A Working Group for Web Apps

There’s a new Working Group on the W3C block: the Web API Working Group.

The W3C Web API Working Group is chartered to develop standard APIs for client-side Web Application development. This work will include both documenting existing APIs such as XMLHttpRequest and developing new APIs in order to enable richer Web Applications.

This is very good news.

Some developers have, in the past, dismissed the Worldwide Web Consortium for being too slow moving and disconnected from the realities of working on the Web. The existence of this Working Group shows that, not only can the W3C act in a nimble, agile fashion but that it can recognise and address the ever-changing problems faced by web developers.

The scope of the Web API Working Group covers the technologies related to developing client-side applications on the Web. In particular, programming interfaces for client-side development, including network requests, timed events and platform interaction.

This Working Group should adopt, refine and possibly extend existing practices where possible.

The charter looks excellent. The group’s activities will clearly have quite a bit of overlap with other groups (accessibility, mobile devices, internationalisation). I think it’s great that there will be people dedicated to the bigger picture when it comes to rich Web Applications — too often, the hype and the promise of technologies like Ajax can blind us to the problems and realities of ensuring universal access on the Web.

Working Group deliverables must have a strong emphasis on accessibility, internationalization and security.

Most importantly of all, developers are going to have access to resources and recommendations. The first draft of specifications could be ready as early as December.

In the meantime, a little birdie told me that we can expect to see a Web API blog that will feature handy JavaScript hints’n’tips, so keep your eye on the Working Group’s page.

Posted by Jeremy on Thursday, November 24th, 2005 at 3:25pm


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November 2005

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