It seems to be Spring season for rich-interface technologies. Most trying to blossom with a story about how they’ll rescue developers from the perils of web programming and its dirty tech of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. These stories are told with a shadow assumption that the only reason developers put up with this trinity of web specs is because of what they get back in form of ubiquitous distribution.

That assumption then leads to the fallacy that if only someone could come along and give us a competitive distribution story using more “advanced” and “rich” interface technology, they’d surely be golden. That all web developers are waiting on is someone to save them from the browser mess and deliver them the clean desktop-development experience of yester-century.

In the immortal words of Eric Cartman: Bullcrap.

As a web developer, I’d like to confess my deep appreciation of the restricted canvas that we get from the basics of the web. We’ve entered an era where the browsers are good enough, compatible enough, and, most importantly, our understanding of how to use what we got has been raised to a level where things are finally looking pretty good.

I actually find the development experience between a modern web-application framework, Firebug, and current JavaScript libraries more than just bearable, I find it downright pleasant. Even more so because it’s born out of the pragmatism of not needing to be perfect. It has evolved over a decade of experimentation.

On the user experience side of things, we’re not even close to tapping out the potential of HTML. The majority of web sites and applications still suck. And if most developers and designers can’t make a clean run with the training wheels and constricted playground of HTML, then we probably are in no rush to start playing with a Ducati on the Autobahn.