Google web workshop targets developers

The search giant will host a two-day developer workshop at the end of May, featuring hands-on code labs and 'fireside chats' with Google engineers
Written by Adrian Bridgwater, Contributor

Google is stepping up its efforts to engage developers, with a two-day workshop called "Google I/O: Web Forward", scheduled for 28 to 29 May at the Moscone Centre in San Francisco.

At a time when its competitors see extending developer involvement as key to increasing application growth and platform validity, Google's event will feature keynote speakers, hands-on code labs and "fireside" chats with selected Google engineers.

Google I/O: Web Forward will extend the developer resources already found on the Google Code pages, which include application programming interfaces (APIs), project-hosting options and a community portal.

Despite the fact that creating more Google applications may drive more users to its pages and ultimately feed an ecosystem to increase Google advertising, the company has said it has "no specific agenda" for this event, aside from promoting the web as a platform.

News of this event comes just a week after Microsoft hosted its MIX08 conference, where it set out its latest batch of tools for web developers, including Internet Explorer 8, Silverlight 2 and Expression Studio 2. Adobe is also making similar moves to win over the hearts and minds of web developers with its AIR and Flex rich internet application technologies.

Reports have suggested that Google will use Google I/O: Web Forward to showcase its own cloud infrastructure platform and APIs. This strategy echoes Yahoo's recent batch of Hack Days in London and Bangalore, which have acted as training and developer-engagement exercises for independent programmers.

Sessions at Google's event will cover Ajax, JavaScript, APIs and tools including Google Gears, social networking, Maps, and the use of Android. There will also be a special "unconference" programme, whereby attendees will be able to submit topics for inclusion in the second day's sessions, as long as their proposals are voted through by fellow developers during the first day of the event.

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