1.2. Purpose

This application is intended to provide operating system integration and other infrastructural support for a user configurable set of FileHandler plugins.

While basic operations concerning the file system are supported by the application itself and can be restricted in flexible ways, all dealing of file contents is handled by those plugins.

The set of these plugins can be configured and/or restricted by the user or a system administrator, depending on the usage scenario. The features allow a setup as a normal desktop environment for users, as well as running the application in a kiosk mode, where users can perform a lot of tasks but are not allowed to change anything.

The FileHandlers are often meant to provide some specific functionality which is missing from the operating system for certain types of files. By making them available in a platform independent shell application such as this one, the identical functionality can thus be used under all platforms which support the Java platform with a graphical environment.

This application is not intended as a replacement of operating system specific tools and possibilities, rather it should extend them and work in conjunction with them. For this very reason, many specific tasks are not available, as the platforms standard tools already provide them and the additional usability would by no means justify the implied costs of re-implementing them.

Future development might lessen the number of such missing possibilities, but this will be decided on a case by case basis.

Another goal of the application is to provide the framework for some setup that can be used without installation (apart from the necessary Java support) to deal with a large (and extensible) set of file types. While many users migrate a lot of their data files from system to system, they often lose track of the applications to deal with those files and end up with a lot of these files being worthless, as there is no more way to display (or otherwise handle) them.

Conscious users can now restrict themselves to a well defined set of file formats in combination of FileHandlers to at least ensure accessibility of the data contained in old data files.