Java, in combination with Web browsers' abilities to load and execute untrusted Java applets in a secure fashion, has made computing over the Web a possibility. Now the challenge is to fully utilize this potential, given the limitations imposed by browsers. This paper presents KnittingFactory, an infrastructure to facilitate Web-based computing, which addresses this challenge. It supports building distributed applications, specifically those consisting of Java applets executing in browsers. It is composed of: (i) a distributed name service to assist users in locating other participants of a distributed computation via standard browsers; (ii) an embedded class server to eliminate the need for external HTTP servers for serving applet code; and (iii) a technique for direct applet-to-applet communication. In this paper, we describe the design and implementation of KnittingFactory and demonstrate its benefits by applying it to three distinct areas of Web-based computing. First, we apply our distributed name service to a client/server architecture to enable RMI clients to locate servers on unknown hosts. Second, we use the embedded class server to extend the capability of Charlotte, a parallel computing environment Finally, we build a collaborative application using our direct applet-to-applet communication technique which does not require a forwarding agent.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Concurrency Practice and Experience|
|State||Published - 1998|
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