Site News:
A Move to
In an effort to provide the best contribution that I can to the Ajax (and surrounding) communities, I've decided to join up with the fine folks over on to help make that an even better resource.

So, what does this mean for Well, the site will sill remain here so that posts linked to will not disappear, but there will no longer be any new posts from me here. Instead, I will be posting over on Ajaxian in their various sections. You can still keep an eye out for the kinds of posts that have been here all along - they'll be included with even more of the posts from Dion, Ben, Rob, and Michael.

If you'd like to subscribe to their feed, you can grab this link.

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AJAX sets off tools race
In this new article from today, they talk about the "tools race" that has been created to bring the best development toolkit to the anxiously awaiting Javascript developers out there.

The growing popularity of interactive Web sites has set off a race among software companies, each pitching their own development toolkit.

Among these is Sun Microsystems, which on Tuesday released Java Studio Creator 2, a free tool for building Web applications that promises to speed up AJAX-style development. IBM is getting into the fray too, with an announcement expected next week of its plans for selling tools that tap AJAX and for building a community of developers around these.

The article goes on, talking about some of the progress that's been made so far, and how it all will benefit the developers the most. With more toolkits they have to choose from, the more likely they'll find an environment they like and be more productive as a result...

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Ajax Magazine:
TV Listings online with an AJAX based interface
Ajax Magazine has posted this new item today that looks at a new beta service that the Tivo Central Online is offering - Ajax-enabled TV listings online.

TiVo Central Online have an excellent initiative to launch a new beta TV Listings service with an excellent user interface. The service is in beta but came with great features allowing to filter the listing for example you can choose the type of movies you want : action, comedy, children, drama, mystery, romance ... etc and then a color to show them with.

You can also change other options, making it almost fully customizable. The post even suggests that this might mark the way to a more personalized TV listing application down the road...

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Andrew Gilfrin's Blog:
XML - Using MySQL with AJAX
From Andrew Gilfrin's blog, there's this new post that looks at a very simple way to convert the output of a MySQL database to XML, thus making it easier for Ajax to grab.

There has been a few posts on PlanetMySQL recently with regard to an XML, firstly the new XML functions for extracting information from XML stored in standard tables and more recently an XML storage engine. It got me thinking, I've posted recently about working with AJAX and I've been developing some AJAX functionality for our clients. [...] What would be great is if we could use an Apache module to return the contents of a MySQL stored procedure, this procedure could accept parameters and return an XML document straight from Apache, no additional PHP layer just an HTTP response directly from the webserver interacting with MySQL.

His post was just a "what if" kind of thing, but, thankfully, the comments have come to the rescue and provided a clear, easy answer to the problem, making it possible to output XML almost directly from MySQL...

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IBM Proposes Open-Source AJAX Project to Eclipse
According to this new article on eWeek's site, IBM has come up with a proposal for a new open-srouce project that uses an Ajax style of development.

IBM Thursday proposed a new project, the ATF (AJAX Toolkit Framework) Project.

The AJAX Toolkit Framework will provide extensible frameworks and exemplary tools for building IDEs (integrated development environments) for the many different AJAX runtime offerings, such as Dojo, Zimbra, etc. in the market, according to the project proposal.

These frameworks will contain features for developing, deploying, debugging and testing AJAX applications, the proposal said.

The article goes on to talk about what kind of tools can be built on top of these frameworks, how it with take advantage of the pre-existing Eclipse extensions, and a "Personality Builder" function (allowing the simple creation of runtime frameworks).

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Ajax Developer's Journal:
Introducing the Backbase AJAX Develo
The Ajax Developer's Journal has their look today at one of the more prominent Ajax-related frameworks out there - the Backbase Ajax Development Framework.

"The arrival of solid development tools makes AJAX ready for the mainstream market," said Mark Driver, Research VP at Gartner, today as Backbase, a leading vendor of Ajax software, released version 3.1.1 of the Backbase AJAX Development Framework."

The new Backbase version 3.1.1 contains additional user interface controls such as data grid and live grid controls, a system skin that adapts itself to the look and feel of the operating system, and improved real-time debugging tools, Jouk noted.

It's a wonderful, full-featured framework, and there's even a Community Edition that's free to use for individuals and non-buisness uses...

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Eric's Blog:
Developers need to step back and think.
On Eric's blog today, he has a new post the encourages developers to take a step back and look at the application that they're developing - and really look hard to see if it needs Ajax.

I have been doing a lot of consulting lately looking at people's ideas for Ajax applications. Whole idea behind it is to tell them if it will work or not. I have seen some cool ideas, ideas I would have never thought of, but I have seen a lot of bad ones too. Now it really seems that people think "flashy" is good. If I add tons of crap people will love it. It may make your application top of the line, but you have to draw a line somewhere.

Developers have to remember don't change things that are normal by default and users can not read your mind on how things work! Do not override functionality!!!! I can not stress that point enough.

He talks further about good application design choices and the over-use of things like the "yellow fade technique" for no other purpose than that they can. As an example of the bad points he talks about, he points to the ASP.NET forums and their overuse of the fade technique...

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Sending Email with AJAX - Developing the Client-Side Application Layer
DevArticles has psoted the latest in their "Sending Email with Ajax" series today - part two that details things on the client side: Developing the Client-Side Application Layer.

Welcome to part two of the series "Sending email with AJAX." In three parts, this series goes through the making of a simple web-based email application. It uses AJAX as the driving technology for fetching the files responsible for sending email from the server, as well as for adding and updating contacts.

This part covers the development of a "email sender" module, a "contact listing" module, the "contact insertion" module, and, finally, starting things up with the initializeEmailClient function.

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