vowe points to a lengthy essay from Joel Spolsky about the relevance, or lack thereof, of the Windows API in today's market.  The article makes some rather interesting assertions about the choice between developing rich client applications and web applications that is faced by every software developer today.  It's a long, but excellent read.  One of my favorite lines:

No developer with a day job has time to keep up with all the new development tools coming out of Redmond, if only because there are too many dang employees at Microsoft making development tools!
Can you spell InfoPath?  I knew you could.
Anyway, the article hits on some of the challenges that IBM is facing around the Workplace strategy and products -- backward compatibility and support of the installed base of Lotus Notes users, vs. building for the future.  Indeed in the comments on vowe's site, David Richardson wonders if IBM is a salmon swimming upstream with the Workplace client technology.  My answer is no.  I think the vision of the Workplace client technology is to be the best of both worlds -- the richness, responsiveness, and ease of use of an installed client, with the flexibility, interoperability, and management characteristics of a browser.  It's a big bet, and time will tell if IBM and the rest of the eclipse.org community is right.  But if the headlines, analyst reports, and most importantly, customer interest coming out of last month's Workplace launch are any indication, the answer to this either/or dilemma is actually both.
Link: Joel on Software: How Microsoft lost the API war >

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