Narain is the founder & CEO for 360 Degree Interactive, a web services firm based in Chennai, India. This blog is about his personal views on Web 2.0, RoR, Social networking,Digital media, interactive advertising, SaaS, Service Oriented Architecture, India Inc, rural education, Web standards, mobile 2.0 and more.

Thursday, December 1

Ajax to AHAH

The creator of Ruby on rails, David is working on a pet project which is aiming at creating a subset of Ajax. Listed as a project under microformats, AHAH, strictly is a subset of Ajax. The name is actually an acronym for "Asychronous HTML and HTTP". The use of XML Httprequest which is the base of Ajax, now webpages can be linked dynamically with strict, semantic HTML itself.
AHAH is intended to be a much simpler way to do web development than AJAX : "Asynchronous JavaScript and XML." Strictly speaking, AHAH can be considered a subset of AJAX, since (X)HTML is just a special kind of XML. However, it is a subset with some very specific and useful properties:

1. The lack of custom XML schemas dramatically reduces design time
2. AHAH can trivially reuse existing HTML pages, avoiding the need for a custom web service
3. All data transport is done via browser-friendly HTML, easing debugging and testing
4. The HTML is designed to be directly embedded in the page's DOM, eliminating the need for parsing
5. As HTML, designers can format it using CSS, rather than programmers having to do XSLT transforms
6. Processing is all done on the server, so the client-side programming is essentiall nil (moving opaque bits)

In fact, for any content that is destined to be viewed by the browser, it is virtually impossible to imagine any advantage to sending it as custom XML rather than structurally-correct HTML (with appropriate CSS-friendly class names, of course).
Technorati Tags: AHAH, Ajax, Ruby on Rails


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