At Web 2.0 Expo last week Curl released beta 2 of the next version of the platform codenamed "Nitro". "Nitro" allows Curl developers to take their applications beyond the desktop so you can deploy Curl applications as desktop applications with an expanded security sandbox that enables more functionality. "Nitro" doesn't have quite as much access to the system as things like Adobe AIR which can be a good thing for the enterprise market that Curl is gaining traction with. In some ways I think it's similar to JavaFX's deploy to desktop functionality. It's becoming clear that a big part of any RIA technology is that ability to customize the user experience and give them the flexibility to consume content on both the web and desktop.
The beta 2 includes a number of bug fixes and performance enhancements including some new features:
- Enhanced application performance through improved compiler register allocation
- New default look and feel for controls
- Ability for Curl applets to control page views when using the embedded browser API
- Support for encryption in SQLite APIs
- Ability to leverage the newly released Curl Development tools for Eclipse (CDE)
The encrypted SQLite databases are nice and the improved controls are a great touch. Curl continues to support Mac, Windows, and Linux with the Nitro release as well.
They had a great presence at Web 2.0 Expo NYC. I'll be posting my slides from my talk later, but I got some great feedback and there were a lot of people interested in the RIA aspect of Web 2.0. I think the market is still alive and well. You can see past info on Curl here.