Wednesday, December 27, 2006

AJAX for beginners

Take a look on the net and you'll see endless pages of AJAX Frameworks: libraries which promise to do all the trivial and dirty AJAX work for you, leaving you free to code without actually understanding how the application you're writing really works. So lets pull back the smoke and mirrors and see what AJAX is and why it's just a simple evolution of client/server tricks Javascript programmers have been doing since the web was born.

Simply put, AJAX is a method for your javascript programs to talk to your server and send and request data. There's nothing particularly new about this. Javascript programmers have been communicating with the server in the background ever-since the FRAME tag became available. So we'll begin learning about AJAX by learning how things were done before AJAX became buzzworthy. The first thing to do is to set up an iframe somewhere on the page.

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