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Web Architecture Overview

When you write a small desktop application that opens up local files you have a single-tier application. That is to say that your application does not have to connect to any servers to obtain anything, it just opens up its local files and does its thing. These applications are also called monolithic. Once upon a time this was the only kind of application there was.

A browser that is reading static pages from a web server is a two-tier system, also known as a client/server system. In order for the browser to perform a useful function it must connect to a server and obtain something to work with. Other two-tier systems include desktop applications that connect to database servers, of which a great many were written in the 90s.

Finally, a browser connecting to a web server that then connects to a database server is a 3-tier system. These are all of the rage since the turn of the century.

Andromeda and The Web Application

The complete Andromeda framework is a 3-tier system, which means it is used to write web applications. The Andromeda framework is very different from most other frameworks because of its unique treatment of business rules.

Andromeda implements all business rules in the database server, relieving the programmer of the need to fashion application code in the web layer. Without this web layer code, Andromeda suddenly has few comparison points with other frameworks.

In fact, the Andromeda view of the web layer is that it is a "traffic cop" or "waiter". The "waiter" analogy is as follows. The web server (waiter), gets a request from the user and converts it to one or more SQL commands, just as a waiter brings orders to the kitchen. Then the web server converts the results to HTML and returns it to the browser, just as a waiter brings the food to the table. This is depicted here:

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