SpreadsheetConverter HTML, Flash, iPhone/Android and ASP.NET
SpreadsheetConverter creates web pages that mimic the behavior of Excel spreadsheets. Depending on the requirements, the calculation of the formulas in the spreadsheet can be performed either in the web browser or on a web server.
The converted web page itself looks exactly the same regardless of what flavor of SpreadsheetConverter you used to create it. The only way to see if a web page is using server-based formula calculations is that cell recalculation is done manually.
Running the formulas in the web browser
If the spreadsheet formulas are calculated in the web browser, the whole spreadsheet can be placed very neatly in one single package sent to the browser.
- This is normally the fastest method, since there is no network communication after the web page has been downloaded to the browser.
- All cell values can be updated immediately after leaving an input field.
- The web page can be served from any web server, there are no special dependencies on the web server whatsoever.
- Since the server is not involved in the rendering of the web page, performance is only limited by each user's technical environment.
- The web page can be used offline, even if you're not connected to the Internet.
- Client-side calculations can be slow for large spreadsheets with many formulas.
- The web page contains all the programming code that performs the formula calculations. This makes can make the download slower. It can also impact the use of the spreadsheet with smaller devices like handheld computers or smartphones.
- The web page cannot interact dynamically with databases and other real-time data sources on the server.
SpreadsheetConverter Flash converts an Excel spreadsheet into a standalone Adobe/Macromedia Flash animation that uses Flash to calculate the formulas. You don't need any programming or web design skills to use SpreadsheetConverter Flash.
SpreadsheetConverter iPhone/Android converts an Excel spreadsheet for iPhone and Android smartphones. Mobile calculators can be used also when the smartphone is offline.
Running the formulas in the web server
If the formulas are calculated on the web server, the web page consists of two or more separate parts, a standard web page that is downloaded to the browser and one or more packages of programming code that reside on the server.
- Very large spreadsheets can be recalculated faster on a server.
- Using modern AJAX technology, spreadsheet cells are still updated immediately, with a minimum of network communication between the browser and the web server.
- Backend-integration is much easier, e.g to get the current interest rate for a mortgage calculator from a database or other real-time data source on or near the web server.
- Web pages can be password protected, since the web server is only available to authenticated users.
- The web page becomes smaller and can be downloaded faster, since it no longer contains the program code that calculates the cell formulas. This may also make it possible to use a complex spreadsheet with smaller devices like handheld computers or smartphones.
- The web page can only be used with the kind of server environment it was crated for, e.g. a web server capable of running ASP.NET code.
- The web page can only be used online, with a connection to the server.
- There is a theoretical upper limit to calculation performance, if the server has a very large number of simultaneous users.
What flavor of SpreadsheetConverter you select depends on your server environment:
- ASP-pages run on any Microsoft server with Internet Information Server, so they work well on both old servers like NT4 and newer ones. For this setup, use SpreadsheetConverter ASP.NET.
- ASP.NET.pages require a Microsoft server with Internet Information Server and DOT.NET, for example Windows Server 2003. Use SpreadsheetConverter ASP.NET in this environment.
SpreadsheetConverter ASP.NET generates a single ASPX page and an optional Code-Behind file for each Excel spreadsheet that it converts. SpreadsheetConverter HTML is included in SpreadsheetConverter ASP.NET.