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How To Use AJAX

Article Description

AJAX, an acronym for Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, is very hot in the growing universe of Web development. While this new technology offers some great capabilities, it also sparks some unquestionable debate over issues with the Back button. Kris Hadlock explains how to use AJAX in a real-world situation and how you can assess its value in a project. By the time you finish reading this article, you'll know what AJAX is as well as where, why, and how to use it.

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Assessing Your Needs

Now that you know the basics of how to use AJAX, deciding whether to use it on a project will certainly be the next step. The most important thing to keep in mind is that you can't use the Back button when you're not refreshing the page. Focus on smaller sections of your project that could benefit from using this type of interaction. For instance, you could build a form that queries a script every time a user enters an input field, or even types a letter in order to provide real-time validation. You could build a drag-and-drop page that sends data to a script on the release of an item and saves the state of the page to a database. The reasons for using AJAX definitely exist and are beneficial not only to the development experience but to users; it all depends on the situation and execution.

There are also ways to work around the issues with the Back button, such as with Google Gmail, which now provides an undo for steps that you make without refreshing the page. Many more creative examples are sure to surface, which will benefit users by providing developers with ways to create unique, real-time experiences.

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