Boris Mann

Open Source. Community. Decentralized Web. Building dev tools at Fission. Cooks & eats.


Yahoo gets Odd to go beyond the browser

Yahoo has acquired Oddpost. A couple of weeks ago I got a heads-up that this deal had been consumated and would be announced shortly. Little did I imagine then that they would pick a Friday evening to make the announcement, but that's the way it goes. It's a big one. Oddpost turned the idea of what you could do with a browser upside down, by producing a clone of Microsoft Outlook in JavaScript and DHTML running in MSIE. Since then, they have labored in relative obscurity, growing a customer base, raising VC money, adding people, and staying out of the way. Then Google launches Gmail, with a very Oddpostish interface, and someone at Yahoo says "Hmmm, I've seen that somewhere," calls up Ethan and Iain and their new VCs and asks "Are you for sale?" and the rest is history. Now Google has competition on elegance of user interface. Scripting News: Yahoo has acquired Oddpost

I've just been using my Gmail account for the past week or so. It's pretty good as far as web apps go. I went over and read the Oddpost blog, since the app itself runs in IE only. Turns out they read RSS feeds in the same interface. Should be a good fit for Yahoo Search's Add to My Yahoo links.

The web as a platform is back. Now is it "beyond the browser", or beyond HTML?