Rico and more

Posted in Ajax, General, Javascript, Programming, Web, XHTML, XML at 3:04 pm by matt

Ok, I understand that Sabre used the word ‘Rico’ to mean that they’ve got a framework for ‘rich applications.’ However, whenever i read or hear about rico, i can’t help but think of one of two things.

  1. Tony Soprano — How many times do you hear the mobsters mention the ‘RICO’ laws?
  2. Rico….. Suave!

Now, I think Rico is exactly what the “Rich Web Application” community needs. Not because of what it is, but because of who is behind it. Sabre is a fairly large company, and they’ve been sponsoring Rico, finally releasing it into the wild. It’s nice that toolkits exist, but you really need an all-encompassing package that supports lots of functionality.

It’s hard to develop an application with lots of little pieces. Prototype is nice, but it doesn’t have all the pieces there. Backbase is great, but it’s not open source, and costs some real money. Dojo will be nice, when/if it gets here. I’m not criticizing, they’re new — they just need time to get everything put together.

For something as complicated as a rich web app framework, you really need some financial backing to put enough people on the project to make it worthwhile. Lone developers go so far, but we need more. I think that’s what we’ve got with Rico. Dojo might have it, i’m not sure how many people from Jot work on Dojo, and how much money Jot has / will have to develop with.

Anyway, I think Sabre’s shown some “enlightened self interest” with releasing Rico, and I think that it’s going to take the web app framework community to new, very good, places.

Oh yes — i’ve added Rico, Drag and Drop w/ Prototype, the Javascript Gamelib, and CPAINT to the ajax toolkits list.


  1. Bill Scott said,

    June 14, 2005 at 8:00 am

    Being the ‘rico’ guys, I have to chuckle. When we decided to call it Rico we also laughed about the whole Rico Suave thing and Uncle Rico, etc. We have joked about putting a shirtless, leather-jacketed figure as our icon 😉

    I really agree with your assessment. It is hard to do piecemeal stuff and have a comprehensive approach.

    At Sabre we actually do have a fairly sophisticated web component framework. Although some of it is not intended to be open-sourced and others have to be un-entangled from our J2EE, JSP/tag approach we had at the beginning. For example we have an incredible editable grid component that is ajax-enabled and can support as many records as your server can hold in memory (scrolls them in via ajax).

    The idea behind Rico was just to be as lightweight as possible. Meaning that you have your normal markup and just apply d&d, effects, behaviors, ajax as needed. This allows it to be baked into Rails, PHP, Java Server Faces, Struts, ASP, etc.

    Our plans is to get a grid out that can handle large amounts of data and be styled your own way. Also we will add some more behaviors: tabs, layout, splitters, etc.

    Thanks for your comments. Good observations.

    Bill Scott

  2. Bill Scott said,

    June 28, 2005 at 10:46 pm

    We have added the LiveGrid behavior which allows unlimited data to be viewed in a web page through a normal scroller. Read my Death to Paging blog at: http://looksgoodworkswell.blogspot.com

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