XMPP and Strophe: Two of the Best Technologies of 2009

December 21, 2009

A great thread was started on Hacker News yesterday asking what the best technologies were that people worked with in 2009. I was thrilled to see XMPP and Strophe listed not once, but twice!

Here’s what one user had to say about it:

Earlier this year I got tasked with implementing a system which involved multiple mobile clients talking to a rendering server. The mobile devices had a fairly beefy browser (Nokia N900), so the client was clearly suitable to be delivered as a web app. On the server side, we already had a realtime graphics system I had written earlier, to which the web clients would need to talk over a bidirectional connection with near-realtime responsiveness.

[My work partner] showed me some demos of realtime XMPP web apps built with Strophe.js, and I was rather impressed. Then we went over our system’s client/server design and how it would map to XMPP, and I was sold.

We ended up using many more XMPP features than I had initially imagined, including publish/subscribe and multi-user chat rooms. Had we gone with my original approach, these concepts would have been implemented in some haphazard way in the render server itself. Now the rendering system just talks to the XMPP server like any other client. It’s stable, scalable and fast.

The built-in tools in XMPP are quite powerful and can be applied to a huge range of problems. The layered extensions like pubsub and multi-user chat provide robust and well tested building blocks on which to create great things. There is now a decade of shared knowledge and experience baked into XMPP and its many extensions, and it’s great to see more and more people discovering this.

I’m really excited to see what will come in 2010!

XMPP and Strophe: Two of the Best Technologies of 2009 - December 21, 2009 - Jack Moffitt