What is the purpose of GWT and how can one benefit from using it?
[Please use meaningfull titels so topics stand out and do not blend together. Important in Book promotions where you get 30-40 of the same title. Edited from GWT to GWT's purpose and benefits - Eric] [ June 25, 2007: Message edited by: Eric Pascarello ]
For me the benefit of GWT will be reduction in through life costs of an application. With GWT:
1) Write program once; it takes care of browser differences for me 2) Program is writen in a strongly typed language with substantial tool support
Whilst the first point can be addressed by other toolkits/frameworks, GWT is the only one the readily allows us to use powerful IDEs, and other tools such as Ant and Maven.
Add these together with the ability to develop unit tests with JUnit, and all of a sudden the development environment of web applications becomes very similar to that for other solid development environments.
And where there is a solid development environment there is the opportunity for smarter, quicker (=cheaper) maintenance.
If we are serious about making web applications work, then through life costs will have to factor into the equation, and the more manageable my development the easier it is to make investement judgements etc and therefore theoretically the better/more functional my web applications could become.
Although this might perhaps sound a little "management" focussed, these issues are all valid as a developer, as anything that makes my life easier I find good for me!