Adam Rifkin's long Weblications post is a richly suggestive rumination on where we are and where we are going network service wise. At one stage he maps the trajectory of Adam Bosworth's career as exemplary of a more general direction:
I believe Adam's journey represents the evolution of the software industry over the last two decades: from desktop applications running on single-machines that helped individuals with productivity through word processing and spreadsheets and email, to enterprise applications in corporate data centers that helped workgroups and companies with productivity through automating business processes... and now to collaborative applications available to anyone from anywhere on the Internet, leveraging an increasingly-connected and ever-faster world. The web is the platform that subsumes the others.[Relax, Everything Is Deeply Intertwingled: Weblications]Bosworth is VP of Engineering at Google.
I'm still stuck on the notion that in less than two years Google will have a million-node computer operating as a single, optimized operating system for web-based applications. Google gets it. Most professional developers look at web-based applications and all they see is "the lameness of web pages as a UI", as Paul Graham called it. They grumpily say in Eeyore fashion that web apps are the legacy apps of the future. They don't see that the power of Weblications is that "simplicity and flexibility beat optimization and power in a world where connectivity is key", as Adam Bosworth put it.[Relax, Everything Is Deeply Intertwingled: Weblications]