Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Sun and Google in bed together, but is it love or just sex

I’ve just been pointed at the Sun and Google Strategic Partnership announcement. Now this might be old news to some, but there are a few things of interest here.

http://wcdata.sun.com/webcast/archives/VIP-2166/


First off there is quite clearly an Old Sun boys love in going on, and how much of that is hype, is anybodies guess, but these guys are thinkers and have proved time and time again that thought when implemented well, leads to things that can change the world.

What Microsoft will make of this is open to suggestion but one of the quotes I’ve seen on a British discussion list attributed some not to complimentary comments to Microsoft’s Steve Balmer.

I first heard the concept of a replacement for desktop applications run as thin clients via the web about 5 years ago. Now I’ve always believed in the thin client and so its natural that I would support this view, but the real question is how it will be implemented. Google are the experts at implementing web based services so if this is the case then Microsoft’s dominance could face a challenge. Of course the real question is whether this will be better for the customer or not.

I’ve used Open Office and it is very, very good (although I also note that I am currently typing this in Word for Windows so draw your own conclusions from that as well). Also a while ago I saw a piece attempting to predict what the web would become and what it would contain which featured Google very prominently.

I’m thinking I would be giving this more credence if Steve Jobs was on stage as well, and it does seem to have been staged so that Sun could rattle a few sabres rather than signifying something significant. Time will tell.

Another point that was made was the idea of looking at the web and services available online as an API which is of course the basis of Web 2.0 which I am seeing more and more reports and predictions on. It was curious though that when I walked around the office and asked a completely unrepresentative sample whether they knew what it was that nobody had a decent answer. Of course when the same question was asked in a pub with some deep tech friends of mine were around, it was a completely different story and a very good conversation ensued.

Edit: This is how the New York Times reported the announcement

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