By Tony Richards
I remember my first web application. It was late 1996 / early 1997 using IIS 3.0 from my MSDN subscription CD’s.
I was using a home grown b-tree system for a database and I needed to expose the data to a web application. My solution was to write COM wrappers for my domain specific data objects and use ASP 1.0 + VBScript for the web application. I was thrilled that I could use COM and IDispatch to hook all of my C++ code to VBScript and use that not only for developing web applications, but also for hooking it up to VBA within Microsoft Office applications.
I really liked the solution. Using VBA, we could do mail merges, export data to spreadsheets, etc.
Except one thing… I really hated HTML and the cross browser compatibility (or rather, incompatibility). The lack of standards caused a hellish nightmare.
I know “hate” is a strong word, but it didn’t even come close to describing my antipathy for web development.
My first web app was my last web app for 13 years. Anytime someone would even mention “thin client” in a design discussion, I’d cringe in disgust… if someone mentioned it seriously, I’d figure out a way to stay out of the client side development, or I’d update my resume and start looking for a new job.
I really despised HTML web app hell… but time marches on, and so do technologies.