What we need are applications that have the deployment characteristics of browser-based applications but have equivalent power and more interactivity than desktop applications. Thats what RIAs are all about. They bring complexity on two levels. First, computing happens on both the client and the server over a potentially unreliable WAN. Second, they aim to deliver highly interactive user experiences (UEs). Dont blow that second requirement off. Research clearly shows that users respond better to these types of interfaces. Who wants to use old-style Web maps when you can go with Google maps or the Flash-based AbMap?