Yahoo Launches New Cross-Platform App Development Framework Mojito


Yahoo today released Mojito, an HTML5/CSS3/JavaScript/Node.js framework for building cross-platform applications. Mojito is part of the Cocktail initiative Yahoo announced a few months ago. The other piece of Cocktail is Manhattan, a cloud hosting platform for Mojito apps.

Here’s how Yahoo explained Mojito when it was first announced:

Mojito is a JavaScript web application framework that makes “your stuff run on both sides”, browser-side and server-side. With Mojito, developers will no longer have to write different code for the server backend and browser frontend. Not only that, but going forward there should be no more warnings on web pages reading “JavaScript enabled is required”, since whenever JavaScript is not enabled in the browser, Mojito-based applications will still run on the server side, all using a single code base.

According to the quick tour, Mojito is a Node.js module that leverages other modules such as the popular Express framework for building servers.

It’s an awkward time for a release. A few weeks ago Yahoo hit Facebook with a patent infringement suit. That’s made Yahoo particularly unpopular in the developer community, who don’t often take kindly to software patents – even patents they’ve filed themselves. Case in point: Wired contributor and former Yahoo developer Andy Baio wrote that he was pressured into filing patents for technology he developed for Upcoming, an events sharing app acquired by Yahoo. Baio wrote that the patents were supposed to be purely defensive. Meanwhile, Yahoo’s expected round of layoffs isn’t helping the company’s image.

All that said, Mojito looks like a truly cool framework that should be judged on its own merits, not on the basis of Yahoo’s recent actions. However, it’s hard to think that the Manhattan service will gather much steam in the current environment.

Photo by soyculto