26 July 2016 Firefly: embracing future web technologies
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Abstract
At IPAC/Caltech, we have developed the Firefly web archive and visualization system. Used in production for the last eight years in many missions, Firefly gives the scientist significant capabilities to study data. Firefly provided the first completely web based FITS viewer as well as a growing set of tabular and plotting visualizers. Further, it will be used for the science user interface of the LSST telescope which goes online in 2021. Firefly must meet the needs of archive access and visualization for the 2021 LSST telescope and must serve astronomers beyond the year 2030. Recently, our team has faced the fact that the technology behind Firefly software was becoming obsolete. We were searching for ways to utilize the current breakthroughs in maintaining stability, testability, speed, and reliability of large web applications, which Firefly exemplifies. In the last year, we have ported the Firefly to cutting edge web technologies. Embarking on this massive overhaul is no small feat to say the least. Choosing the technologies that will maintain a forward trajectory in a future development project is always hard and often overwhelming. When a team must port 150,000 lines of code for a production-level product there is little room to make poor choices. This paper will give an overview of the most modern web technologies and lessons learned in our conversion from GWT based system to React/Redux based system.
© (2016) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
W. Roby, W. Roby, X. Wu, X. Wu, T. Goldina, T. Goldina, E. Joliet, E. Joliet, L. Ly, L. Ly, W. Mi, W. Mi, C. Wang, C. Wang, Lijun Zhang, Lijun Zhang, D. Ciardi, D. Ciardi, G. Dubois-Felsmann, G. Dubois-Felsmann, "Firefly: embracing future web technologies", Proc. SPIE 9913, Software and Cyberinfrastructure for Astronomy IV, 99130Y (26 July 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2233042; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2233042
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