W3C logo Ubiquitous Web Applications
Statements of interest, summaries and links to full text

As submitted to the W3C workshop on declarative models of distributed web applications, 5-6 June 2007, Dublin, Ireland.

Collage: A Declarative Programming Model for Compositional Development and Evolution of Cross-Organizational Applications by Bruce Lucas and Charlie Wiecha, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
Establishment of directions for new standards work around end-to-end declarative languages for web applications.
An end to end declarative modeling framework based upon RDF and the MVC design pattern. Collage builds upon and generalizes many of the concepts familiar from XForms. Collage supports application composition and device adaptation.
Declarative Models for Ubiquitous Web Applications Morfeo-MyMobileWeb — Position Paper by José Manuel Cantera Fonseca, Ignacio Marín Prendes, Javier Soriano, and Juan J. Hierro
W3C global strategy in the area of Ubiquitous Web Applications
Although, Web Applications built on HTML are nowdays a reality, developers are demanding more powerful abstraction mechanisms, that hide all the complexity involved in the creation of a rich user interface in HTML. Ajax based toolkits have sprung up as a response, but only provide a partial solution. A new declarative language is proposed (IDEAL) combining a device independent UI with data binding via expressions, layout, styling, and formatting.
Analyses of usability considerations for providing secure access to device capabilities and personal/confidential information by Joshue O Connor, CFIT

NCBI CFIT is interested in the workshop as we are actively involved in Ireland as advocates for increased user involvement in ICT development cycles and promoting the adoption of accessible web development practices in order to help create a more inclusive society. This includes the user testing of Web Applications and User interfaces as well as assessing their overall accessibility.

NCBI CFIT wish to ensure that the practice of user testing gains a higher level of visibility and significance within ICT development cycles. We see user testing as an important part of the process of successfully developing new modalities for user interaction.

We wish to find areas for collaboration and co-operation, specifically regarding future research and methods of incorporating user testing in development cycles, with others involved in the workshop.

In this position paper we examine what user testing is, why it is important and how it can help, if included in the design of secure user interface elements, to ensure that people with disabilities do not have their user experience compromised by the addition of enhanced security features. The paper also raises the issue of the need for developers to accomodate the diverse requirements of users of assistive technology when developing security features in web applications so that these enhancements can be truly inclusive.
Compositional Business-Task Organization by Koiti Hasida, Noriaki Izumi and Akira Mori, ITRI, AIST
A W3C-recommendation-track activity for declarative models of semantic web services.
CBTO is a declarative framework for designing, coordinating and operating semantic Web services in terms of constraints.
Migrating Web Applications through Declarative Models by Fabio Paternò, HIIS Laboratory, ISTI
Web applications in ubiquitous environments
Describes an approach where the UI is adapted to a given device based upon a modality independent abstract description of the UI and a logical description of the activities and objects that need to be manipulated. The user can move from one device to another thanks to a migration service. An intermediate specification supports transformations from the abstract description to a concrete description for a given device. The approach has been applied to generating XHTML, VoiceXML, X+V and Java for Digital TV.
Declarative techniques in Distributed Media Center system by Jari Kleimola and Petri Vuorimaa, Helsinki University of Technology
Even a linked list of techniques that can be used when building DWA systems would be a good starting point, so it would be easy to compare different solutions and to avoid re-inventing the wheel. It would be even more exciting to find a way to describe/orchestrate the entire model.
A hub based approach for remote user interfaces using REX to couple the concrete UI with the abstract UI where the two are on different devices. Adaptation is supported via XSLT and XProc. The application domain is for home networks and the approach is designed to work across firewalls using RESTful HTTP. The hub advertises itself using Zeroconf for easy installation in home networks.
Using declarative models for multi-device smart space environments by Sailesh Sathish, Nokia Research
My interest are context models, declarative languages for adaptive application and migratory interfaces What I'd like to see out of the workshop related to these are thoughts on extension and integration of existing activities to support adaptive applications as well as issues that may have been overlooked. I'd also like to hear opinions on web and smart space related security issues.
Home environments pose important challenges for multi-user multi-device applications, for instance, operating over a mix of network and communication technologies, and dynamic awareness of the physical environment. An example is the use of a mobile device to browse music on a remote web site and to play it on a separate HiFi system, with the means to adjust the HiFi's volume level from the mobile device. The paper describes the potential role of DCCI, SCXML and REX in enabling such applications.
User preferences of web (services) for distributed web applications by Kangchan Lee and Seungyun Lee, ETRI
Device Coordination and Eventing mechanism
Web services can be integrated into virtually any computing device and used as a basis for discovery and interoperation with other devices and remote services. Web Services Choreography standards are unsuited for use in mobile environments where the connectivity may be lost as the device moves into a no coverage area. Standards are needed to describe interaction logic and how this is controlled by user preferences.
A next generation delivery context interface by Keith Waters and Keith Rosenblatt, France Telecom
Describes a thin client implementation of the Delivery Context Client Interfaces (DCCI) as a means for dynamically accessing device capabilities to enable the application to adapt to match changing conditions. For thin clients, adaption is done in the server rather than in the client as is possible for browser based UIs.
Position Paper by Lasse Pajunen, Nokia Research
A shared vision on future of declarative methods to model web applications
Focuses on role of Web Services as a means for browsers to provide services. Process modeling as a way to design services should be encouraged. Here, user interface extensions on top of WS-BPEL could be standardized. Full Web standards must be further developed in order to offer more scalability options for client-side optimization based upon the context.
Connecting XForms to Databases by Oskari Koskimies, Mikko Honkala, Nokia Research Center and Markku Laine, Helsinki University of Technology
Web application authoring is complicated by the need to master many programming languages and paradigms, e.g. HTML, CSS, and JavaScript on the client, and PHP, Java or Ruby on the server with database access via direct SQL or database to object mappings. Business logic is divided between client and server, and there are problems with offline usage and with multi-user support involving synchronization and transactions. The paper describes an end-to-end solution based upon XForms with the means to remotely handle queries using XPath or XQuery.
Position Paper by Rhys Lewis, Volantis Systems
Content adaptation has been very successful as a technique for allowing specially authored web pages to be accessed on a huge variety of different devices. However, to date the focus of the approach has been on ensuring that pages can be rendered appropriately so that they are usable. With increasing capabilities in devices comes increasing interest in the ability not only to render pages, but to enable novel, distributed applications. The challenge is to enable application adaptation. Solutions are starting to emerge, for instance, the role of XBL as a means to bind logical components that act as controls with separately defined behavior and presentation. Another promising direction is the use of SCXML to represent behavior in terms of event driven state models and as an alternative to procedural code.
Position Paper by Rotan Hanrahan, Mobile Aware
Interested in making it easier for people to create applications. Want to see evidence that declarative methods will support this goal, rather than add further levels of complexity.
Web application authoring today is increasingly complex and there is a corresponding need for higher levels of abstraction. MobileAware believes that conditional markup will evolve into high-level semantically rich compositions together with processes that map intentions within a contextual framework to various delivery modalities and content structures. The shift from programmatic towards declarative approaches will re-enfranchise application authors.
Statement of Interest by Steven Pemberton, W3C
I built a completely declarative system in the late 1980's, and XForms is a continuation.
The bulk of the cost of developing applications is incurred in finding and fixing bugs. The number of bugs rises super linearly with the code size, and this is where declarative techniques can make a big impact through an order of magnitude reduction in code size leading to a dramatic reduction in the cost of the application. Declarative applications offer a major opportunity for reducing the costs of developing applications by leaving the administrative aspects of the programming task to the computer, and unburdening the programmer to focus on fulfilling the application goals.
Statement of Interest by Joerg Heuer, Siemens

