RIA 2010 – next-generation user experience
History: 1995-2000 experimentation. Ways to make user experience less flat. ActiveX, java, etc. Working to overcome page-based apps, minimal controls, server trips. Not what we want to give the user
History 2000-2004: SOAP / web services, XML, flash, flex 1.0, ... etc. Set up the current field. Pet market: first example of complex rich interface.
2005-2008: revolution. Adobe buys Macromedia. SOA adoption. Ajax matures. Flex & Air. Users demanding good experiences. UI studies show better user performance with rich apps
2009-2011: near future. Web apps making use of GPU power. Blurring of boundary between web and desktop (e.g. Air). Cloud and remote file storage becoming ubiquitous. Mobile gets real - hard today because of plurality of platforms. Semantic data - is W3C semantic web vision "real" [ijd - not clear what real means in this context]. Multi-channel (tv, etc).
User experience design. Back-end capabilities have grown, now not a blocker for front-end capabilities. Users experiencing new consumer UI's (gmail, twitter, ...). Expect same experience at work.
Do we still need to call them "rich" UI's? No-one does just html anymore. Rich = not page-based, responsive, contextual, real-time, motion-capable. Why motion? Helps users to understand the state changes that are occuring.
Lots of technologies around (platforms, langs, libs) around. What else will have an impact? SOA - business logic exposed as services. Other application enabling services coming: image/video, AI/decision making, recommendation, audio, etc. Lots of startups providing their offerings as service endpoints.
Web apps getting more desktop-like. Desktop apps getting web connected (desktop widgets).
other trends: adding z-dimension to UI's. Not second-life, just using depth - info further away is less important. Cloud. Unbounded pages (page is larger than viewport).
Over the horizon: new forms of input. Ambient data to/from portable devices. Broadband everywhere. Connected devices. Not just about technology any more.
Focus should be user not technology. What does the user really need?
Demo financial reporting. Used flex. Ajax couldn't handle the data volume. Nice use of 3d browsing. Demo example of replacing Siebel ERP interface with Ajax.
Advocacy: use hybrid-teams with multi-skilled individuals. Encourage people who want to transition between skillsets (programmers to designers, software architect to info architect, designers to programmers, etc).
merapiproject.net - AIR to Java integration