Tuesday, October 03, 2006

XML11: Amazing AJAX Toolkit
XML11 is a very exciting AJAX toolkit inspired by the X11 protocol. It allows Java applications to be rendered on a web browser, but also under Java Swing and Java AWT. In addition (and very wild), as there is an X11 server implemented (WeirdX) in Java, you can also have an X11 application working in a web browser!

Seeing xcalc and xeyes rendered on Firefox, via AJAX, WeirdX, AWT and X11 is borderline bizarre. Check out the Google TechTalks video by Arno Puder, it is quite amazing. I would have liked to have seen Firefox running inside of this convoluted set of protocols and environments inside of Firefox.

He also coins a wonderful phrase: "JavaScript is the assembly of the Web...", basically claiming that while JavaScript is fundamental to the Web (or at least AJAX), no sane person wants to use it (like assembler today: is is a "pain" to write in). You would prefer to use a proper high level programming language like Java, C++, etc. I have to agree...

Logic code can either run on the original platform (X11, Java) or can run on the client via a Java-bytecode-to-XML-to-XSLT-to-JavaScript (wow!!) cross-compiler. This is configurable at the class level, I believe. If something on the browser needs a component on the server, some transparent middleware looks after making this connection...

They are also looking at getting VNC (via a VNC Java client) to work inside of a browser, and looking at something that works with .NET...

Some other Java/AJAX toolkits/frameworks:

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