Last Updated: 9/22/2008
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Introduction to Page Mode
IntraWeb can be used in either Application Mode or Page Mode. The latter makes use of other technologies such as WebBroker or WebSnap, allowing the developer to combine existing knowledge with RAD technology. Although for most purposes, application mode is the way to go, Page Mode offers an interesting approach to Web development. To understand the difference between the two, let us see a scenario of where each one would fit in appropriately.
If developing an application (or web application) where state management is required and each step is interlinked with the previous, such as a contact relational management system, application mode would be most appropriate. This is because the whole application fits nicely into an automated scenario. For example, in normal CRM systems, a user logs in and is presented with a menu from where he/she can access different utilities such as contact management, customer invoices, etc. These are all tied to the same user, where Mr. Smith has certain contacts and Miss Jones has others. Session management plays an important role here and tracking the entire "session" is very important.
On the other hand, if there is a website where there are various independent sections, such as News, Stock quotes and Guest Book, none of these are really linked together. One person might want to see the news whereas another person would like to leave his/her signature. There is no "session tracking" as such, no need to remember if the user that requested news also requested stock quotes. This is where Page Mode fits in perfectly.
The primary difference when working with Page Mode as opposed to Application Mode, is that the former does not offer any kind of state or session management. All this needs to be taken care of by the developer using existing technology such as WebBroker (or WebSnap). Again, in most cases, session management is not required in these cases. It is very important to think through what exactly is the purpose of the web application before deciding on using Page Mode or Application Mode, i.e., is a full-blown application being developed or a dynamic site.
When developing dynamic sites with Page Mode, the technology behind it (as mentioned previously) has to be either WebBroker or WebSnap. IW allows adding to this backbone by providing "pages" to design interfaces. Think of Page Mode as pages where each page can be designed using RAD technology with drag-n-drop of visual IW controls. Therefore, the first step is to decide whether WebBroker or WebSnap is going to be used.
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