Google Updates App Engine In Advance Of 'Big Announcements' - InformationWeek

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2/10/2009
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John Foley
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Google Updates App Engine In Advance Of 'Big Announcements'

It's been a busy few days for Google App Engine, the "preview mode" platform-as-a-service with which users deploy applications on Google's IT infrastructure. Google yesterday released an updated App Engine software development kit and late last week updated the App Engine road map with new APIs.

It's been a busy few days for Google App Engine, the "preview mode" platform-as-a-service with which users deploy applications on Google's IT infrastructure. Google yesterday released an updated App Engine software development kit and late last week updated the App Engine road map with new APIs.New in the App Engine SDK, version 1.1.9, are Python standard libraries, a bulk uploading client for applications, updates to the App Engine data store, and other enhancements. The SDK lets developers build Web applications using the Python programming language. Google has indicated that it will expand App Engine to support other languages, but for now, the choice is limited to Python.

There's no cost to use App Engine it its preview release. An App Engine account includes up to 500 MB of persistent storage and enough processing power and bandwidth to support up to 5 million page views per month.

Google's App Engine team last week provided an updated road map of features in development. In a blog post, Google's Joe Gregorio wrote that the updated road map is a prelude to "some pretty big announcements in the near future."

The road map calls for APIs to be delivered over the next six months that support the following capabilities: running scheduled tasks; task queues for performing background processing; receiving and processing incoming e-mail; and sending and receiving XMPP (Jabber) messages.

Given the nascent state of App Engine, few large companies have built and deployed applications on it. For that reason, I was interested to see that Best Buy is now talking about how it used App Engine to relaunch Giftag, a browser applet that lets users create gift wish lists that can be shared. In the video below, the Giftag development team talks about its experience using App Engine.

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