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Viewing Workday Through a Prism October 27, 2007

Posted by Tom Ortega II in Desktop, erp, Prism, RIA, workday.

Workday’s web application is currently built on top of Adobe’s Flex Framework. Flex let’s us build really cool widgets, which the application developers then turn into useful applications. Flex is great for developing. The current way to access the application is via a web browser, which is great for some reasons (zero-deployment, lightweight client, etc.) and not so great for other reasons (back/forward buttons, tabs in the browser, bookmarking, etc.)

Just because an application is deployed via a web browser doesn’t make it a “website”. Workday is a tool that our customers will use everyday of their work life. They should be able to access it like an other application they use at work by double clicking an icon on the desktop, single clicking an icon in the Quick Launch bar, or choosing an item from the Start menu (Yes, this is a Window’s users view).

Prism offers that functionality. It does it easily without much complication. The nice thing about Prism is that it’s an end-user technology. You don’t have to be a developer to convert your favorite web app into a desktop application. You just need to know a url and you’re done. Yes, it’s currently for Windows only and still pretty slim on features. However, for Workday, we build plenty of features ourselves into the application and it’s nice to see it shine on it’s own. If you’re interested in a bit of the Prism story, read Alex’s entry (he’s working on User Experience at Mozilla).

Below is a screenshot of my desktop. You can see the Workday app running in a tab inside Firefox. This is how I normally access the application. Moving forward though, I’ll be using the “Workday Dev” application instead. It’s the window with the red box outline around it (the red box is my doing to call out the window, Prism doen’t do that). You can also see 2 red circles highlighting the Desktop icon and Quick Launch icon.

If you use Workday and want it to access it like a desktop application, then go to the Mozilla Labs site and give Prism a twirl. Remember, it’s currently Windows only, but Mac and Linux support should be out soon.

Workday Desktop Application via Prism



1. Sans Browser » Blog Archive » First Flex Prism App - October 28, 2007

[…] I was waiting for this to happen. Didn’t think it would happen this soon though. The very first Prism app built with Flex. […]

2. Anuj - January 23, 2008

If you have used Prism for WorkDay, does that mean that the user now have to use only FireFox?

3. Tom Ortega II - January 27, 2008

No, not at all. My use of Prism was as that of a user, not as a developer. Meaning it was just a prism desktop shortcut to the app, not some sort of prism server deployment.

Our users are still free to use whichever browser they choose.

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