How Google's Cleanout Will Impact Developers

While Google's decision to close down Google Reader attracted most of our attention yesterday, Google is also shutting down some other developer tools. Here's what's happening to GUI Builder and the CalDAV API.

GUI Builder and five UiApp widgets are being deprecated although Google is assuring us that the Ui Service is safe. The GUI Builder will continue to be available to developers until September 9 but after that point you will not be able to create or manage GUI Builder components. Existing components will still function.

It's a little harsher for the five deprecated UiApp widgets. Hyperlink, InlineHyperlink, LayoutPanel, RichTextArea, and SuggestBox. These widgets will be also available until September 9, 2013 but after that they'll stop working.

Google's advice is to migrate user interfaces you've developed with the soon-to-be-trashed tools to the newer HTML Service.

If you have a spare 25 minutes up your sleeve, Google's 2013 State of the Script video, featured above, gives a run down of scripting support for Google Apps.

The CalDAV Challenge

One September 13 this year, Google will also shut down shut down the CalDAV calendar sync API for the majority of developers. As an alternative, Google is suggesting that developers shift their efforts over to the Google Calendar API. This API allows developers to integrate their applications with Google Calendar.

If there's a function in the Calendar API that you need but isn't there, then it is possible to apply to Google to get whitelisted access to the CalDAV API as the older API won't disappear completely.

Google's recent wave clean outs does leave us feeling a little tentative when it comes to using free services and APIs. While free stuff looks great, it's critical to remember that while Google can give, it can also take away.


Comments

    Strange that they are removing just those widgets, how hard would it be for them to leave them online indefinitely for existing apps?

    They have tons of deprecated APIs (some of them throw a javascript alert() to the end user to get the point across) and they just leave them running and dont' support them. I know this because a subcontractor used mapsv2 in a bit of software they wrote on our behalf recently and google started popping a warning halfway through UAT.... slightly embarassing since it had been officially deprecated over 2 years before we signed the contract.
    There must be some underlying architecture change that is driving this deprecation and they don't want to write the shim to keep them working.

      Google has an 18 month deprecation paradigm. The rule means deprecated code is marked as such and left in its current state in the wild for a minimum of 18 months before being removed. Aside from the 2 year part, your subcontractor might have used one of these libraries.

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