Do you have any experience with Google's AppInventor? If so, what is your impression. Is it valuable? Is it even a good development platform for short / small projects? Is it for non-programmers only? What's it's future?
Johan Pelgrim, The Netherlands
SCJP 1.4, SCWCD 1.4, SCBCD 5.0
I've played a little with AppInventor, and it reminds me in some ways of a very early implementation of JavaStudio (long before Netbeans came along). I found it to be a fun tool to play with, but as an experienced developer found it a bit frustrating in it's limitations. As with JavaStudio I think it's a great tool to show off to non-developers, or possibly to mock-up concepts but in my opinion you wouldn't want to try use it for a serious project.
The concept and implementation are both good, but I can't help feeling constrained. For this reason I'm not sure what sort of a future it might have, I don't see it being marketed by Google very hard. If the past non-developer IDEs are anything to go by it will either quietly vanish or alternatively turn into a more serious developer-focused tool. That said: I may well be wrong about this, and soon we'll all be out of a job