The W3C can bless this approach or not, but with Google Suggest and now Google Maps, Google has thrown down the gauntlet. The modern browser is an XML-aware client. Savvy Web developers have known about these features for a while, but now Google has legitimized them and pushed them squarely into the mainstream. My guess is that we'll see an explosion of pent-up creativity as more Web developers discover, and begin to exploit, the full power available to them.
It always helps to have more than one tool in your kit and, in this case, I reached for the Blue Pacific Flash encoder. After produced the Camtasia movie as QuickTime, I used Blue Pacific to turn the QuickTime into Flash. It did compress the movie down to a manageable 8MB, but along the way the audio got munged. Here were my two mistakes. First, I shouldn't have let Camtasia compress the audio that I fed to Blue Pacific. Second, I shouldn't have deleted the AVI that contained the uncompressed audio -- that was just an unfortunate slip. I guess I could redo the audio track but, well, life is short, and lesson learned.
A final note about this column: Google Maps' client-side wizardry is way cool, but the real heavy lifting -- as Wil Rivers wrote me to point out -- happens on the back end. "The product underlying Google Maps is the Drill-Down Server from Telcontar, along with associated mapping software," Wil writes. "For a description of Google's implementation of this product, see http://www.giscafe.com/magazine/index.php?run_date=21-Feb-2005, and for a description of the server itself, see http://www.telcontar.com/products/dds/index.html."
Amazing stuff. Thanks for the pointers, Wil!
Former URL: http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/2005/02/23.html#a1184