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Make “write once, run anywhere” a reality with mobile

‎09-30-2013 05:51 AM - edited ‎09-07-2015 09:29 PM

I recently read a short but interesting article in the SD Times by Alan Zeichick; “Zeichick’s Take: Write Once, Run (nearly) Anywhere”. His take seems to be that in the current technology landscape, there are several examples where the goal of a technology that enabled Write Once Run Anywhere (WORA), is in fact very hard to deliver. He uses the example of Java, which in its hay day was supposed to be the language that delivered on the promise of run anywhere. But, the reality has been quite different. In our current world of mobile, where we live with two divergent and incompatible camps—iOS vs. Android.  When you think of the current situation, it’s hard to see how Java can ever deliver on the original promise of run anywhere…


Just because we can’t see Java delivering on this promise doesn’t necessarily mean that we should just give up on write once, run anywhere. Instead, I believe we should re-double our efforts to create solutions that allow us to deliver and excellent experience for our users—regardless of the platform they choose. In fact, I think current web technology (HTML5, Java Script and CSS), have come a long way to enabling what may well be close to WORA.    


In the recent webinar  I did with John Jackson of IDC, we shared a number of findings from their recent mobile maturity research.  You can take the Mobile App Development maturity survey and get feedback. I found one of their findings surprising. It was that in the enterprise mobility space, a significant portion of development is in either Web or Hybrid technologies with less than 20 percent on native apps. That means around 80 percent of development is related to technology that is multi-platform (runs anywhere). 


This finding is consistent with what we’ve been doing with HP Anywhere. We’re also leveraging web technology to deliver apps that run more or less wherever a user wants to work; from their phone to their tablet and even in their browser on their desktop. Our native container runs inside of iOS (including iOS7), android and of course inside of the browser. WORA! Ok, to be fair it’s not “everywhere”.  “Everywhere” is a tall order and there will be always some specific outliers where a technology may not reach.  So, ultimately Allan’s title was more correct than not.  Write Once Run nearly Anywhere is a pretty good goal—especially in a world where there is so much rapid change and evolution.


Are you trying to achieve a goal of anywhere?  How are you going to write once and run nearly anywhere?






Join us on Twitter @HPAnywhere, here at the Apps for Mobile Blog and of course at the HP Anywhere

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