Skip to main content

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.

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

Popular posts from this blog

Thanks, ODC (Oracle Developer Community)!

I owe a lot of thanks to the ODC - which stands for Oracle Developer Community.  What is ODC?  You may remember it as OTN, or the Oracle Technology Network.  Same people, different name.  Why they changed it I can't say.  People just liked it better that way... (love that song)

In any case, what am I thankful for?  A lot.  To start, the tools that I use day in and day out: SQL Developer, ORDS, Oracle Data Modeler, SQLcl and - of course - APEX.  Without these tools, I'm likely on a completely different career path, perhaps even one that aligns more closely with my degree in television management.

While the tools are great, it's really the people that make up the community that make ODC stand out. From the folks who run ODC and the Oracle ACE program to the developers and product managers who are behind the awesome tools, the ODC community is one of, if not the greatest asset of being involved with Oracle's products.

If you have yet to get more involved with this communi…

Spaced Out

A while back, I wrote about how to give the Universal Theme a face lift.  If you follow the steps in that post, the base font for an APEX application with the Universal Theme can easily be changed.

While that's all well and good, sometimes you only want to change the font for a report, not the entire page.  One of the applications that I'm building contains a number of IRs based mostly on log data.  Thus, having that data in a monospaced font would make it a whole lot easier to read.

You can search Google Fonts for monospaced fonts by selecting only that option on the right-side menubar.  You can also opt for the standard yet kinda boring Courier and achieve the same thing.

To implement this in your application, follow the steps in my other post, but stop shy of the final step.  Instead of pasting in the text that I specify, paste in the following to the Custom CSS field in Theme Roller, using the name of the font you selected for the font-family:

.a-IRR-table tr td { font-fam…

Logging APEX Report Downloads

A customer recently asked how APEX could track who clicked “download” from an Interactive Grid.  After some quick searching of the logs, I realized that APEX simply does not record this type of activity, aside from a simple page view type of “AJAX” entry.  This was not specific enough, and of course, led to the next question - can we prevent users from downloading data from a grid entirely?

I knew that any Javascript-based solution would fall short of their security requirements, since it is trivial to reconstruct the URL pattern required to initiate a download, even if the Javascript had removed the option from the menu.  Thus, I had to consider a PL/SQL-based approach - one that could not be bypassed by a malicious end user.

To solve this problem, I turned to APEX’s Initialization PL/SQL Code parameter.  Any PL/SQL code entered in this region will be executed before any other APEX-related process.  Thus, it is literally the first place that a developer can interact with an APEX page…