More than ten years have passed since the creation of Lightstreamer. Now that Lightstreamer 4.0 is generally available, it is a good moment to look back at what happened in the history of Push/Comet and to share a short analysis of the current trends.
CometD 2.1 now supports annotations to define CometD services and clients. Annotations greatly reduces the boiler plate code required to write a CometD service and also links well with new CometD 2.x features such as channel initializers and Authorizers.
A year ago I wrote an article asking Is WebSocket Chat Simple?, where I highlighted the deficiencies of this much touted protocol for implementing simple comet applications like chat.
The World Bike Tour uses Comet to show real-time positions and telemetry of cyclists.
Today, many Comet servers come with vague information regarding their performance. However, performance is one of the most important features of a Comet server, which gives it the reason to exist besides a traditional web server.
Things are stabilizing and still changing in the realm of WebSocket support. I’ll quickly summarize the current state of WebSocket support in various browsers and highlight the differences in versions.
Hookbox is the web-push server that integrates directly with PHP, Django, Rails, Java servlets, ASP.Net, and any other HTTP-based application framework. This visual tutorial guides you through ten simple steps, giving you an idea of Hookbox’s capabilities. It will only take you a few minutes to work through, and no installation is required!
One of the most interesting things I have seen from our clients over the past few months is the myriad of ways in which they use Comet technology. We had a very specific problem in mind when we build WebSync, namely real-time updates in a browser with ASP.NET and IIS, and it solves that problem admirably.
I’m excited that the WebSocket protocol is picking up so much steam — it’s a great abstraction for real-time web programming, and I can’t wait to see it in every browser. CSP is a current-day architectural drop in for WebSocket until it reaches ubiquity.
In this fourth installment of the “Hello World with Lightstreamer” series, we will focus on a new feature that was released with Lightstreamer Server version 3.6: Action Message Format (AMF) support for Flex applications.