NETnotifier is, basically, a notification engine.
A notification engine (in my warped imagination) is a server side application that exposes two webservice interfaces towards service providers and clients. A message sent by a service provider to NETnotifier can be delivered to the clients subscribed to said service.
It sounds confusing (or it’s just my prose), so let’s see an example:
A web forum software could be the service provider. One of the services provided by the web forum could be a notification of replies to a thread where a user contributed. The user will be informed in (semi)real time of new posts.
How does this work?
The service provider requests an account to the mantainer of the NETnotifier node. It is then issued a unique code that will be used in all subsequent communications from the web forum software.
A user creates an account on the NETnotifier node and subscribes to the web forum service.
Whenever the service provider sends a message to NETnotifier, the message is forwarded to all the user subscribed to that service.
And after reading what I just wrote, I’ll understand if you’ll suddenly feel the need to take a break or something… the concept is awfully described. 🙂
But it works and has some definite advantages compared to, say, .NET Alerts or similar services. First of all, it’s free, it can be federated and there are (planned) three different methods of delivery for notifications. I’m going to release some working code tomorrow night, so people out there can take a look and give me some feedback.