One of the most frustrating things about online tools is that you have to refresh the screen and get new information from the web server. However, a relatively new programming language, “Ajax” is being used more and more and is MORE like a software program one would us on a PC.
For example, Google’s Gmail automatically saves drafts of your email, performs spell checks and hilights mispelled words all with no need to refresh your computer screen.
The Associated Press writes The threat comes in large part from Ajax, a set of Web development tools that speeds up Web applications by summoning snippets of data as needed instead of pulling entire Web pages over and over.
“It definitely supports a Microsoft exit strategy,” said Alexei White, a product manager at Ajax developer eBusiness Applications Ltd. “I don’t think it can be a full replacement, but you could provide scaled-down alternatives to most Office products that will be sufficient for some users.”
Ironically, Microsoft invented Ajax in the late 90s and has used it for years to power an online version of its popular Outlook e-mail program.
Ajax’s resurgence in recent months is thanks partly to its innovative use by Google Inc. to fundamentally change online mapping. Before, maps were static: Click on a left arrow, wait a few seconds as the Web page reloads and see the map shift slightly to the left. Repeat. Repeat again.
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