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Browser as a Platform

Host: David Geary

Over the past few years, the browser has emerged as the dominant platform for writing applications, and software development has undergone a profound shift, from operating-specific applications to web applications that run in the browser.

The early days of web application development were difficult. Browsers and HTTP were not originally envisioned as a platform for applications, and developers could not count on standards such as JavaScript and CSS always behaving the same in all browsers. Because of those drawbacks, web application development was difficult in the early days, as developers had to implement stateful applications using a stateless protocol.

Today, the browser has truly emerged as a viable application platform. Web application frameworks, such as JavaServer Faces 2.0, Google Web Toolkit, Ruby on Rails, and Flex have made it much easier to implement powerful web applications with rich user interfaces similar to those found in desktop applications.

In this track we will explore web application frameworks and other emerging technologies that have propelled the browser into the forefront of application development.