Tales from the Smart Client

John Gossman's observations on Avalon development

September, 2004

  • Tales from the Smart Client

    Why Avalon?

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    Software developers are by nature a skeptical lot. Our scientific and mathematical training has taught us to question everything. This makes it hard to be enthusiastic sometimes: we just don’t have the cheerleader genes. So why am I so enthusiastic about...
  • Tales from the Smart Client

    Is the Canvas model scalable?

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    Miguel has a list of concerns with the Avalon architecture. I'll start with the easy ones: Canvas model: Avalon's canvas model suffers from the same problem every other retained system suffers: they are hard to scale in the general case. I worked on AutoCAD...
  • Tales from the Smart Client

    It's a big, scary world in here

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    MS is a big place. It is so big, I really don't know much about the other parts about the company after five years. There is a huge sales and marketing organization, and though I have friends who work there, I don't know much about what they do day-to...
  • Tales from the Smart Client

    What's in a name?

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    I recently got a new job title. I do exactly the same work, but the description has changed. But, I'm not saying job titles aren't important, at least not in a large organization. Job titles are important for initial contacts. Generally in a meeting of...
  • Tales from the Smart Client

    Where's the technical beef?

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    I started this blog to talk technical, and so far all I've done is fluffy human-interest stuff. Some of this was meant as background, but I am facing one difficulty: the Avalon bits out in the world are kinda old and crickety. Some of the cool stuff I...
  • Tales from the Smart Client

    I knew Joe Beda, Joe Beda was a friend of mine...

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    ...but Joe Beda was not "the lead developer on Avalon". Note the key word: "the". The New York Post ran a story that said Google had hired Joe Beda, "the lead developer on Avalon." Sounds pretty serious, doesn't it? Some background to clarify. At MS,...
  • Tales from the Smart Client

    Introduction

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    I am a developer working on an unannounced Avalon-related project. Enough to say I work with the Avalon APIs every day, and have for about 2.5 years. The big news here is that Avalon is going to run on Windows XP, instead of being a Longhorn-only technology...
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