Zimki – the spirt lives on …

Although Zimki is to shut down on Christmas Eve, the ideas behind the service live on. Two new offerings, Horuku and AppJet, offer variations on the idea of hosted application development/deployment.

AppJet, funded by Paul Graham‘s Y-Combinator, is very similar to Zimki, being a server-side JavaScript platform. No details yet as to what sort of paid options will be offered (all accounts are free at the moment). Unlike Zimki there’s no plans to create an open-source version. I like the easy “build a Facebook app” feature; and I guess this is the sort of light-weight applications that they hope to attract.

Although Heroku uses Ruby-on-Rails technology, rather than JavaScript, it is closer to the original Zimki idea; but rather than take the hard (and ultimately unsuccessful in Zimki’s case) road of building an open-source platform from scratch, Heroku takes an already popular open-source project and offers it wrapped in a full on-line development and deployment environment. Again, being in beta, there’s no indication as to what pricing model it will operate under, but I would think that it will attract more “serious” projects than AppJet since anything developed under Heroku is pure Rails which means it can be migrated to any other Rails hosting environment; so no lock-in. The online editor is excellent and whatever about its merits as a hosting service it’s by far the easiest way to learn and explore Ruby and Rails, even easier than this…

If Facebook apps are your goal but you wish to use Ruby rather than AppJet’s JavaScript then not to panic, as being Ruby some bright young spark (no, not me I’m afraid) will already have done a lot of the hard graft for you…

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2 responses to “Zimki – the spirt lives on …

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