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Separate business logic and front end

People tend to judge a framework by its front end because this is the only “visible” part of an application.

But Lino’s beauty lies beyond the front end. Lino is designed to have many possible front ends. Lino comes with an extensible collection of out-of-the-box front ends. You can write a Lino application once and then deploy it via different web interfaces.

So it is difficult to answer the question “how does Lino look like”?

There are currently two realistic choices for the front end: lino.modlib.extjs (the legacy front end based on ExtJS, still used on several production sites) and the React front end (the modern front end that we recommend for new projects). The Demo sites page shows both front ends for some applications.

The quality of these front ends is admittedly less user-friendly than what people are used to get on big web applications where hundreds of developers have been working hard to make it a perfect ergonomic experience.

But it is good enough. More than hundred users use it every day, and most of them love it. Which doesn’t mean that they never complain about certain known oddnesses. Don’t forget that complaining is an integral part of loving.

Lino has currently only these two choices because because writing and maintaining a front end is a big task, because our resources are limited, and because there are many other, more interesting tasks to be done.

There are several proofs of concept for alternative front ends. An overview of these research projects in More about front ends.