infoTECH Feature

February 03, 2014

IBM i Goes Offline

Wi-Fi and 4G have become the buzzwords of the century, with access points and data networks appearing all over the world. As easy as it is now to get connected, we still experience the occasional train tunnel and elevator shaft that leaves our phones and tablets (and even ourselves) screaming for a signal. In those moments, we reach a dark moment, one in which Twitter, Facebook (News - Alert), and Google go into radio silence, waiting for us to come back to the surface for some air to breathe.

To help counter this problem, m-Power has a solution: Allow IBM (News - Alert) i shops that use its programming environment to develop HTML5-powered apps that will work even in the absence of an internet connection. This is good for business, given that the ability to work despite the lack of a connection is one of the biggest boosts to competitiveness one can encounter. As communications go down and some businesses are frozen solid, it's nice to know that one's own infrastructure remains unaffected because of a dreadful train tunnel.

When employees lose their internet connection, the application will automatically switch over to its offline mode, allowing them to work continuously. Once the internet signal comes back and the agony is over, the app will start sending data to the company database. According to mrc, the entire process is automated and takes advantage of HTML5's offline storage feature. This feature works by allowing apps to cache their data on the device until the ability to transmit this data appears at a later point in time.

Tyler Wassell, mrc's software development manager, said, “This new enhancement further closes the gap between native and mobile Web app capabilities. Now, m-Power users can create powerful mobile web apps that function regardless of a web connection.”

At last, enterprise apps may have caught up to consumer apps, which were able to store data offline for years.

Edited by Ryan Sartor

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