Why will AJAX win?

AJAX Info writes about the network effects that are driving AJAX adoption in the enterprise and consumer space.
Programming languages in general benefit from network effects. To boil this down we could say that as more people use a particular language, the value derrived from using it increases exponentially. An example of this might be that as more people start using Ajax, more resources, information, and 3rd party components become available.
Another key point is that AJAX is a continuous, rather than a discontinuous technology. It builds on existing skillsets that web developers have in a way that some other technologies don’t.

Ajax offers something else too. It`s a way for web developers to leverage their current skill sets to achieve the first goal: build better applications. JavaScript and DHTML aren`t new, and more importantly: corporations are loath to acquiring 3rd party software components that use technologies their in house developers have no skills with. It doesn`t make business sense to jump into technologies that have rarified skill sets unless you have to because it`s expensive to be retraining your employees or outsourcing development work to specialized consultants.

He also presents a nice comparison of AJAX to some alternative rich client technologies. The upshot? Vendor Independence and Skill Set Transferrance are the major differentiators. Read the whole thing!

flash && AJAX: two great tastes that taste great together?

Alex Bosworth articulates a vision of what Flash is good for that matches what I’ve experienced. Specifically, Bosworth mentions video (one or two-way) / audio (one or two-way), combined with data sockets (“push” instead of “pull) making Flash a crucial component of next-generation web applications. Macromedia recognises this, and is working hard to make Flash and Javascript work and play well together.
Why don’t more people think of using Flash in this way? In a word, positioning. Bosworth writes: I do think there’s a very distracting red herring here, and that’s Flash’s rich user interface abilities. Every flash demo I’ve ever seen focuses on great looking shiny buttons that look like you took a slick win32 app and plopped it down in a browser window.

Launch Pad: 12 product launches at web2.0

SocialText: Opensourcing the whole enchilada!
Rollyo: New customized search engine
Joyent: Web-based outlook clone with microformat support
BunchBall: Hosted platform for building social applications and games with flash
RealTravel: Travel Social networking
Zimbra: Open source web-based outlook killer with incredible plugin support
ZVents: Web-based event search
KnowNow : Receive notification the second your RSS feeds update
Orb : Turn your pc into a media server
Wink : social bookmarking with search
AllPeers : toolkit for building desktop apps that run in firefox
Flock : social internet browser