AJAX – Asynchronous Javascript and XML

Google have recently been demonstrating some interesting web browser based client/server type functionality in some of their beta products. Most noticable of these is the Google Suggest site which drops down a list of word suggestions as you type.

News.com have an article today about this type of functionality picking up speed to offer a richer user experience, using older technologies to achieve the result.

To avoid reloading a page when the user selects an action in the page, typically some Javascript is used to call a function in a hidden frame on the page to retrieve some data from the server. When the data is returned Javascript can be used to update the main page with the new data. Simple but effective.

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