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2005/03/07 Ajax

For a lot of us around a certain age, "Ajax" summons up images of a scrub brush and lots of soap bubbles, accompanied by a baritone rendition of "Ajax, the foaming cleanser", perhaps also blended with images of a large Greek warrior. That's not what this is.

Actually, it's just Javascript combined with something called an XMLHttpRequest Object, but "just" isn't fair: this is how Google does Gmail, Google Suggest, and Google Maps. It's an incredibly powerful way to have very interactive web pages without requiring the visitor to load something dumb and intrusive like Flash. Basically, it lets the server stay connected to the browser and interactively react to Javascript events.

Powerful things are possible with that. Interestingly, this page suggests that the power has been delayed for unknown reasons. Well, Google sure proved it can be done.

Some folks don't like the name (I think it was coined by the author of this essay: Ajax: A New Approach to Web Applications), but hey, do you want to tell the boss "We developed that with Javascript in a frame and XMLHttpRequest Object calling a php back end" or just say "We used Ajax. It's cool". Yeah, I thought so, so I predict the name will stick.

Here's an introduction: A Modern Reintroduction To AJAX.

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© Tony Lawrence

Wed Nov 12 10:16:59 2014: 12550   TonyLawrence


Thanks Laurie Hawkins for providing some updates and that "A Modern Reintroduction To AJAX" link.

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