I recently mentioned a company called Netli, a company formed about three years ago that came out of stealth mode in April with a service called NetLightning.NetLightning's focus is on speeding up critical business applications delivered via the Internet. I spoke with Netli CEO John Peters recently, and he talked about the difference between content delivery networks (CDN) and Netli's approach. While CDNs push content out to the edge of the network, Netli is all about speeding up the delivery of applications from a central server."CDNs focus on bandwidth-intensive content. Our focus is on response-time-sensitive applications," he says. "We're about centralized delivery and allowing customers to consolidate infrastructure without giving up performance."Businesses are often reluctant to put critical applications on the Web because of problems with performance, Peters says. Those that do often use distributed data centers so that their application is actually deployed closer to end users.Netli lets businesses run applications in a centralized location without suffering from response-time delays, Peters says. HP, for example, was getting complaints about the response time of its developer portal from software developers in Asia and Europe. HP now uses Netli to give the application that is deployed in Atlanta a performance boost. "The complaints went away," Peters says.NetLightning is a managed service and requires no coding changes, Peters says. All customers do is redirect their DNS to Netli, which has 13 points of presence around the world. A Netli server intercepts the request, repackages it into a specialized protocol and then sends it on its way across the Internet. It's intercepted by another Netli server on the other end, repackaged into HTTP or TCP\/IP and sent to the Web server. The same thing then happens in reverse as the Web server responds to user requests."Most businesses don't use the Internet for mission-critical applications," Peters says. "We want to change that."