andrew burke





TIBCO General Interface: Web 2.0 is the new Visual Basic

Posted on: 2006-11-30

When I'm out in California, I try to get to a few SDForum events in Silicon Valley. On Tuesday night I went to the eBay offices (some places still cordoned off after the bombing) and saw a presentation from TIBCO General Interface about their really slick AJAX toolkit.

Their system pulls in structured data from various Web Services, parses it into an intermediary data format, and displays and manages it using a collection of very sophisticated widgets and controls. The entire interface is done in JavaScript with DHTML and AJAX, and it includes panes, menus, grids, sliders, editable text fields, moveable dialogs and windows, drag-and-drop, etc. In fact, their entire system, including the IDE, runs directly in a browser (currently only Internet Explorer and Firefox) without any extra plug-ins. The developer experience is comparable to using something like Visual Basic in a native compiled environment, but it's entirely browser-based. It's certainly one of the coolest technologies I've seen in a while - not needlessly flashy, but extremely rigorous and mature. They've been doing some serious work here and it shows. There's a screencast that seems to cover most of what I saw in the demo.

Some things I found interesting:

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