Monday, July 16, 2012

JS frontends are like desktop apps

I noticed a trend recently, among developers, that we need to learn how to work with JS frontends. Obviously, it's great that people want to improve their skills, but is it really something new that we need to learn?

I suppose, that many of us at some point have been working on a desktop application. Was it a Java Swing app or a .NET Windows Forms or maybe Delphi app, doesn't matter that much.

What's important is that a JS frontend is very similar to a desktop applications.

Yes, they are not completely the same, we can do a few things that are easier in the browser than on the desktop app. Those differences don't influence the way we architecture the JS apps.

If you haven't had a chance to work on a desktop app then you're missing a lot, but still, it's much better to read about the desktop patterns, than to try the new shiny JS framework.


Jan Dudulski said...

"it's much better to read about the desktop patterns" - any recommendations? :)

James Higginbotham said...

I agree, we are moving back to the desktop application development approach with Javascript. From event-driven design to the MVC architecture, these applications are going to get more and more complex over time.

Given that much of the interaction is request-response, it feels more like client-server programming with the added constraint of a stateless server. This means that many patterns common to client-server app development will begin to trickle back into the more complex JS-heavy applications.