Why do a reader only for one publication? (Adobe vs. Microsoft for developers)

Kevin Tofel asksWhy would I want different reader apps for different publications?”

He’s talking about New York Times’ Reader.

I’ve tried the reader, and I remember seeing prototypes back when I worked at Microsoft. This was an app designed to show off Windows Presentation Foundation, er, .NET 3.0. Some things that that technology does that the Web doesn’t do are much better text control, better typography, and better resizing of the app on different resolution screens.

But, it doesn’t matter. Google Reader is eating the lunch of this approach. Why? Cause we’ll put up with a little less readability in order to share items with other people, in order to see the information on multiple computers and platforms, and the ability to mash up the content with content from other services ala BlogLines, NewsGator, or Google Reader or other RSS aggregators.

The other trend I am seeing is the stunning growth of Adobe love among developers. Everywhere I go I hear “Flash, Flash, Flash.”

Next week Adobe is showing a bunch of us a bunch of stuff that’s going for developer’s love in an even bigger way. Microsoft is under full scale attack in the developer world. I’ve had developer after developer ask me the past few days “what is Microsoft doing?” Even companies that are seemingly in Microsoft’s camp (like TeamDirection, which is a .NET shop using Sharepoint) are talking about going with Flash, er, Flex and Apollo, which lets developers build standalone applications with Flash technology.

Why is this happening? Because Microsoft is leaving influentials to the Macintosh. Developers who choose Macs (and I see more and more every day) are forcing a move away from Java and .NET toward Adobe Flash stuff.

Microsoft will fight back with WPF/E, which is a .NET 3.0 runtime that runs everywhere, but will it be enough to keep developers from moving away?


It’s an Amazon day

OK, if I were an investor I’d be thinking of buying some Amazon stock.

So far today I’ve interviewed three startups and two of them say they are using Amazon’s S3 Web services (JamGlue, a music mashup service, and TeamDirection, a project management software both use it — these two services could not be more different). It’s not just today I’ve noticed this trend, either. Amazon is getting GREAT love in startup land for making it easy to build services on top of the S3 storage service. Every entrepreneur who has decided on Amazon RAVES about the service.

It’s amazing to me that Microsoft, Yahoo, and Google are letting Amazon get such a huge lead here. These companies will never switch off of this infrastructure if Amazon keeps delivering this level of service. It lets these companies startup for very little money, and provide services that are very advanced. It’s like owning your own data center without the headache of buying new servers as your startup expands.

Oh, and I’m really bummed I missed yesterday’s Photowalking in San Francisco (Eddie took my place). The photos that Thomas Hawk got are stunning. Some of thsoe photos are hosted on SmugMug (the CEO and team showed up) which are, you guessed it, hosted on Amazon’s S3 service.

Gotta run, another interview coming up.

Oh, and what did Amazon show me this morning? I can’t tell, but it was surprising. Can’t wait to talk about it. Damn NDAs.