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David Chandler's Journal of Java Web and Mobile Development

  • David M. Chandler


    Web app developer since 1994 and former Developer Advocate with Google now residing in Colorado. Besides tech, I enjoy landscape photography and share my work at ColoradoPhoto.gallery.

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The ISV is coming back (thanks to AppEngine)

Posted by David Chandler on November 18, 2009

Someone at last night’s AJUG meeting articulately expressed what I’ve been thinking for the last several weeks as I’ve been learning Google AppEngine: this platform gives the independent software vendor (aka “the computer guy at your church”) a new lease on life. Why will AppEngine bring back affordable custom programming for small business?

  1. There are no servers to configure. Sys admin and tech support are the bane of every developer’s existence, which makes AppEngine a developer’s dream. Code, test, and deploy. No sys admin needed.
  2. There’s nothing to buy up front: no servers, software, firewalls, backup solution–not even hosting fees until you exceed AppEngine’s generous usage limits.
  3. You can log on to your AppEngine application with your Google account (Gmail) or Google Apps login. For many businesses, Google Apps is a compelling alternative to running your own file and document servers and paying for MS Office on every desk. If everyone in your business already has a Google Apps account, it’s a no-brainer to use AppEngine for your custom apps, too.

As more folks learn how to create AppEngine apps in Python or Java, I expect there to be low-cost applications you can purchase for your business as well as pre-packaged applications that developers can buy and customize for your needs. The fabled long tail of software niche marketing is set to EXPLODE.

Shameless plug: if you’ve always dreamed of having software that could do (whatever) for your business, but thought it was probably too expensive, drop me a note. The game has changed.

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