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Author Topic: To AJAX or not to AJAX  (Read 4462 times)
nutballs
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« on: October 19, 2007, 10:16:02 PM »

Currently I am wrapping up my "stage 1" coding of an application I am working on, which eventually will be launched in the hopes of mass consumption by all, making me a multimillionaire. Of course, my delusions of grandeur require some planning, so I have a conundrum.

Do i Ajax or not?

first, some very covert explanations of what I am doing:
The application is actually a fairly simple app, but it does provide a service that I think is lacking. It is a single purpose application, meaning it does 1 thing, and thats it. Mind you it actually does q few things technically, but only in this one very specific niche, by doing the same thing a few different ways. think of shoes if you will. All are meant to protect the bottoms of your feet, but there are sandals, boots, sneakers, etc. This app would benefit from being accessible from mobile phones, not just the iPhone. All that ajax would really do in the case of this app is to reduce page loads, which could be a big deal for some users potentially.

The reason I single out the iPhone is because of ajax. The iPhone does ajax, no other phone does that I am aware of. Even if something does, not enough do yet. Eventually they will, but today, and even tomorrow, they don't.

So, to Ajax or to not. The advantage of not having to reload a page, which could contain alot of rows of data, each time the user adds or removes something would be great. However, it would also mean eliminating the cell phones.

Now technically, there is probably no reason to support cell phones with the Full application. I could create a small version, just for cell phones, eliminating most of the functionality, just the parts that I think would benefit from mobility.


mostly i am talking outloud. I think i have my answer from what I just said, which is, that I could AJAX it, and just provide a minimal feature set for mobile. Now my question is if it is worth it. I have a feeling that today, if you don't do an app with AJAX, people think its a bit Ghetto. Personally I think its overused, but i dont count for much but 1 vote.

bah fuck. how many more weeks is this gonna take me now... lol
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I could eat a bowl of Alphabet Soup and shit a better argument than that.
Dragonlaird
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Working with AJAX before it even had a name...


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« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2007, 01:59:07 AM »

Do you AJAX or not.. That is the question...

Well, a few things to consider...

Does your app need crawlability? If SEO is important then the answer should be No.
Does your app return a load of stuff for each page load? Images, scripts etc? If yes, then maybe AJAX would improve the speed.
Do you really want to develop another version of your app just for mobiles? If time is a factor then skip the AJAX route.

On a more personal note, I love AJAX... I developed a web-based ePOS system using it so if it can handle barcoding, card processing, printing, order processing, stock control and everything else, why not?

It's your choice but personally, I would go for AJAX every time if I could get away with it, hell I've even managed to develop a process to allow SEO and mobile integration automatically into a project I'm working on now so I see no reason to do it any other way for me...
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« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2007, 08:06:34 AM »

you can use ajax and be seo friendly
graceful degradation or progressive enhancement:
http://domscripting.com/presentations/xtech2006/
try this page with javascript on and off

i say ajax if it adds something for the user not ajax for the sake of it.
but you need shiny light green buttons.

dragonlaird you sound exactly like someone i worked with when i worked for the man. he was using ajax before it was called ajax or at least before i knew it was called ajax. he got a hard time for it from the other (java) developers because of all the the javascript they had to goes through for bugs & enhancements.
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perkiset
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« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2007, 12:02:10 PM »

IP / UA deliver.

Spiders IPDeliver: cloak, send a spider-friendly version. Do this on the same server, and make links to all of these pages available from the home page as well, so that if someone DID follow them they could see the same things, but the spider will get what it wants. Cloak to a list that is as tight as the FM spiderspy database, because this is an ONLY SHOW to confirmed crawlers app. Much like a retail application Wink

iPhone: send another version that is small, light and easy. Use ajax, BUT: I am using a lot of ajax on my phone with my back office warez and ran into trouble - the timing I expected from the server on a normal connection is shit through the Edge Network, so many times my Ajaxa component is timing out and retrying when it's actually just a *really* slow connection.

Normal: provide a very ajaxxy cool interface - that's the best way to hook clean and fry your surfers these days.

I'd use a themes mechanism to do this, so that it would be effortless to add any number of other themes, including international, browser specific, even engine specific Roll Eyes Also, I agree that other phones will not be getting away with a crippled browser for much longer... I think it's closer than you might imagine.


/p
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