[self-interest] Re: remote GUI

Jack Schwartz jack at skila.com
Tue Feb 22 22:29:09 UTC 2000

Jecel -

I have been following the self-interest theads occasionally.  Your current
challenge, I take it, is to provide a lightweight remote GUI front end to
Self applications.  I would suggest that you contact Passport Corporation in
Paramus, NJ.  They have developed a Java Remote Presentation Protocol that
allows them to Web enable any application previously developed in their
proprietary language (Passport).  This protocol sends high-level commands
(something like: "create_main_window,<myWinId>,2,4,500,600") to a remote
Java windowing system (Swing).  The remote GUI has a significant amount of
intelligence allowing local events to be processed as automated GUI actions.
For example, clicking on a folder tab will automatically cause the
associated tab's content window to be brought to the front while the
tab-control automatically repaint and redirects focus to the first sensitive
object in the content window.  There is much more to tell about this
technology which was actually written up in some Hurwitz Publications and an
IDC Application Development Tools Bulletin entitled "Examining the Internet,
Enterprise Development, and IntRprise" [May 1997, IDC #13396 Vol: 1 Tab:
Vendor Strategies].  Check it out. I think you'll be surprised.

Jack H. Schwartz
Chief Technical Officer
VP, Software Development
Skila Inc.
1200 MacArthur Blvd.
Mahwah, NJ  07430
Jack at Skila.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Jecel Assumpcao Jr. [mailto:jecel at merlintec.com]
Sent: Tuesday, February 22, 2000 4:54 PM
To: self-interest at egroups.com
Subject: [self-interest] Re: remote GUI

Thanks to David N. Smith, Stefan Matthias Aust and John Hinsley for their
feedback on the remote GUI problem. I'll lump all my comments here to save

Berlin: it looks need, but I don't see that it will really be more
than X. They claim to be inspired by NeWS, which is a good thing, but I
see how they can send new functionality over to the server that wasn't there
before (from what I know about Corba). In any case, this is for the future
I need something for the next few weeks...

VNC at 128kbps: this obviously is a case of personal taste. But since I will
serving several clients over a single 33kbps link, it seems that this isn't
good choice for me.

X in Java (http://wiredx.net): since the students would have to download a
2 plug-in and do a lot of configuration before using this, it really isn't
option (though it would be the least work for me since it would talk to Self
it is now). In fact, it is very likely that their PCs won't have enough
resources in any case. Plus there is the 33kbps limitation I mentioned

I guess I will have to make the clients way more intelligent so I can use a
higher level protocol. Since the students will have to download something in
any case, something in Squeak might be the right choice for this project.

As long as I am lumping different stuff together, I might as well comment
Stefan's observation here:

> Compared with Self on Squeak, the Java version performs much better
> -especially with HotSpot.  It's still not comparable with the real Self
> I think, but the advantage is that I can easily script existing Java code.
> did a very small example with Swing.   And I've to say that a lot of
> Smalltalkers (and Self fan) here and on the Squeak list are biased. Java
> better than you think :-)

The problem is that there are several different Javas out there. When I
write a
program in Java, I limit myself to what will work on the Java included in
old Netscape or Internet Explorer that the user might be using.  So that
my impression of the language. Of course I can get much better results by
requiring that the user download Java 2 (like the wiredX people do) and that
they only use IE on Win98 or later, but then what is the point?

-- Jecel

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