Update: webOS Nation has just received the following statement from HP:
"We’re pleased with the traction Enyo has gained to date and plan to continue its development along with the open source community. The Open webOS project is on schedule and we remain committed to the roadmap announced in January.”
Key members of HP's Enyo team have reportedly just quit the company and left to set up shop over at Google. While initial rumors made it sound like it might be the entire team, webOS Nation's own sources indicate that this will move less than half of the team. It will, however, include Matt McNulty, the Senior Director of Frameworks and Tools.
As to what this means for webOS, well... what would it mean for Apple if the entire iOS application framework group jumped over to RIM, or if the entire Android dev team did a walk in over at Nokia?
In other words -- nothing good.
To be successful, operating systems need to be platforms, platforms need apps, apps need developers, developers need a framework to make apps, and that framework needs a strong, smart, passionate, engaged team behind it. If these rumors turn out to be true, in whole or even in part, webOS' struggle has just become that much more difficult. Again.
Now Enyo might well still be on track, and Enyo isn't the only way to develop for webOS, but it's the first party framework, and that makes it important.
Enyo 2 Beta 3 was released back on March 23 and while no doubt work has already been done on the next beta, and on the release version, it's hard to imagine a large scale defection wouldn't cause problems and delays.
As to what the Enyo team might do over at Google, well hooking back up with Matias Duarte, who designed the original Pre user interface for Palm and now does that same job for Android, is an easy guess. Google's a web services powerhouse, however, and Enyo is a cutting edge web technology framework, so the sky's very literally the limit.
Google's made a serious effort to improve not only the look but the user experience of everything from their web sites to their smartphone apps lately, and there's still Chrome and ChromeOS to consider. A team of skilled web framework developers could go a long way towards furthering all of those goals.
But Enyo and webOS are commited to being open source projects now, and they're bigger than any one person or group of people.
This is still a developing story, and we're tracking it in the webOS nations forums, so head on over there for more.
Source: The Verge
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