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The "MSDN Camp" answers Joel Spolsky

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    This is Joshua Trupin's weblog. He's the executive editor of MSDN Magazine. He answers Joel Spolsky's now famous "Microsoft lost the API Wars" post.

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    Image of duelling parties, wielding handbags (Chanel or is that Channel 9 brand?) at dawn in an Eddie Izzard sketch.  Nice Smiley

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    Pat Rice

    raymond sez "and don't be afraid of obsolescence because version 2.0 of technology xyz will still support 1.0 clients"

    I think Joel's point is that technology xyz will never make it to version 2.0, because the MSDN Magazine camp will have abandoned it to develop technology xyzzy 1.0, which is really cool but (despite the similarity in name) completely incompatible with technology xyz.

    Meanwhile, the Raymond Chen camp struggles to support in perpetuity the poor dumb saps who believed the MSDN Magazine camp when they said, "Technology xyx is The Future, let's all start writing apps with it."

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    Joel also has some rather far-fetched ideas about where applications should be and are going.  IMHO, web-based apps suck and almost always require something to be installed client side (case in point, JRE invades!) which totally negates the purpose of a web-based app in the first place.  People also aren't soley coding for Windows just because the API set is easy, they also want to make money as well and thats where the market share is.

    Personally I've seen a lot of areas today that still bode well for the Raymond Chen Camp.  Take SMS 2003 - Windows 98 is still supported as well as the legacy client.  This is an enterprise application but Microsoft recognized the need for this OS is still prevelant on people's networks so they archetected backwards compatibility in the product (archetected - not hacked together something to make it work).  AD is another great example where not only can you still authenticate with an older OS but Microsoft provides tools like the AD Client Extensions for backwards compatibility but to take advantage of anything new requires an OS upgrade.  However on the other hand there are areas that backwards compatibility isn't 100% such as Visio 2003.  But I don't think this is because people inside Microsoft are trying not to make things backwards compatibile as its more the case of them evaluating customer requests on the features they like and use the most and then improving on those rather than wasting resources on those that are not.

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