RIA: The Technologies

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It's the era of Rich Internet Applications and RIA developers are living up to this buzz by rolling out applications that enhance the usability and flexibility of the Internet. The greatest advantage that RIA development brings to a website is the fact that a user does not need to download any software for using it as they can be accessed directly through the web browser. RIAs also function like conventional desktop applications providing a robust experience to the user. They are dominating territories like online gaming and other audio-visual applications.

Technologies for RIA Development

• Adobe Flex – The most popular technology for RIA development it allows enable developers to write apps on the Flash platform. Powered by MXML the user interface language and ActionScript developers can create highly interactive webpages. It comes with a software development kit that can help in adding audio-visual elements, interactive buttons, charts, etc. It does not require a server and uses an Eclipse plugin as the IDE. A Flash Player is enough to run the application on a website.

• Ajax- Its popularity stands next to Flex and Flash and is based on an implementation of JavaScript, XML and other technologies that help websites deliver interactive web applications. It has universal acceptability and is supported by most browsers and operating systems. It minimizes the bandwidth usage of the Internet. It allows validation of real time form and server side code and auto completion of various fields in the form.

• Microsoft Silverlight – Another amazing technology from the Microsoft stable Silverlight's run-time environment is that it is available as a plug-in for most web browsers. It helps in integrating multimedia, graphics, animations and interactivity into a single runtime environment. Silverlight offers cross-domain support for applications. Silverlight focuses on streaming media and gives developers support for CLI languages ​​and development.

• OpenLaszlo – It is an open source platform which consist of the LZX programming language and the OpenLaszlo Server. LZX is an XML and JavaScript description language similar in spirit to XUL, MXML, and XAML. It helps in the development of zero-install web applications with the user interface capabilities of desktop client software.

• JavaFX – The platform provides a powerful Java-based UI platform capable of handling large-scale data-driven business applications. JavaFX includes a set of plug-ins for Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator that enable advanced graphics to be integrated directly into the applications. It comes in two versions JavaFX Script and JavaFX Mobile.

RIA development is still a virgin territory on the Internet and needs a lot of expertise on the part of the developers. The best way to go about your custom development project is to outsource it to an offshore development center that specializes in the job. Make sure you do a background research on the firm where you want your application developed as not all offshore development firms have the expertise to handle the job.

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