It's hard to have a technical argument about this, because technical
consideration was never a big driver of web "technologies".

> Web programming would have also have started off with far greater ability
There is nothing wrong with the web having a limited scope of features.

> Web games, video-streaming applications, etc. on par with local applications
If they are on par, then why waste time with the web part?

> waiting years for even simple things to be standardized
They never actually did wait. What they implemented instead was always
horrible, and the incompatible standards created after the fact just
make it even worse.

> cookies and other privacy issues
> sandboxed
security and privacy in the web is hopeless. it plainly was never a real goal.

> beneficial to getting them into programming
popular things tend to drive people. doesn't say anything about the
technical or even educational qualities though.

> [...] friends in web development, they
> have expressed concerns about ease-of-use [...]
In this case they are liars. i know no single web developer who cares
about ease-of-use.

> system languages did not [...attract] them.
it's not for everyone to design systems. but they still managed (if i
am to believe you against their will) to waste their time doing
redundant system development, reinventing poorly what we already had,
which they couldn't find enough motivation to learn about.

"the plan 9 way" is often only used in the sense of being consistent.
This, elegance and cleanness is rarely seen in software, hardly
evaluated and only often demanded. But some principles are just
polished unix ideas and many others did exist before.

Plan 9 technically is just one small collection of more consistent
alternative building blocks, but the web has ignored, reinvented or
misunderstood most others, too.

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