User interfaces for low-bandwidth links, 3270 or 5250 on Unix/linux?
Posted on 2004-03-24
We have a large number of overseas sites connected over a WAN. These links range from 8kbps to 2Mbps, >75% of worldwide sites have bandwidth < 64kbps and there are often several users sharing the link during the day.
We have a strategy for thin-client (i.e. Browser) application development, but real-time operational systems developed with a Browser interface have proved to be slow, even after considerable tuning.
Successful applications running in this environment are mainframe based, with 5250 or 3270 based interfaces.
What I think we're after is a text based interface which uses very little bandwidth (such as 5250,3270 or telnet) and can be used on low cost unix/linux platform. Ideally linking to Java based functionality running on an application server (e.g. Weblogic). But the interface should not be command line driven. Rather it should support function keys, colours and possibly menus, dropdown lists etc.
Any ideas? What are other people doing in these harsh conditions?