Relational Blocks: Fully Declarative Visual Application Assembly

Dramatic improvements in productivity might be achieved if programmers could fully define applications declaratively. Successful approaches exist for declarative definition of application Views and Models. However, the inability to similarly define an application’s business logic in a way that is compatible with the View and Model definitions has stymied progress towards the goal of fully declarative application assembly.

We present Relational Blocks as an attempt to solve this problem. Relational Blocks expresses business logic in relational algebra, and interfaces to an application’s View and Model through a relational API. Early results, from smallscale applications, show that this unified approach enables applications to be defined in a purely declarative fashion. Furthermore, we have exploited this behavior by building a editor that supports the visual construction – and immediate execution – of these declarative applications.

By: Avraham Leff; James T. Rayfield

Published in: RC23908 in 2006


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