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JDA: A Step Towards Large-Scale Reuse on the Web

JDA: A Step Towards Large-Scale Reuse on the Web

Thursday, Oct 26, from 15:30 to 17:00

The Web is maturing as a rich application development platform, and efforts are being made to provide richer and more dynamic interactions using JavaScript. JavaScript-based Web applications such as Google Maps have gained extra attention for the fact that they can be easily included in HTML for reuse. However, various technical hurdles have made it difficult for JavaScript reuse to extend beyond its current state. Furthermore, JavaScript reuse is still out of reach for a large portion of the Web user base not versed in the use of programming languages. In this paper, we dive deeper into our previous work on the JavaScript Dataflow Architecture (JDA) intended for Web client applications written using HTML and JavaScript. We discuss the ways in which the architecture addresses many of the hurdles that modern Web client applications face in the realm of large-scale reuse and remixing. JDA aims to provide an ecosystem comprised of black box components operating within a JavaScript-based asynchronous message-passing environment. The environment allows one to use simple HTML to assemble Web applications from JavaScript black boxes scattered around the World Wide Web. No programming skill is required in their assembly, and no plug-ins or applets are required for their execution. Furthermore, the architecture extends the black box metaphor beyond the boundaries of JavaScript and allows multiple JavaScript components contained within a single HTML file to be reused as a whole. A detailed account of an early prototype implementation is discussed, but much research is needed for its improvement. JDA suggests that large-scale reuse and arbitrary remixing of Web applications can be realized using existing technologies.

Seung Chan Lim, MAYA Design Inc.
Peter Lucas, MAYA Design Inc.

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