Three loose ideas

I’ve been thinking about what I want to do with this assignment, and I have come up with a few very vague ideas. I think whatever I do I am going to have to learn a new programming language by the looks of things, so it’s going to be either AJAX, Ruby or ActionScript 3.

Not so long ago I saw something in a Web Design special of Computer Arts about Microsoft’s Silverlight 2, specifically an item on Deep Zoom (an example can be seen from the link). I liked the idea of being able to create a portfolio that was more like a real-world exhibition and apparently, Silverlight is the way to do that. I am not sure I would want to create a portfolio site, but perhaps an exhibition would work well if I can find an artist who wants to show something off.

Ruby on Rails is a recent web development framework that essentially borrows bits and pieces from other programming languages in the hope of creating something simpler and easier to understand. The examples of work I have seen that use RoR have been quite clever, for example; Wayfaring.com allows users to create custom maps based predicably on Google Maps. People have posted various different kinds of maps including favourite drinking spots, locations of celebrities, etc.

The last thing I considered was creating an Adobe AIR application, but again I am unsure of what kind of app I would like to produce. I find the AIR apps really convenient and undemanding of system resources, so they effortlessly run in the background. One I use very frequently is Twhirl, a desktop Twitter client. Another advantage with this method of app creation is that the language is universal to Windows and Unix. 

A fair bit to think about! I think I will need to see how much learning will be involved in each of these languages. I already know a little ActionScript, but my experience is quite minimal.

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