I want to use a browser to communicate with running background executable - kind of like how a browser is used to control a sophisticated copier on an office network.

Can I open a web page from a "local" .html file - similar to how my public facing webpages are served up by IIS?

Then once the page is loaded - being that it's jQuery - can I use AJAX to talk to executables running on the same machine? How would the executable open a port that the jQuery ajax could talk to??