Developer Week in Review

Tomcat purrs, Amazon dictates, and HTML5 brands

Having somehow found myself in the bizarro world where the Patriots lose to the Jets, I scanned the InterWebs to see what other strange things might have occurred in the past week. My report follows.

The new cat in town

Despite all the hype that mobile platforms and dynamic languages such as Python garner, a lot of the web world still runs on Java. Thus, the news that the first stable build of Apache Tomcat version 7 was released is significant.

For those who have not had the pleasure, Tomcat is a fully functional J2EE (that’s Java 2 Enterprise Edition) server, but without the big (or any) price tag. Version 7 brings along with it support for the 3.0 Servlet API and JSP version 2.2, upgrades sure to bring a sparkle of delight to your local Java web guru.

Amazon knows best

Thinking about selling your Android apps through the new Amazon App store? Amazon thinks they have a better idea what that app is worth than you do. Evidently, apps submitted for sale can have a suggested retail price, but Amazon will determine the actual selling price. The developer gets 70 percent of the selling price, or 20 percent of the retail price, whichever is greater.

So, if you put your masterpiece — “Enraged Avians” — into the store with an MSRP of $20, Amazon could decide to put it on sale for as little as $5.70, netting you $4 (20% of $20 = 70% of $5.70). What this means is that if you want to make a certain amount off each sale, you’ll need to set an MSRP five times that amount to make sure you actually get it. Hilarious hijinks are sure to ensue as Amazon and the developer community dance with pricing levels.

HTML5, now with 100 percent more logos

HTML5 logoThere may be a battle brewing over which video codec to use with HTML5, and people are still debating if HTML5 is a good replacement for technologies like Flash, but the biggest issue facing the new standard has clearly been settled: HTML5 now has a logo. (The logo appears to either be co-branded with the Hunter Safety program or Tropicana orange juice.)

According to the W3C, the new logo is:

… an all-purpose banner for HTML5, CSS, SVG, WOFF, and other technologies that constitute an open web platform. The logo does not have a specific meaning; it is not meant to imply conformance or validity, for example. The logo represents “the Web platform” in a very general sense.

We can all rest safe in our beds tonight, knowing that we now have a logo to represent the “Web platform, in a very general sense.”

What new logos await us in the coming week, and can they possibly use a more garish color scheme? We’ll find out next week, in this same space. Suggestions are always welcome, so please send tips or news here.

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