The Smart Client / Web Application bet

Paul and I have a friendly discussion and now bet going.

The discussion (and bet) centers around our discussion of Smart Clients vs. Web applications:

1. My first post, Is “Smart Client” a “Dumb Idea”?

2. Paul’s reply, No Rob, Dumb Terminals are a Dumb Idea

3. My reply to Paul, Show me the money

4. Paul’s acceptance of “the bet”, The Web App/Smart Client Discussion Continues

In Paul’s latest post he defines a list of “Smart Clients”. However, I definitely stated in my first post what the exceptions were (such as games), but I think the best example he gave was: Quicken/Quickbooks. Quickbooks has both a “smart client” and “web” version. I personally use Quickbooks “smart client”, but I know many other people that use Quickbooks “web” version.

But as Wim correctly pointed out in Paul’s comments, my point was to come up with a list of Smart Client applicatons that could be either (key word of either) be a web application or a Smart Client. Tools such as Windows Media Center don’t fall into that list, sorry 🙂

Here is the criteria I would use for our contest: the appliation must:
1. Written in .NET (not required, but would be nice)
2. Can exist as a smart client or web client; there are obviously — as I so carefully mentioned in all my posts on this topic — things that cannot be web applications. Our decision critieria here needs to be applications that could legitimately be one or the other, such as Quickbooks.
3. Should have no install/uninstall, i.e. “Click once” enabled. I see this demoed a lot, but have yet to run into an application.

On December 1st of 2006 Paul and I will meet and see who won. Paul I’ll buy you a steak at Del Frisco’s next year just for the conversation. The bet is for a signed $1bill adminting defeat 🙂