Thursday, November 15, 2007

Overweight Ajax

I came across an interesting article this morning on Ajaxian:  Ajax, Browsers, Running Out of Time.  The crux of the article is that the author's PC consistently gets bogged down if he leaves Ajax-heavy applications - such as Google Mail, Zimbra & Yahoo Mail - up for most of the day.   I can understand his pain, as i have noticed similar behavior with the new Yahoo Mail.  Sure, it's much "cooler" and easier to use than the "classic" version, but it comes with a cost.

This is why I am still very cautious and conservative when using Ajax components in APEX applications.  It's still too easy to create code that just doesn't play nice with browsers.  It's also 100% impossible to discern what else a browser is running when your Ajax component is fired up, which makes it all the more difficult to ensure that your code doesn't step on someone else's.

For better or worse, perception is reality.  If large-scale Ajax applications that the masses use degrade overall confidence in the technology, it will be even harder in the future to convince clients that even the smallest Ajax component in an APEX application is scalable, secure, and a good investment.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

AJAX's days are numbered. Sooner or later, something like Adobe's Flex or Microsoft's Silverlight are going to become the norm for creating web-based applications.

Although HTML was never intended to be used for data entry, the browser makers and organizations like W3C have sat idle for far too long by not introducing native HTML widgets that would have filled the large gap that AJAX components now fill.

Carl Backstrom said...

>>
AJAX's days are numbered. Sooner or later, something like Adobe's Flex or Microsoft's Silverlight are going to become the norm for creating web-based applications.
>>

bah what do you work for adobe or microsoft?

the problem is you have people throwing ajax at things that have no need for it.

I use ajax everyday and carefully decided where and when to put it, when and where it makes sense and it kicks a...

proprietary formats silverlight and flex /air and truthfully xul are bad.

Why buy into in micorsoft and adobes personal little war when you can just follow web standards. Javascript and html work everywhere even your brand spanking new iphone.

Carl Backstrom said...

Not you Scott ;) my comment was for the first "Anonymous" commenter.

Scott said...

I'm going to have to agree more with Carl here; there will be some people who go with Adobe and MSFT, but I think that keeping with a standard, portable format is more advantageous.

Ajax is relatively young, and like most young technologies, people do stupid things with it. How many spinning, flaming Java applet logos were there in the 90s?

I also think that people will be hesitant to adopt another MSFT web "standard", for fear of some obscure dependency on IE. Remember what MSFT did to Java?

HTML is simply too common to be quickly or completely replaced, at least in the next several years.

- Scott -

mathewbutler said...

I don't have a problem with AJAX per se.

However, I'm still using the old version fo yahoo mail, and given the choice will continue to do so.

Mathew Butler