AndyC, I'm a little puzzled here. I would die for a browser-based IDE. Just think of the integration with the web: easily getting libraries and documentation, getting snippets faster and up to date, better search etc. Granted, all these exist today, but I feel they'd be better. Also if the sites he mentioned in the talk, beautifiers, linters, tutorials, and the rest, if they could be integrated to the IDE, it would be even better. Also a multiuser experience like in Google docs with chat etc, would also be a killer. And yet you say yawn. I just don't get it.
I'm not saying the online bit is "yawn", I'm saying you don't need to be constrained to trying to work within a web-page model, constrained by what a browser provides, in order to gain any of the productivity benefits online functionality can offer. And you certainly shouldn't have to give up all the benefits of a local rich client to get some online functionality.
BTW, his comment you quoted about if a computer breaks, is on the mark. It seems whenyour laptop breaks, you'd rather install the OS, the IDE, SCCS of some sort, connect to your repository, download the project and dependencies, and i may have forgotten some steps
Did you miss the "if the internet was working" bit? The only reason he could do his presentationat all was because he'd already downloaded and set up a completely local copy of the whole environment. Everyone in that room could have lent him a laptop and he'd still not have gotten anywhere. That's such an epic fail when trying to convince the world they should use a browser based tool that it's not even funny.