Edition cover

  • ISBN10: 0321472667
  • ISBN13: 9780321472663
  • Paperback
  • 216 pages
  • New Riders

Bulletproof Ajax
by Jeremy Keith

Reviewed by Dan Champion

Rating: 5 out of 5

  • Posted 14 years ago
  • Viewed 7527 times, 9 comments
  • Average user rating: (4.2/5)

Ajax done right

With the vast amount of information on the web about Ajax, you might wonder why anyone would bother spending money on a book about this headline technology of web 2.0. I don't know if it's just me, or if other web developers share my paranoia, but the trouble with a great deal of the advice on the web is that I just don't trust it. In the words of Paul Buchheit, "Advice = limited life experience + overgeneralization".

When it comes to a key emerging technology like Ajax, which I may well be using in my work and placing under public scrutiny, I want a definitive view from a trusted source. I don't just want to know how to do something, I want to be sure that the way I'm being shown how to do it is the right way, which won't compromise my standards or leave me with more work in the long term.

When it comes to all things javascript, the man I trust above all others is Jeremy Keith. Having already consumed his marvellous DOM Scripting, this seemed like just the book to teach me how to use Ajax to enhance the web the right way.

As you may know, there are serious problems with many of the Ajax implementations on the web today, the most common being that they make little effort to be accessible, and they don't work if javascript is unavailable. Horray then for Hijax, the term Jeremy's coined for the progressive enhancement of websites using Ajax. The principles are simple - build sites using traditional techniques, depending on HTTP GET and POST, then enhance them with DOM scripting and Ajax.

The book provides a crash-course in javascript and the DOM, before going in to the nitty gritty of XMLHttpRequest, data formats and Hijax. The worked examples are straightforward and will give you a grounding in the basics of using links and forms as initiators of Ajax processes. They gave me enough confidence to produce my own independent examples in a short space of time.

The author is honest enough to admit that Hijax doesn't solve all of the problems associated with Ajax - it's still a pretty inaccessible technology for many users of assistive technologies like screenreaders. For these users the only real solution today is to give them the option to turn Ajax off on your site, although there's a lot of innovative work being done to overcome the problems and find ways to provide the feedback these users need from Ajax apps.

If you're considering using Ajax on a website, or already do so and want to learn more about how it should be done, don't take any chances - buy this book. For me there's nothing better online or in print.

Creative Commons License, some rights reserved


manolo says:


Having just reviewed the Iliad, I expected Ajax to be a (now disgraced) ancient Greek warrior. Imagine my disappointment.....



#1 Posted 13 years ago

raman says:

Ajax is now getting popular. But still there are lot of limitations and to make the ajax site seo friendly it is hard task

#2 Posted 8 years ago

Forsbez says:

Love it!

#3 Posted 8 years ago

Computerans says:

Great Book!

#4 Posted 7 years ago

robertkane says:

Proactol Reviews

#5 Posted 7 years ago

k85amit says:

its good to know about ajax .. pastlifeconnection

#6 Posted 7 years ago

sandhisudhaoil says:

ajax specially create the look and feel in website.


#7 Posted 7 years ago

JoknQ says:

It's ok!

#8 Posted 7 years ago

PeluangUsahaBaru says:

its nice

#9 Posted 6 years ago

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