A couple of years ago, I blogged about an phenomenon called Bukimi no tani or Uncanny Valley. Jeff Atwood of Coding Horror posted a blog expanding on Bill Higgins description of a User Interface anti-pattern. The anti-pattern is where users experience Uncanny Valley expecting a web application and instead are given a desktop application.
“A web app that apes the conventions of a desktop application is attempting to cross the uncanny valley of user interface design. This is a bad idea for all the same reasons; the tiny flaws and imperfections of the simulation will be grossly magnified for users.”
Coding Horror: Avoiding The Uncanny Valley of User Interface
The Uncanny Valley of user interface design
If you plan to create a rich desktop application use Adobe Flex, SilverLight, or Smart Client Architecture.