Tim Bray Joins Google

Tim Bray, on joining Google as a “developer advocate”, specifically relishing the competition between Android and iPhone:

The iPhone vision of the mobile Internet’s future omits controversy, sex, and freedom, but includes strict limits on who can know what and who can say what. It’s a sterile Disney-fied walled garden surrounded by sharp-toothed lawyers. The people who create the apps serve at the landlord’s pleasure and fear his anger.

I hate it.

This is, indeed, the core difference between Android and iPhone: Apple’s tight control over native apps. I think it’s incorrect to call it Apple’s “vision of the mobile Internet’s future”, though. Native apps are not the Internet.

Later on, Bray writes:

I’m going to have to get savvier about HTML5-based applications, because a lot of smart people think the future’s there, that the “native app” notion will soon seem quaint.

What’s interesting here is that the iPhone is a better system for HTML5 mobile apps than Android. For all the attention Apple is getting regarding the tight control it maintains over native iPhone apps, I think what they’ve done to enable native-like mobile web apps — with no control — is mostly ignored.

Monday, 15 March 2010