The buzzword or buzzwords for 2012 is disruption or paradigm shift. We saw the launch of Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 (and the related .NET 4.5 and Visual Studio 2012), which essentially is Microsoft announcing that it's willing to burn its existing markets to the ground to get into new markets. Windows 8 brought a new development paradigm, a new app store, risks, and opportunities. A lot of the push behind Windows 8 was driven by the bigger trend of tablets making substantial inroads into the traditional PC space.
Then, just as we thought Apple was going to take over the world, Android significantly dented Apple's mobile business, to the point where Android outsells iOS outside of the United States.
The driver behind it all is next-generation, Web-based technologies. It is now very rare for me to come across a Web service that offers a SOAP connection because it is all REST; HTML 5 is everywhere; and jQuery and other frameworks make the Web feel as rich, if not richer, than the desktop.
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Justin James is an OutSystems MVP, architect, and developer with expertise in SaaS applications and enterprise applications.