Before you start reading this post, please notice that everything I write is my own opinion and is NOT related to me being an MS employee, nor I used any contact that is not public. Enjoy.
|As we say in the holly land "the writing was on the wall". It was only a meter of time before Google will announce its own could services and application environment named Google App Engine.|
it is no secrete both Google and Microsoft are in a race to complete the amazing computer data-centers infrastructure in order to enable simple safe hosting of YOUR applications. Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and other large web presence companies have a Gazilion (that translate to a lot of data centers around the world with 10 of thousands of computers). For example, Amazon Web Services such as Amazon S3 storage service, Facebook has an application SDK enabling over 27K applications today. Google has a lot of services and APIs. And what about Microsoft, well Microsoft also have lots of services, probably more than any other company out there. By far Microsoft Live services is the most comprehensive web services offering by one company, and when you tie in other Microsoft assets like Live Messenger, and over 400M registered active Live ID users, you get a really valuable services that can enhance your app and even more important retain and acquire new users and it is all for free (up to a point).
But, before you can start using web services you need to build your application. And after you created your web app, you need to deploy it. And deployment can become an issue as you need to deploy on physical machine, either you but them, or more probably you choose a web hoster. The Web Hoster is responsible to host your app on web server and usually give you database and runtime for your app. And the big questions is what about scale and performance.
in Facebook, you can write application just for Facebook. Which is limited to Fackbook runtime. However, still, you can write cool apps and add-in, one of them is Microsoft Live Messenger plug-in for Facebook – where you can add Live Messenger capabilities to your facebook app or page.
Recently Google presented a Beta program for Google App Engine. "Google App Engine lets you run your web applications on Google's infrastructure. App Engine applications are easy to build, easy to maintain, and easy to scale as your traffic and data storage needs grow. With App Engine, there are no servers to maintain: You just upload your application, and it's ready to serve your users."
Sounds cool and fun right? Well, the answer is yes BUT. There is a big BUT build in to this offering. You have to code only in Python, and as great as python is, it is not the easiest programming Lnag out there to use – any I am rusty on using Python, which mean I need to do some reading tonight. Your database is bound to be represented only in objects, and unlike other ORM vendors, this implementation (which is easy as it can get) makes it hard on dev to drive complex SQL statements because ANY SQL you write is bound to a real object you created and used in your application. But these are relatively small obstacles on the way of Google to become one of the biggest virtual web application hoster in the world. And I am sure Google will bring in the Ad engine to tie in the $$$.
Where are Microsoft application hosting capabilities? All I can say these are exciting times. . .
Feel free to comments and start a discussion around these topics:
What do you think about Google Web Engine?
And how does Client Vs Web fits in?
(It took me about 2.5 hours to write this post)