If, like me you have been following the development of Microsoft’s own flavour of Ajax, codenamed Atlas, for the past six months or so then you won’t be surprised to know that they have released Beta 1 of what will become the released version of the product.
If you never heard of Atlas then fear not. Atlas, or MS Ajax as I will now call it, is simply Microsoft’s take on the whole AJAX Scene. AJAX is not a new technology but thanks to Google and a fair few other key players it has become the new must have technology on the web.
So What is so special about Microsoft’s offering? To be honest, not a lot. the main difference between Microsoft’s version of AJAX and the myriad other AJAX libraries out there is that it is designed to tie in very closely with ASP .net 2.0 allowing developers using ASP .Net to incorporate AJAX into their applications.
Microsoft are not the only ones out there doing this though.
Ajax Pro and Script.Aculo.Us.netare but two I can mention, I’m certain that a quick ten minutes in Google will produce information on others.
Is it worth looking at the Microsoft offering? I think so. It’s not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but the fact that Microsoft themselves are encouraging a community input on the project, and in some cases even making changes as demanded by the community, is encouraging. The whole project has another upside to as we all get a deeper insight into the Microsoft Developer mindset. This is encouraging as we get to see that microsoft Developers are not gods after all, they are just damn good at what they do, as are we all.
You can get hold of MS Ajax, and join in with the community here.
If, like me you also enjoy developing non ASP.Net Web Sites and fancy experimenting with adding Atlas to your projects, you may be interested in checking out Mochikit, Script.Aculo.Us, Rico, and the fantastic Prototype framework that most if not all of the Ajax libraries out there are based on.
I have not gone into great detail on any of these libraries here deliberately. I have often fallen into the trap of simply reading up on one website all about a particular subject and not actually getting my hands dirty. the result of this is that you know a lot and know nothing all at the same time. Knowing that you can do x with y is not the same as knowing how to do x with y. so go and play and then blog your results so we all benefit a little.
Coffee of the Day is Café Elvis, a dark roast from a small farm in Honduras, caffein rush level: 7/10