Within Siemens the adoption of web technologies for control purposes have increased in the recent years. Web technologies are used in quite different domains such as control in automation, user interactions via displays/controles in vehicles or user interfaces of set top boxes (STBs). Originally the motivation to use web technologies was often the ease of portability to different devices and the flexibility in the design of the application. To achieve the desired functionality for the implementation it became common practice to use scripting extensively. However this approach actually contradicted the desired portability to different devices and also increases the complexity of content creation in general. Even worse the scripting approach sometimes caused instability and unpredicted behaviour of the application due to run time effects.

In the meantime also the requirements on the supported applications have evolved. For instance in automation the diversity of displays and input devices has increased. In the automotive domain the connectivity to mobile devices has become important. Those mobile devices nowadays host a significant number of applications and services interacting with fixed installed devices. And also the STBs have to provide services which have to scale from usage on the STB as a high end device to mobile devices at the low end.

This evolution shows that the requirements on adaptability, UI navigation concepts, distribution of the application and multi-modality has become more crucial. To our understanding existing declarative languages should be examined to what extend they fulfil the requirements and the desired functionality. In adition the extensive use of scripting is problematic with respect to adaptability and robustness. It has to be evaluated to what extend declarative languages can reduce and/or replace usage of scripting.

Statement of Interest by Rachel Yager, citigroup
My interest is in the following topic: Layered architectures for describing applications that avoid the need for direct authoring of server-side scripts for data driven web pages, and which leverage the potential for XML and RDF Triples for storing and manipulating data (e.g. through the use of XSLT, XQuery and SPARQL).
Statement of Interest by Charles McCathieNevile, Opera

We think that it is important to take an evolutionary approach that brings together the vast amount of content, which represents a huge investment, and which is already available today on a growing range of platforms and platform types.

There are a number of W3C technologies that we have deployed across over a hundred million devices, which can be used now to solve problems in a way that simplifies the task of developng new browsers or content. At the same time, it is of course important to recognise that web applications require functionality that is not always available in traditional browsers, and we need to look at the best-of-breed in emerging technology to determine how best to fit it into the web rather than trying to create some kind of radically new successor web.

Trusted Mobile Browsers by Anil Saldana, Red Hat/JBoss
Description of Secure Remote Pasword protocol, which involves provides a means for authenticating to a remote site using a password and a protocol that is resistant to eaves droppers and man in the middle attacks. The approach involves the user in entering a password and can be built into the client.
Statement of Interest by Doug Schepers
I'd like to see a pragmatic declarative state-sensitive language that can be implemented widely.

Last revised by $Author: dsr $ on $Date: 2007/06/01 15:50:43 $