A Views-Based Design Framework for Web Applications
Web application design is a broad term that refers to any aspect of designing a Web application, including designing Web interfaces to data. There are a number of commercial software tools available that employ various techniques for implementing Web access to databases. However, these techniques apply only to portions of Web application implementation and lack a common design paradigm. We believe that defining an approach to designing and implementing Web applications based on views, frameworks, and patterns allows us to extend an object-oriented design representation and develop reusable and extensible design solutions for a class of Web applications in which the concerns are separated. The major contribution of this thesis is the development of a new approach to designing Web applications, producing the following visible contributions: a model for Web applications based upon a separation of concerns using views; a framework for system elements so that object-oriented design patterns can be used to build the application; a reusable design approach so that many Web applications can be built around the same framework; a coherent and organized framework representation using extended UML; and an implementation approach that can be implemented on a number of different platforms using a range of software and tools. In support of this solution, this thesis shows the design and implementation of a proof-of-concept Web application using this design technique. We believe that the approach to Web application design promoted in this thesis has proven itself useful in a practical way for the case studies discussed herein and points the way to a wider range of design and implementation possibilities.