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I agree with many of the points you have made in this thread, it is indeed a worrying trend.

Howver, I am not sure it is fair to tar WebSQL with the same brush as these other technologies. WebSQL was on the standards track, and in fact started there. The main reason it isn't any more is that Mozilla representatives insisted on kicking it off the standards track instead of fleshing out the spec to be truly independently implementable.

The most common use of SQL you see is in iOS/Android-targeted Web apps, because WebSQL has been around there fore a few years while IndexedDB is new and isn't shipping in production quality anywhere.

Google is actually pretty sanguine about replacing WebSQL with IndexedDB.

Better examples of this trend would be:

SPDY as a replacement for HTTP, actually used in production by Chrome talking to Google servers, not a hint of it on any standards track.

VP8, where Google's single-source implementation is more authoritative than their spec, and no hint of it on any standards track. No apparent interest in putting it there.

(I realize Mozilla is on board with VP8 due to the patent licensing issues with MPEG, but consider the risk of giving Google total unilateral control of video codec design. I would have hoped that Mozilla insisted on taking VP8 through a real standards process before signing on wholeheartedly.)




Maciej, why do you write as if Mozilla doesn't ask for (not "insist" on) things with Google and fail to prevail? We do that all the time. Some in Mozilla are still waiting for the good thing to happen.

In VP8's case, what alternative do we have that isn't OS-dependent? We can't afford the gangster fee.

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I am wholeheartedly convinced that you asked privately. It might have made a difference if Mozilla had publicly asked for an open standards commitment. As things stand, Google got PR cover for a power grab. I also think it was a reasonable choice for Mozilla to sign onto VP8 anyway, given the lack of better alternatives for you. However, I think VP8 is still a better example of the phenomenon of Google's increasing promotion of purely Google-controlled technologies than WebSQL is.

The video codec situation is really quite sad. There is no technology option that is all of an open standard, RF licensed and sufficient quality. Vendors all have to make their choices out of the imperfect options we have.

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