In looking for a way to implement something for my client’s strategic partner, I identified a major pain point with the existing app (which I happen to know is done in ASP.NET MVC 5, that is, .NET Framework rather than .NET Core / 6+, as it was implemented by another team with my old client). This pain point is the difficulty in maintaining user state, especially with relatively unsophisticated users who might use the back button or type in a different URL and expect the back button to restore their work context, or expect to leave it running, go home, come back the next morning and have it intact. Standard web technology is “leaky” at this, at best. What is needed is something much closer to a standard line-of-business desktop app in terms of statefulness and control.
Since this app will need to be developed quickly (user is being abandoned by former client this July), and it will likely fall on me to do it, I also want something comfortable for my somewhat dated front-end abilities. Of late I’ve been doing WinForms admin apps to support operations, and this has come back to me very readily; this is what I’m most productive doing.
The perfect solution appears to be WiseJ, which is a set of libraries and a Visual Studio plugin that produces a development paradigm / developer experience very similar to WinForms (porting WinForms solutions to WiseJ is easy, for example) yet deploys to a web server.
Comparison of WiseJ to ASP.NET: Wisej.NET and ASP.NET: Two Sides of the Same Coin - CodeProject
Comparison of WiseJ to Blazor: Wisej.NET vs Blazor - CodeProject
I’m going to be evaluating this. There’s a Community edition that’s free, that would probably suffice, but my client would happily spring for the paid editions ($1K and $2K-ish, the latter being Enterprise edition with priority support). I will let everyone know how it goes. A concern would be scalability, but this is an app that would be used by, at most, 2 or 3 users at a time and reviews indicate its ability to handle huge data sets is robust, plenty for my needs anyway.
There’s a chance this opportunity might not happen but if WiseJ checks out, I will probably use it to migrate some of those admin apps I mentioned to web for greater deployment flexibility.