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Ajax: the Microsoft way

Second part of my Ajax adventure was rather boring; I simply wrote standard ASP.NET application and added couple update panels to ajaxify it. This app is similar to the first one, except it writes/reads to XML instead of flat file and works specifically with links. I didn’t even need second page or service to send request to, code-behind served this purpose just fine. And this is where Microsoft Ajax strength is – it lets you write your C#/VB code and don’t worry too much about JavaScript. Well, it is to say if you doing it the easy way. You can go whole nine yards with web services and end up with totally different architecture (SOA is another buzz word) if you want to do it the right way, but it is kind of out of scope in my little research. Anyways, here is my conclusions (ok, I admit, it is crazy to make conclusions after next to nothing experience, but I’ll do it anyway; I’ve seen countries going to war with less research on their hands; my conclusions will harm no one).

1. If you not interested in Ajax offerings whatsoever but sometimes forced to make your ASP page perform server calls without reloading, you might get away with few JavaScript functions added to your app and simple calls from client script. This is what BlogEngine is doing, and you can follow the lead.

2. If you absolutely positively hate JavaScript and don’t want to deal with it under any circumstances, you can happily write your apps never leaving comfort of Visual Studio, throwing update panels occasionally here and there and tell your friends you are cool Ajax developer and have some pages to prove it.

3. If you are JavaScript freak, you probably already have one of many frameworks for all your needs (Prototype, Scriptaculous, Rico, moo.. the list is endless). Each and every one of them our days come with Ajax built in – you just have to learn particular way of using it.

4. For hardcore Microsoft developer, there is no substitute for using Microsoft Ajax extensions. You can start from making your existing application use Ajax through the magic of update panel, get into server controls toolkit supported by vibrant online community and then move your way up all the way to the SOA nirvana. And the best part is that in .NET 3.5 Ajax is not different from ADO or XML – it is part of the core framework. You (and your hosting provider) will get it for free after next upgrade, love it or hate it. You can start investing in your future now.

Comments (2) -

Truly your blog is great and informative.

I agree. This blog is helpful. Thank you for the tips.

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