> From: Walden H. Leverich
> Don't need to. You're still thinking in the program 1 -> program 2 ->
> program 3 mode. If you're in program 3 maybe the app allows you to go to
> program 2 but you can't get straight to program 1 without going through
> program 2. This model simply doesn't hold water in the web world. Any
> attempts to make a web browsers deal with this model results in a, IMHO,
> klunky web interface.

It depends on what your goal is.  If your goal is to quickly get existing
applications onto the web without requiring rewrites of your logic or
retraining of your users, then the server/client paradigm (where the server
controls the sequence of panels) works just fine.  This is perfectly
acceptable for most heads-down data entry applications, and frankly for most
applications in general.  It's not fancy, but it works just fine.

> You need to break the app into business logic components. If broken
> successfully, these can be called in any logical order and the
> web user can
> jump from/to any screen.

This is of course the best solution.  However, you have to balance your
needs with your wants.  Depending on the original code in the programs, it
may be very difficult to separate the programs into logical modules.  You
can end up spending a large percentage of your development budget on simply
retesting business logic that used to work, whereas with a server/client
approach, your programs are already tested, and you're simply changing the
user interface.

No one size fits all, of course.  It depends on your business goals.  My
product converts your programs with a single command that takes just a few
seconds to run.  It won't break your programs apart into business logic
servers, but you can put the money you save on program rewrites and
retesting into making a very acceptable web application.  Then you can
concentrate on rewriting the applications that really need to be rewritten,
without having to waste time on programs that don't need to be rewritten.
For example, do you really need a client/server version of your chart of
accounts master maintenance?  Probably not.  But if you want to reduce your
interactive costs, a cheap, easy way of interfacing that program to a
browser might be just the ticket.

Joe Pluta

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