Ajax: The Definitive Guide (英語) ペーパーバック – 2008/1
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Is Ajax a new technology, or the same old stuff web developers have been using for years? Both, actually. This book demonstrates not only how tried-and-true web standards make Ajax possible, but how these older technologies allow you to give sites a decidedly modern Web 2.0 feel.
The book also explains:
- How to connect server-side backend components to user interfaces in the browser
- Loading and manipulating XML documents, and how to replace XML with JSON
- Manipulating the Document Object Model (DOM)
- Designing Ajax interfaces for usability, functionality, visualization, and accessibility
- Site navigation layout, including issues with Ajax and the browser's back button
- Adding life to tables & lists, navigation boxes and windows
- Animation creation, interactive forms, and data validation
- Search, web services and mash-ups
- Applying Ajax to business communications, and creating Internet games without plug-ins
- The advantages of modular coding, ways to optimize Ajax applications, and more
Maybe it was just me. But I got a lot more out of other references.
I bought this book because for upcoming project, I wanted a deeper understanding of Ajax. Also sometimes, while using Scriptaculous, debugging was not easy, because I didn't know what was really going on behind the scenes.
After reading this book, I have better understanding of Ajax. This doesn't mean I am Ajax expert now and ready to write my own library. I will stick with existing libraries. But I feel this book has given me enough basic concepts of Ajax (and also some general web design concepts) that I can use Ajax libraries without breaking anything unintentionally.
I don't think I will read another book on Ajax unless I am doing some custom Ajax coding.
For those new to this concept, to be asynchronous on a Website is to avoid both 1. the flicker of Websites each time a page reloads and 2. the wait for validation data to be returned from the server before the next form element, for example, can be filled out.
Further to the strengths, Head First AJAX provides utility functions (which are functions that are used frequently throughout the scripts and separated into their own file) that work across browsers. For example, a utility function for adding event handlers in either Internet Explorer or DOM level 2 browsers, such as Firefox, is included.
Also, a utility function for creating requests sent to the server (to update the page with, say, validation data or new content) is provided that works across both old and new Internet Explorer and Dom Level 2 browsers.
A fantastic discussion of the benefits of XML and JSON for data transfers is presented in the book, although I was not clear on where exactly the XML and JSON data is stored and how it connects to the overall scripts. Likely this misgiving of mine is due to my lack of experience with XML and JSON, especially as it relates to the server. Nonetheless, Head First AJAX provides an excellent springboard for learning these technologies in further depth.
One piece of advice for the reader to heed is to know that the PHP component of server communications is not discussed in any meaningful detail in the book. It is assumed that the reader will have someone take care of the PHP server communications.
I would recommend reading Larry Ullman's PHP series, starting with his PHP for the Web, followed by his PHP and MySQL, and topped with his MySQL. I haven't read the Head First PHP and MySQL book, but, after reading Head First AJAX, I certainly plan on doing so.