Planning a traditional Notes® and Web application

If you are planning an application that users will access via a Notes® client or via a Web browser, you will need to do some design work to tailor your application for each platform. For example, a navigation structure that is suited for a Notes® client application may not be the best choice for a Web application. When you design an application for both Notes® and Web, about 85% of your design will be suitable for both clients, and the remaining 15% will require some modification. Here are some issues to consider when planning an application for Notes® and Web users:

Understanding the differences

The division of labor in a Notes® application -- what the Domino® server does and what the Notes® client does -- is very different from the architecture of a browser-based application. This is because the capabilities of a Notes® client are very different from a Web browser, and the protocols the browser and server use to communicate are very different as well.

Domino® uses Sun Microsystems Java and JavaScript to translate Notes® client functionality to the browser with fuller fidelity, so that Web users can interact with action bars, rich text, views, and other Notes® features in familiar ways. But there is no Web functionality equivalent to the Notes® Document Object Model (DOM) and Remote Procedure Call (RPC) protocol. A Notes® client can send instructions to the server to perform a task and receive back results that are refreshed within the current open form or document. This kind of interaction is nonexistent between a browser and server. All a browser can do is send a request to a server, and all a server can do is send a complete page to a browser.

Limitations of the Web browser and the browser/server architecture are the basis for most of the problems you must solve as you consider how to serve one application to Notes® client and Web browser users.