1) If you care about accessibility or SEO at all, this tool is not for you.
2) Once you begin an "app" using HYPE, you're locked into their platform. There's no feasible way to maintain rendered animations without the software. I want to be able to bust open my favorite text editor and update stuff on-the-fly when I need to.
3) Just getting off of a project that involved heavy use of CSS animations, transitions and transforms, I can honestly say they're not that hard -- _especially_ to achieve the effects they show in their demos.
4) The types of websites they're promoting as good use cases are the types of sites we all used to be annoyed by when they were created in Flash. Not that this tool forces anyone to create crappy websites, it does enable it though. No splash screens plz.
IMHO, CSS is not meant for keyframe animations. It's not. WebKit might have a @keyframes implementation, and it does work for basic animations. But it just doesn't make sense for heavy animations.
CSS-based effects should be used as added sugar if the browser supports it. Maybe your modal windows opens with a subtle rotation/scale effect, or your slide show has some 3D perspective effects. But your entire website/app shouldn't hinge on a single piece of software trying to solve your animation woes.
Most of the examples shown on the Hype site are – and I don't want to be overdramatic here – terrible. They're the kind of inaccessible, hard-to-update, ploddingly-paced, opaque sort of web front end I had to wean myself off of half a decade ago, and open web standards and mobile compatibility don't suddenly make these practices okay again in 2011. I'm kind of dumbfounded at Gruber gushing that these constitute "a glimpse of the future."
I am excited about Hype, though. Not as a tool to build sites, but as a tool to build the kind of informational animations and animated elements for which we used to use Flash. I'm sure I'll be building all sorts of things that go into semantically-formed pages with Hype.
Indeed. They have a very David Siegel Creating Killer Websites feel to them.