Relational Blocks: A Visual Dataflow Language for Relational Web-Applications (original title: WebRB: a Language and Runtime For Multi-Page Relational Web-Applications)

WebRB consists of a visual programming language and a runtime for that language which enable developers to create complete relational web-applications without exiting the declarative relational domain. No imperative or non-visual code is needed. The WebRB development tools include a visual editor and application validator. WebRB applications are executed as standard multi-page web-applications that run in a standard web-browser.

The Model, View, and Controller portions of a WebRB application all have a visual representation, and all use a common API, which is based on relational algebra. Unlike many visual programming languages, WebRB is targeted at general-purpose applications that use relational databases and transactions, and in which non-trivial relationships exists between the View and Model.

Since WebRB is declarative, it enhances developer productivity by making the system responsible for the details of the implementation, rather than the developer. Also, the View is developed in the visual domain, which isthe most natural approach. The Model and Controller are also developed in the visual domain, so that the developer does not need to operate in multiple domains simultaneously. We show a comparison between a WebRB application and a typical PHP implementation of the same application. Index Terms—web relational blocks, visual programming languages, relational application environments, execution of visual programs

By: Avraham Leff; James T. Rayfield

Published in: Proceedings of IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing (VL/HCC 2007), (, IEEE. , p.205-8 in 2007

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