[Wolves] OT: Programming Languages

Stuart Langridge sil at kryogenix.org
Fri Mar 4 04:13:24 GMT 2005

Chris Ball wrote:
> I need to write a program that will work both via a web-browser, and as
> a stand-alone app. I was hoping to be able to do this without to much
> difference between the interfaces of both programs. Would Java (Applets)
> be the only real way foward with this, or are there other languages I
> could use?

I recommend thinking about this slightly differently. Instead of trying 
to write one program that works in two entirely differently 
environments, write three simpler programs: a server, a web client for 
that server, and a desktop client for that server. While the combination 
of the three will be a little more effort than just one, the resultant 
program will be a lot better; web applications are *not the same* as 
desktop applications, and they bring with them a whole new set of 
expectations as to user interface. Just to give one example, in a web 
browser, it's normal to click on an underlined word and expect something 
to happen; in a desktop application, it is emphatically not normal to do 
that. If you've got a clearly defined protocol between the server and 
the client then it's reasonably easy to implement the client and the 
server themselves, and this will make each application more relevant to 
the context in which it runs.


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