Nebula Research and Development

Nebula Definitions and Information


Internet: Worldwide network which can be accessed from anyone, anywhere. An internet application is available to the widest audience.

Intranet: Local Area Network (LAN) or Wide Area Network (WAN) which is only accessible to authorized personnel, usually only employees and close affiliates of an organization. Access may be by login/password, but being on an internal network this isn't always required.

Extranet: Network usually accessible through normal internet connections, but requiring login/password access. Extranets are for applications where a trusted vendor/client (B2C) or business to business (B2B) relationship exists.

HTTPS and SSL: Protocols to insure secure transport of data such as credit card information, passwords, sensitive numbers such as price, cost, income, etc.

What are the Browser options?

  • HTML and JavaScript are implemented in all web browsers, and are the best client-side languages for the average internet user.
  • VBScript and ActiveX controls are only available in Microsoft Internet Explorer and should therefore only be used for intranet and extranet applications.
  • Java is cross-browser compatible. Small applets are fine for the internet, but more complex interfaces are best used in an intranet or extranet.
  • Omnis Studio renders feature-rich applications in a browser using a small plug-in. Again, this is better for and intranet or extranet, as many people hesitate to load new plugins to their browser unless they plan to be regular visitors.

What are the Thick-Client Application Options?

A thick-client is an application running on the user's PC, which may be Windows, Linux, Mac (OSX), or others.

Most programming languages can create a thick-client application rather than just a thin-client web browser interface. These applications can communicate with a server over secured network connections, while providing an interface that is generally much richer than that available in a thin-client browser.

Java and Omnis Studio are excellent choices for cross platform thick-client applications. Visual Basic is ideal for all Windows users, though it is now technically an obsolete development product. Other common development languages include C++ and Delphi.

What are the connectivity options?

  • For MultiValue applications, Coyote, FlashCONNECT, WebWizard, jBASE Web Builder, and other products are in common use.
  • MV applications can also be connected to the web through ASP, JSP, ColdFusion, PHP, Perl, Python, and ODBC. If you have internal or contracted web developers, these are the tools that they are familiar with for building web sites.
  • Custom sockets can also be used. These are very fast and usually require no middle-tier between the client and server, but custom sockets are usually used in intranet or extranet environments, their coding is very platform-specific, there are some platform-specific stability issues, and they will still consume licenses in some environments.


The term "support" does not imply that support is definitively not available from any source, however none of the MV-based text processors are scheduled for any further enhancements or ports to new platforms.

IBM owns and maintains JET, but there is widespread doubt that they will continue to support it for many MV DBMS platforms.

Raining Data supports Runoff and the Output Processor in D3, but there are currently no guarantees that these subprocessors will be fixed if a change to other D3 components breaks them accidentally.

UltiWord was a component of Ultimate systems and there is no known support.

Please e-mail us at if you would like us to revise this support information.


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