Emilio Suarez's WebLog

Friday, March 25, 2005

Ajax is the name

There has been around a lot of talk recently on the usage of some new ways to develop web applications that provide a better user experience. The most important usages have come from Google. Applications like Google Suggest, and Google Maps, use a set of technologies to provide a faster user response, similar to a desktop application. http://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gif

I don't know how long has this term being around, but AJAX is the name.

So... what is AJAX?...

Jesse James Garrett from Adaptive Path coined the term "AJAX", which comes from Asynchronous JavaScript + XML

In his essay "Ajax: A new approach to web applications" he defines it as:

  • standards-based presentation using XHTML and CSS;
  • dynamic display and interaction using the Document Object Model;
  • data interchange and manipulation using XML and XSLT;
  • asynchronous data retrieval using XMLHttpRequest;
  • and JavaScript binding everything together.

And since article appeared in the last month... lots of people are now referring to the new term and there has been a lot of interest in using it... there is even a blog!. Even in the land of Ruby, Rails already support Ajax technologies. Matt Raible mentions a sample using Tapestry and Ajax.

I had been predicting that solutions based on the Flash player were going to rule the landscape of rich internet applications (like Flex and Laszlo), but I think that Ajax will get more traction from the community. Why? because it has the best of both worlds. The flexibility that XHTML, CSS, XML and XSLT provide, plus the rapid server communication of XMLHttpRequest combined with JavaScript. So I can see a lot of applications now following in the footsteps of Google... this is going to be an interesting year for RIAs.

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