What Exactly RIA is?
A rich Internet application (RIA) is one of the excellent web applications that created to offer the same features and functions that associated with desktop applications. Such type of applications runs inside the Web browser and usually doesn’t require any software installation on the client side to work.
However, there are some RIAs that only work with one or more particular browsers. Additionally, there are RIAs running their client portions within a special isolated area for security purpose. This area of client is better known as a sandbox.
The visibility and access to the file and operating system are limited by the sandbox to the application server on the other side of the connection. With this approach, client system can handle local activity, reformatting, calculations, etc. and thus, it minimizes the amount and frequency of the client-server traffic when it compares to the client-server implementations build around supposed thin clients.
Examples of RIA and its Features:
Flickr, Google Maps, Basecamp, Backpack, Gap, etc. are some of the outstanding rich Internet applications that mainly developed by using Flash or using Ajax techniques.
Some of the best features of such applications are:
- It allows users to directly interact with page elements like drag-and-drop, panning a map, inline editing
- Updates part of page instead of reloading
- Having more detailed information on the same page instead of on a new page
- Feedback, confirmation and error messages are given in one page
There are many challenges available with RIAs. Continue reading post and know what they are:
Challenge 1: Determine how much richness to Add
At the time of designing rich Internet application, ensure to decide how many features are there to add richness. There are many people, using the internet for many years, feeling comfortable with the existing page-based model and limited interactivity as it is awkward to seem to developers and designers.
Folks take a lot of time in adapting new approaches. It will be some time before conventions come out and users are feeling comfortable with the latest generation of application. It is recommended to enhance usability and relying on traditional models, where these things suits better to your users.
One can easily know about quantity of richness with Good user research and regular usability testing.
Challenge 2: Interactive Page Elements
Allowing users to interact directly with page elements like dragging and dropping graphic elements, editing text inline, panning a map are the best ways to add richness to your application.
It is must contact your users to decide what can be done with page elements and how one can use new controls. Users have an ability to recognize a control that exists and decides how to use it. Highlighting the top and shadowing the bottom allows you to recognize it as popping out of the screen and understand that it can be pushed by clicking easily.
The only way to utilize controls those imitator things people are familiar with from the the physical world is the slider on Fidelity Labs Mortgage Search.
Other than this, one can also change the element appearance or can show the controls with the mouse hovers over it. This can be used by Backpack for editing and deleting elements.
If you want to make sure your control has an excellent affordance, you have to:
- Thing about a demonstration and use a small in-page tutorial video that shows the interaction
- Make sure to control and interaction models are utilized throughout the interface and are close to other sites that your users visit. This will help your folks to learn what to do and create on past experience.
Challenge 3: Refreshing Part of the Page
One can enjoy maximum advantages in updating part rather than refreshing it or opening a new page. With this, you can easily develop faster applications, enhance user’s feedback and manage error in the most excellent ways.
We know that error management and feedback are difficult to enhance usability; however it is also tougher with the page-based model. One of the key-point for designing part is to ensure people see them.
One can have to use about visual attention and visual processing to make sure folks will look at the updated part:
The movement and high color contrast attracts visual attention and this can used to draw eye to updated part of page. At the time of taking action like our eyes remain fixed on that point for a short time and clicking a button then this release look somewhere else.
It is must to make changes quickly and as close as possible in order to drawn eye to an appropriate place. Avoid using high-contrast and create one update at a time.
Challenge 4: Breaking the Page Model
Most of the businesses are developing a mental model of how things work. There are many users developing a mental model of the Web based on pages that takes users to a new page with every click. If you want to go to the previous page, then click on the back button.
Furthermore, users can continue apply their page-based mental model to rich Internet application if they can have ability to recognize the uses of different model of RIA.
It is the most challenging part to think where we have to decide the use of individual pages and in-page richness. You must think regarding the entire interaction of your application and break it properly. Avoid adding everything into one “page”.
One more thing you have to take care is to express the difference between pages and in-page changes. One should have to recognize design of different visual navigation models, so it can be easily identified where they are getting a new page.
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