Sunday, 18 February 2007

The first step in creating a mash-up is...

Ok. I finally got the Teqlo public beta humming along. After registering again sans space in my username, I had only one more hurdle to cross - installing the Flash plugin into Portable Firefox. This almost had me stumped but a missing element on the Teqlo home page gave me a clue that I need one final piece before I could start to play.

Once you get in Teqlo, there isn't really a lot to see yet. As Rod Boothby has already explained that they "need more widgets", which they hope will emerge through 3rd party developers.

Now, my question is how easy it Teqlo to use?

  • Overall I didn't find it as intuitive as Yahoo! Pipes, which is another mashing tool I've been playing with - I was expecting Teqlo to be very drag and drop orientated, but instead it is more like select, select and drag.
  • At the moment you also have to have a good understanding of what widgets can interact with each other as there are (currently?) no visual clues about the potential relationships between each widget as you add them to the canvas.
  • I also get the feeling that writing a sophisticated application in Teqlo is going to be a bit like writing a sophisticated database in something like Microsoft Access or (dare I say it) Lotus Notes - the bit that often lets them down is the poor interface, i.e. it takes a bit of skill, time and effort to do it well.

So far Teqlo (or Yahoo! Pipes for that matter) hasn't convinced me that these tools will make everyone a programmer.

On the other hand, in the right hands Teqlo could well be the MS Access of Web 2.0 that puts Web-based application development into the hands of super users. In fact, a major benefit of the Teqlo approach could be, if they apply some kind of standards to 3rd party widget developers, is that it provides a safe Web 2.0 programming environment.


  1. Thanks. The Flash hiccup is something we will look into, there definitely should be a message about that. On another note, I'm actually in favor of stripping as much Flash out of the service as possible, it's a PITA to deal with from our end.

    As much as we say that anyone can use this to build apps, I really do think it's power user. Basically the profile could de like that of the Excel jockey who creates complex spreadsheets with macros and such.

    I'm sorry you had some issues with the registration process, this is definitely something we need to clean up and streamline.

  2. Thanks, Jeff. The follow up from Teqlo to my feedback has been excellent. I'm not too concerned about the teething problems, as I'm sure you'll work through, and this is just a beta afterall.

    However I guess while I can debate the ease of use from where I'm standing it is probably is a good thing that you are aiming for "everyone", because even if you don't reach that goal Teqlo will still end up being the best it can be.


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