Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Google App Engine + Opensocial = Web 3.0?

Web 3.0 has been defined earlier by Eric Schmidt as applications living in the cloud that are pieced together. It is a fundamentally different application model that we have ever seen in computing before. Google App Engine is a big step towards this cloud computing vision. It lets developers run your web applications on Google's infrastructure. How does App Engine fits into the Web 3.0 world? Let us review the definition by the CEO of Google:

Take Google App Engine and OpenSocial and a couple of other APIs to get to Web 2.5. It is the beginning of The Big Switch - the coming age of information utility. They let developers focus on innovation rather than the undifferentiated heavy lifting of IT operations, such as setting up and maintaining scalable servers, databases, storage, and networks.

Google is not the first big company to offer utility computing or platform as a service (PaaS). Amazon leads the space with its successful Simple Storage Service (S3) and Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). There are very interesting analysis and comparison of Google App Engine and Amazon AWS on the SmoothSpan Blog.

App Engine costs nothing to get started and there are dozens of examples to check out in the Applications Gallery.

App Engine applications are easy to scale as your traffic and data storage needs grow. The open source Scalr aims to offer similar Auto-scalability on the Amazon AWS platform.

Welcome to the cloud computing age! Let clouds do the dirty work of operations and let developers innovate.