March 31st, 2007
I won’t lie, I don’t really care for data interchange formats (or data exchange formats, or standardized format exchanges, whatever you want to call it), so that’s why my eyes glossed over while reading about Aral’s SWX project. This is all despite the fact that I myself have actually helped create what could be called a data interchange format. Now after all the drama surrounding spewed forth I decided to give it a look and you know what? I’m impressed. In theory anyway.
I love the idea of leveraging Flash to produce faster results because of my long-standing obession with speed. I like SWX because it’s the closest thing to basically encoding data directly into Flash. Since some serialization always has to take place, why not serialize strings or arrays directly into a SWF? I can’t speak for Aral’s implementation, but to me it’s clearly one of the better ideas when it comes to Flash-specific solutions. If you have control over the client and everything server-side then the your solution need only be reliable. SWX offers real advantages to those who want them.
Since I’m one of the developers for FZip, which arguably an alternative format, I’d like to note that FZip and SWX are two very different things. FZip is intended to transfer files, not data (like an array or a string), although both systems could arguably do each other’s job, they wouldn’t be very good at it.
I’m ending this post with a couple quotes from Aral’s hilarious angry pro-SWX rant. Keep in mind I actually like SWX and wish to see it evolve, I just find these little tidbits very humorous when quoted out of context.
- WTF? Who died and elected you Pope, Mr. Hultberg?
- You see, Flash developers are an ignorant bunch who live simple lives.
- He is the white man come to educate the natives with the Word of the Lord.
- [Humans are] an unpredictable, complex creature that may just be scratching his balls with one hand as he uses your lovingly crafted interface with the other while simultaneously devoting 73% of his attention to Carmen Electraâ€™s rack in the trailer of I Want Candy thatâ€™s blaring on his TV screen.