Home > Articles > Software Development & Management > Management: Lifecycle, Project, Team

  • Print
  • + Share This
Like this article? We recommend

8: Design Web-Centric Applications and Reusable Components

As in the case of object-oriented programming, not all software architectures are web-centric. With the explosion of the public Internet, corporate intranets, and extranets, however, web-centric software is becoming more universal. This changes not only the way you design software, but also some of the very basic infrastructure requirements. Here are some of the infrastructure components needed for a typical web-centric application:

  • Database server. A web-centric application typically accesses one or more corporate databases. Unlike a two-tiered client/server application, however, a web-centric application is less likely to access the database directly. More commonly, a web-centric application accesses some sort of middle-tier application server containing the business rules of the application. The middle-tier application then communicates with the database server on behalf of the web-centric client. Such a multi-tiered approach offers many advantages, including greater application scalability, security, and flexibility.

  • Application servers. In a web-centric architecture, application servers implement the business logic of the application. In many cases, this is programmed using the Java language. From a Java program, the Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) API is most often used to connect back to the central database. Specialized application servers may offer services such as DBMS data caching or transactions. A single business function is often broken down into components that execute across many applications servers.

  • Web servers. Web servers are used to store and distribute both Java applications and web pages containing text and graphics. Many advanced applications generate web pages dynamically to provide a customized look and feel.

  • Caching proxy servers. These servers, while not explicitly part of the application, are typically located strategically across the network to cut down on network bandwidth and provide faster access times to web-based data and applications.

  • Reverse proxy server. A reverse proxy server is typically used to provide remote users secure access over the Internet back to their corporate intranet.

  • Web clients. Until recently, a web client meant either Netscape's Communicator or Navigator browser or Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser. Today, a web client could be one of these browsers, or any of the following:

    • HTML-rendering Java Bean component in your application

    • Applet viewer built into a Java Development Kit (JDK)

    • Java application

    • Collection of functions built directly into the operating system

One of the main advantages of web-centric design is that it starts taking IT out of the business of supporting heavyweight clients. In fact, most new operating systems ship with one or more bundled web browsers, so no additional client installation is required for a web-centric application. Even if you're deploying to older desktops without a bundled web browser, the popular browsers are available for free and easily installed. If a web-centric application is designed correctly, the end user client really doesn't matter, as long as an HTML-rendering component and Java Virtual Machine (JVM) are present.

If there is any disservice that the web has brought to software development, it's that inexperienced managers may believe that the web has trivialized web-centric software development. True, almost any word processor today can spit out HTML code, and dozens of development tools promise point-and-click generation of Java code, while the web makes software distribution a non-issue. All of this has allowed web-savvy organizations to develop new applications on "Internet time," several times faster than using traditional client/server environments. But it hasn't trivialized software development. From requirements definition through production acceptance, the same disciplines that apply to client/server development hold true for web-centric development.

While embracing web-centric design doesn't necessarily require using reusable components, it certainly is a good place to start. More development organizations every day are investing in the design and development of reusable components. Several of the popular component frameworks have fostered the popularity of reusable components. Let's consider some of the advantages of building reusable components:

  • It can take longer and be more expensive to design and implement a given function as a reusable component than as a non-reusable one. The savings only come when the component is reused. Especially with web-centric design, however, developers increasingly reuse well-designed components. This reuse is facilitated by component standards such as Java Beans components integration. The cost tradeoff, therefore, is to compare the overhead of reusable design with the average number of times a component can be reused. A reusable component, on average, might cost from 10–25% more to develop. Few development managers today could justify a 25% cost and schedule overrun just to save the next project money. However, properly implemented, reusable components can begin saving project money today.

  • If you invest in the design of reusable components and an accompanying framework, you will undoubtedly find components you can reuse from elsewhere in place of some of the code you would otherwise develop.

  • It's likely that components developed for one project can be reused elsewhere in the organization on other projects.

  • You can buy and sell components (either externally or by exchanging with other development groups inside your company).

  • Well-built components are much easier to swap out and upgrade.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020