data, maybe you should work on making money instead of porting your app.
      • No way to exceed the 5 million page quota, although estimated pricing for future versions was revealed at around 10-12 cents per CPU hour.
  • Android is pretty darn cool.  I didn’t spend much time at these presentations, but the demos had some features that put the iPhone to shame.  I loved the pull down status bar.  Touch and pull down and the status bar shows expands to detailed interactive versions of your notifications.
  • New APIs for YouTube, a Google Earth browser plugin, and a number of other presentations were compelling, but were not in my area of interest.

There are no responses so far

Leave a Reply