Saturday, May 21, 2005 A Simpler Ajax Path A Simpler Ajax Path: "A Simpler Ajax Path
by Matthew Eernisse

I began working with web applications back in the bad old days, when making an application behave like a desktop app meant wrestling with byzantine table-based layouts nested five and six levels deep, and horrid, hackish frame sets within frame sets within frame sets. Those were the days.

Things have steadily improved for web developers with the advent of standards-compliant browsers, CSS, DHTML, and the DOM. Pervasive broadband access has made web apps feel a lot snappier. Now something called the XMLHttpRequest object makes it even easier to develop full-blown, superinteractive applications to deploy in the browser.

While not exactly new, the XMLHttpRequest object is receiving more attention lately as the linchpin in a new approach to web app development, most recently dubbed Ajax (asynchronous JavaScript and XML), which powers the cool features found on sites like Flickr, Amazon's, and the new poster children for whizzy web-based interactivity, Google Maps and Google Suggest. The snazzy Ajax moniker seems to be getting some momentum--it's popping up in all sorts of places, including the Ajaxian weblog and the recent Ajax Summit put together by O'Reilly Media and Adaptive Path."

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