More on Digital Product Platforms

by Luke Wroblewski June 1, 2009

At this year's All Things Digital conference billionaire entrepreneur, Mark Cuban, outlined a viewpoint on digital product platforms matching my recent write up.

“That’s where we are on the Web, evolutionary applications not revolutionary applications. And we are moving applications to new platforms: mobile platforms, TV which allows us to interact with them far differently.” -Mark Cuban, All Thing D 2009

In a nutshell, the revolutionary apps are happening on new networked consumer device platforms. Google clearly seems to be aware of this and is throwing a lot of effort into making the Web a richer and more powerful development platform. From the release of their own browser, Chrome (designed to take advantage of the newest Web presentation technologies), to betting big on HTML 5.

At last week's Google I/O event, Google Engineering VP Vic Gundorta outlined a few of the exciting capabilities HTML 5 brings to Web browsers:

  • The canvas element: a powerful way to draw graphics on a web page using Javascript
  • The video element: embed video on a web page like you embed images today (no plugins)
  • The geolocation APIs: make location, whether generated via GPS, cell-tower triangulation or wi-fi databases available to any HTML 5-compatible browser-based app
  • AppCache and Database make it easy to build offline apps
  • Web workers: a mechanism for spinning off background threads to do processing that would otherwise slow the browser to a crawl

O'Reilly radar has links to demos of these HTML 5 technologies in action. So don't count the Web browser out as a compelling development platform just yet!