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Re: web-based application or desktop application?

by b10m (Vicar)
on Dec 04, 2003 at 14:45 UTC ( #312201=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to web-based application or desktop application?

Well, since noone wants to suggests some negative sides of webbased apps, I'll do it ;)

"Hot" keys
With regular apps, you can always use certain keystrokes to reach some goal, and thus, speeding up the use of the app tremendously. I don't see how you could build that into a website
No piping
Ain't it lovely to pipe certain output to the next app? Even for the sake of "app | mail -s "Here's your output of app" user@domain".
Back button can annoy ...
Since the look and feel is like every other website the users know, you have to take care of the fact that they'll use the back button and don't read warnings about "Are you sure", "POST", "again" ;)

I'm sure there are more disadvantages ... so bring it on! :)

--
B10m


Comment on Re: web-based application or desktop application?
Re: Re: web-based application or desktop application?
by hardburn (Abbot) on Dec 04, 2003 at 15:26 UTC

    With regular apps, you can always use certain keystrokes to reach some goal, and thus, speeding up the use of the app tremendously. I don't see how you could build that into a website

    Web apps tend to be simple enough that hot keys usually don't make sense. If your web app isn't simple, it probably shouldn't be a web app (HTML doesn't handle complexity well).

    Ain't it lovely to pipe certain output to the next app?

    Piping is just a means for programs to share data with each other. In a web app, the sharing is usually done by an RDBMS. If you really want to use a pipe, use wget or lynx -source to get the page printed to STDOUT. Certainly, this is far more likely to work than attempting to pipe a traditional GUI program.

    Back button can annoy ...

    Yup, that's a problem.

    ----
    I wanted to explore how Perl's closures can be manipulated, and ended up creating an object system by accident.
    -- Schemer

    : () { :|:& };:

    Note: All code is untested, unless otherwise stated

      Web apps tend to be simple enough that hot keys usually don't make sense. If your web app isn't simple, it probably shouldn't be a web app (HTML doesn't handle complexity well).

      Umm, I use hot keys so much that web interfaces irritate me because I actually have to move my hand to the mouse. Trying to use keyboard navigation for web pages is painful at best. It doesn't matter how simple your web pages are, the keyboard is just not a good tool for web page manipulation, and when I'm working I prefer not having to use the mouse.

      Don't get me wrong I surf the web as much as the next person, I just usually don't consider it work per say :) I use a mouse a lot too, I just prefer not to when I am typing a lot or "in the zone" as it were :)

      So in a sense I agree with you, web apps are not always the best tool for complex applications :)


      "Nothing is sure but death and taxes" I say combine the two and its death to all taxes!

        Trying to use keyboard navigation for web pages is painful at best.

        I generally prefer my mouse's wheel for scrolling anyway, and movements honed by years of FPS and RTS gaming make me pretty quick with the mouse pointer :)

        When filling in forms, most text boxes don't pose a problem, as the default tabbing order is usually correct. HTML does provide a way for the developer to specify a tab order, but I don't think it's used too often. Pull-down boxes may or may not pose a keyboarding problem--for common ones, like a place to fill in what state you live in, I can generally get there without a problem (I live in Wisconsin, which in alphabetical order is the second US state that starts with 'W', so pressing 'w' twice gets me there). I find checkboxes and radios are the biggest keyboarding issue.

        ----
        I wanted to explore how Perl's closures can be manipulated, and ended up creating an object system by accident.
        -- Schemer

        : () { :|:& };:

        Note: All code is untested, unless otherwise stated

Re: Re: web-based application or desktop application?
by gsiems (Chaplain) on Dec 04, 2003 at 18:59 UTC

    FWIW, you can do hot keys after a fashion by using the HTML accesskey attribute.

    example:

    <p><a accesskey="p" ref="http://www.perlmonks.org">Perl monks</a></p>

    How well this works depends on how well it is implemented in the browser, but with mozilla at least I can hit ALT+p to *click* the link. IIRC this doesn't work as nicely using IE.

    --greg
      Mozilla has one very nice feature in that if you see a link you want, say 'free beer', if you start to type f-r-e-e it will then jump to the links on the page that match what your typing. Pressing return follows the link.

      --tidiness is the memory loss of environmental mnemonics

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