The Future of Software

[ad_1] About 6 years ago, when I started thinking of software development as a career, I had a conversation with a friend, a C programmer working for a local firm, about the future of software. My opinion was that desktop applications (what we know them as today) will be run on remote servers in the future. My argument was that with the advancement of technology, we wouldn’t need to install software and run it locally. He thought I was silly.

Today, with the growing popularity of Google Docs (and there are lesser known others), my silly projections are starting to look more and more like reality. I think it’s important for anyone thinking of going into software development to at least be aware of this. Software and web development are slowly merging into one. Going back to Google Docs, you can edit text, spreadsheet, and presentation files purely online with no necessary installation, and then save the files locally once done. No, this isn’t a Google Docs promotional ad (I actually used it a couple of times, and it didn’t take my breath away), but this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to user applications.

Let me present a hypothetical example of a popular application being run remotely. Suppose Photoshop, a graphics editing application, ran on servers administered by Adobe. To use it, I would purchase a license (just as I do now when I buy the CD), and use the software through a browser (or client application). I would perform some tasks, each one firing off a request to the server, and see the results on my screen. While the computing power required from the servers would be massive, technology can only improve, so it’s a matter of time. In addition, the current cost of distribution could instead be invested in needed hardware. Is this example far fetched? I don’t think so. The cost of hardware keeps dropping, while the cost of distribution can only rise. Eventually, due to the need to stay competitive and technological progress, companies will consider…

Sourced from by Alex Bekker

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