Public Programming in a Web World


Web browsers have created a truly platform-independent distributed environment. While the main focus for this environment has been pre-built applications, there is certainly an opportunity for systems designed to facilitate programming new applications. Systems tools, such as Java, are of course readily available, but not generally usable by public programmers, i.e., programmers without training in either object oriented or imperative programming. What we have not seen is the equivalent of a spreadsheet language, designed for public programmers and making it possible for these people to build applications that collect and manipulate data, both from within the Web and from without. We discuss the application of the visual programming language, Formulate, to building distributed applications via the Web environment. Formulate has certain inherent advantages for application to this environment. Principle among these are: (1) it was designed for public programmers and (2) its internal evaluation algorithm is well suited for adaptation to a non deterministic distributed environment using symbolic URLs.

Meeting Name

IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages, 1998


Computer Science

Keywords and Phrases

Formulate; Internet; Web Browsers; Web Environment; Web World; Distributed Applications; Internal Evaluation Algorithm; Non Deterministic Distributed Environment; Parallel Programming; Platform-Independent Distributed Environment; Public Programmers; Public Programming; Spreadsheet Language; Symbolic URLs; Systems Tools; Visual Languages; Visual Programming; Visual Programming Language

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 1998 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), All rights reserved.