Podcast: Taking Ajax offline

Rich Internet applications are stepping out of the web browser and onto the desktop, helped along by a new set of toolkits. Web developers are able to code against desktop resources using familiar languages and toolkits such as JavaScript, Ruby on Rails, or HTTP interactions. Offline access for web applications is about much more than planes, trains, and automobiles — it can accelerate performance and integrate with established desktop interactions as well.

Offline web applications are a hot topic, but often misunderstood. In this week’s podcast I step beyond the myths of offline web applications with special guest Brad Neuberg. Brad has spent years digging into reliable storage methods available within a browser environment, and most recently developed the Dojo Offline Toolkit for complete offline access. You can directly download the Offline Web Applications podcast or head on over to the podcast blog post to read more about discussed topics.

Beyond disconnect

Offline web application capabilities are about more than a missing Internet connection. Application data is stored on a local hard drive instead of a far away datacenter, boosting your load times. Web applications become searchable components of the local operating system, displayed inside a Windows Vista Search result or Mac OS X Spotlight. Your application data might become fully integrated with desktop calendar, address book, or web feed platforms, exposed to any requesting application including mobile phone synchronization or personal backups.


The offline web application space is a hot topic of discussion which may or may not apply to your product. Is offline access a graceful enhancement on top of your existing application? Are customers clamoring for it? Will you take your application offline using Adobe Apollo, Firefox 3, Joyent Slingshot, XULRunner, or Zimbra Offline? Those are just a few of the toolkits we know about this month, yet more are coming.

It’s time to demystify. I hope you enjoy my podcast with Brad Neuberg, one of the experts in the space of offline access for web applications, as a quick way to get your head around some of these larger issues in the future of web application development.