Ajax reduces load time

Earlier web applications submit user completed forms to a web server and the web server responds by sending a web page back. This makes applications run more slowly and awkwardly than their native counterparts. Ajax is a term that refers to the use of a group of technologies together. Ajax applications can send requests to the web server to retrieve only the data that is needed; usually using SOAP or some other XML-based web services dialect. JavaScript processes the web server response at client side.

The final result is a quick interface, as the amount of data exchanged between the web browser and web server is greatly condensed. Web server processing time is also saved, since much of it is done on the client. Ajax is more a natural progression from an existing set of techniques as opposed to being something completely brand new. Yet within that progression, things are markedly different than in previous years in a couple of key areas.

Ajax provides a device to juggle up xml with xhtml. It drastically abridges the job fetching things from the server. It also defeats some speed glitches that conventional Web development has fallen prey too. In most instances an Ajax based site will load quicker than a comparable traditional Web site. Ajax significantly reduces initial load times. Ajax has some problems that it needs to overcome as it continues to mature.

But it is a promising field to be involved within and as the years roll on, it probably will greatly affect the way we think about building Web pages and Web applications. It also has to be apparent that Ajax is not a technology as such but to a certain extent is a technique that merges well with other technologies and techniques. For example: XHTML XML, DHTML and CSS. Actually, Ajax really is DHTML with the xmlhttprequest object thrown in. It is wonderful to believe how one object can modify the whole scenario of web technologies.

Using Web Standards in Web Pages

WWW is a common space where users can share information to work together, play, and socialize. But in this period of tremendous growth, the Web needs guidance to realize its full potential. Web standards provide the necessary guidance and help to ensure that everyone has access to the information we are providing, and also make web development faster and more enjoyable.

Standards compliance makes it easier for the people with special needs to utilize the Web to its fullest. Blind people may have their computer read web pages to them. People with poor eyesight may have pages rearranged and magnified for easier reading. And people using hand-held devices can browse the Web just as easily as those using high-end workstations.

W3C standards

HTML 4.0 – HyperText Markup Language
XML 1.0 – Extensible Markup Language
XHTML 1.0, 1.1, and Modularization
CSS – Cascading Style Sheets
DOM 1 – Document Object Model Level 1

HTML/XHTML as a standard

HTML has evolved during its development, and is available in several versions. All of these versions are standards, and you can select one that meets your requirement. Most of the time, the latest version will be the best choice, unless you target a very specific audience, or older, broken browsers. The version you choose defines the elements and attributes you can use.

For example, in HTML 4.01, you will find the list of elements and the list of attributes you are allowed to use in your pages. You can edit your pages manually, a means usually referred to as “hand-coding” or “writing the source”.

List of elements:

http://www.w3.org/TR/html401/index/elements.html

List of attributes

http://www.w3.org/TR/html401/index/attributes.html

Advantages of Using Web Standards:

  1. Greater visibility in web searches.
  2. Gives opportunity of validating your page with a validation service.
  3. Compliant documents can easily be migrated for devices such as TVs and PDAs.
  4. Enables Kids to enjoy the web surfing using graphical browsers used to enhance high-end graphics and animations views.
  5. Enables people with disabilities (using Braille or voice browsers) to browse the Internet with ease.
  6. Compatibility with the future browsers.
  7. Cross browser compatibility.