Modelling and Developing Distributed User Interfaces based on Distribution Graph

This paper introduces, motivates, defines, and exempli- fies the concept of distribution graph as a way for modelling and developing Distributed User Interfaces of interactive systems. A distribution graph consists of a state chart model enriched as fol- lows: states represent individual states of entities involved in the distribution as well as a collective representation of their syn- chronization; transitions are represented by event-condition- actions where the action part consists of a distribution script. A distribution script expresses the distribution behaviour based on distribution primitives. These primitives are basic operations that manipulate parts or wholes of user interface for distribution at run-time. These primitives are themselves implemented on top of an environment for distributed computing that is implemented for four major computing platforms (i.e., Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and Mobile Linux). Thanks to the capabilities provided by this environment, the user interfaces belonging to these distributed systems can be run indifferently on any of these computing platforms. This paper defines the new concepts intro- duced for this purpose, i.e., distribution primitive, distribution script, and distribution graph, and demonstrates how they can ef- fectively support distributed user interfaces.