Sam Ruby, Senior Technical Staff Member, Emerging Technologies Group, IBM
Everywhere you look, it seems that there is a new technology that needs to be mastered. AJAX popped up out of nowhere, becoming a virtual overnight success after seven years of being ignored. The darling of OSCON 2005 was Ruby on Rails, previously rarely heard of.
Web 2.0. Internet O/S. Google O/S. P2P. A steady stream of handles have been created that attempt to allow us to grapple with this steady stream of new technologies. And while it is true that bandwidth continues to broaden, cycles are going spare, storage grows ever larger and cheaper, and content keeps pouring from the firehose, there is a fundamental limitation that we are consistently hitting. And given our collective math and science backgrounds, this limitation is one that we tend to be blind to.
The thesis of this talk is that we can discover these limitations by looking into biology. If you sort biological organisms by size, you will see a point at which the strategy shifts from making larger cells to making more cells. Cells are surrounded by a trust boundary.
This is the fundamental limitation that we can't program around. To give a concrete example: Bloglines can't index feeds it can't reach. Yet we persist in developing protocols that abstract away the network, and wonder why such strategies are doomed to fail.
Technologies and platforms including AJAX, Bit-Torrent, Google, GreaseMonkey, PHP, RDF, REST, SOA, Syndication, XML, and web services will be explored relative to trust boundaries.
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