Jon Udell has a thoughtful piece on Microsoft's new Infopath. I can confirm that when I got my early demo from Jean Paoli, Jean confirmed that they really didn't have any interest in XForms. But I'm having trouble seeing Infopath's future.

It's essentially an application constructor. Time was, people built applications with Visual Basic or other Windows programming tools, and a few here and there on X Windows. The Web swept all that away, and the vast majority of new apps deployed to the business desktop are browser-based and interact using HTML forms and clever hyperlink engineering. People like that, and IT departments really like not having to deploy software to the desktop.

Infopath seems to be trying to find some daylight in between these two approaches; applications where you want more interactivity and responsiveness than HTML-in-the-browser can give you, but where you're not ready to undertake building a client-side app.

author · Dad
colophon · rights
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February 26, 2003
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