I’ve decided to take a somewhat controversial decision in regards to the public status of most of my projects. I currently feel a pretty huge personal pressure for high quality standards while my larger projects are public on GitHub which is making programming for these projects a drag rather than a fun hobby, so until further notice I’ll keep the larger ones in private until I feel comfortable with them being public again.
Something that’s become popular in the past few years is Electron. If you don’t know what Electron is it basically allows you to wrap a web application in a Chrome based window and have it run “natively” on Windows, Mac OS X and GNU/Linux distributions, if you want to know more go read up on it yourself.
Now you’re probably wondering where I’m going with this. Well I think this is by far one of the worst things to have happened to systems development, despite being marketed as native it really should be “native”. Yes it wraps around to give you access to native APIs such as Windows’ notification system and such but at heart all Electron is is a Google Chrome window without a navigation bar, you could literally just launch chrome with the –app directive.
I can kind of get why you’d want to use HTML and CSS to make UIs for desktop programs (believe me, XAML is cute but can be a bitch to debug), it’s relatively easy to work with, does a lot for you and doesn’t overcomplicate. Despite that you should be challenging yourself by learning something new instead of just shoving stuff you do already into an environment it shouldn’t be applied in. A new challenge and the knowledge that comes with it is never bad!
Not to mention the ridiculous amount of memory you’d need to run multiple Electron based applications at once, people are using the excuse of ‘People have a lot of memory nowadays anyway’ as an excuse to not memory manage their software properly which by far is the most dumb thing of all. Just because there’s a lot of space doesn’t mean all of it should be used, you need space to move around as well. I used to frequent a Slack organisation but basically just gave up on going to it because the application made my computer completely kill itself, and my computer is pretty decent. Considering that writing this same program in C#, or any compiled language really, it would run a million times better I just said ‘fuck it’ and stopped bothering. Now lets get the –app directive of Chrome back into this, if you’d use this instead of the “native” electron application and conserve memory space by using the already active instance(s) as far as that’s possible with Chrome anyway.
Now to hop onto a more controversial related side topic. The current situation with Chrome’s dominance feels a lot to me like the situation with Internet Explorer back in the 90s, granted I wasn’t actually there for that but you can make a few links to this and ActiveX which was finally fully deprecated and removed with the dawn of Microsoft Edge. Of course Electron isn’t half as retarded as ActiveX was but certain links are there. That’s how I feel about it anyway, feel free to call me retarded in the comments.
And alternatively you could just use your browser because most people have one open all the time regardless…