December 02, 2005

Ajax: Just because we can?

Just read an interesting Article over at ALA which also mentions new techology like AJAX and the like being too much hyped and immediately being used without thinking about the user and his needs first.

Let's make a test. I recently developed something at work, where many would see AJAX written all over it. Look at the movie below:

Is this using AJAX? Let me know in the comments (sorry, TypeKey login required now due to crazy comment spam)!

BTW: the above is a live recording right out of my browser window. No editing involved other than scaling the movie down to 60%.



And the answer is: the above is no ajax at all. What you see in the movie, is a plain vanilla reload of the whole page after the popup gets changed (the page is dynamicaly generated from a database).

Fact is, the browser is caching everything so nicely, that the user doesn't even experience any visual difference between a simple reload and typical AJAX request, so in this case there is no benefit in using ajax.

In fact - not using ajax - gives the benefit, that the user can even bookmark the page which even includes how he set the filters (the pulldowns).


Matt is correct, as long as you "only" play with the style properties of a , where is the Ajax? :)

I mean JavaScript is capable of many, many things on its own.

Then again, the term is hyped like crazy and the people who are usually all for it wouldn't know how to tell the difference.


It doesn't necessarily have to be AJAX. In fact, it's far simpler not to be AJAX, though it really could be. Technically, all you need is some hidden DIVs that are shown with an image placed inside when the drop-down changes. Something similar to that.


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