Wednesday, March 29th, 2006

Big League Battle in Ajax Development

Category: Ajax, Programming, Toolkit

<>p> With Ajax still being a relatively new technology (just over a year old – well, the term is anyway), there are will some power struggles among the larger companies to see who will be king of the hill. Two major players, Eclipse and Microsoft, are competing for this leadership, according to this InformationWeek article. The two have released their own tools to the community in an effort to one-up the other.

In the article, they present the cases for either side – Eclipse’s “Rich Ajax Platform” and Microsoft with the much anticipated release of their toolset, Atlas. The Eclipse group, is closer to reaching their solution – Microsoft’s Atlas won’t actually be released until the next version of Visual Studio is out for public consumption. The Microsoft camp has the advantage of being able to integrate with all of their multitude of applications, but Eclipse has the donated code from IBM to allow for tighter web server integration, with hopes of ultimately leading to easy to generate, more interactive web applications.

Of course, neither is sitting back now that their tools are out. They’re constantly working, improving, and adding new features that will keep the users happy and on their side. You can find out for yourself all of the details around each project from their homepages:

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Posted by Chris Cornutt at 6:52 pm
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I don’t know what is meant by “now that their tools are out.” It seems to me that Eclipse has two different projects, Ajax Toolkit Framework and Rich Ajax Platform. Both of these are in the very early phases and as far as I can tell, there is not one line of code yet.

You said “Microsoft’s Atlas won’t actually be released until the next version of Visual Studio is out for public consumption,” but as far as I can tell, I can download it today from the link you provided.

Comment by Jason Erickson — March 29, 2006

Interesting Finds

Trackback by Jason Haley — March 30, 2006

Just to clarify, there are several different Eclipse efforts that can easily be confused:
Rich Client Platform, which is about building applications which use the Eclipse framework and UI at runtime,
Ajax Toolkit Framework which is now part of the Web Tools Platform Project (source code is on the way) The ATF provides JavaScript and browser utilities as well as a framework to provide tooling for various AJAX toolkits,
and the Rich Ajax Platform proposal from Innoopract which is a Java server-driven framework with its own AJAX runtime

A preview of the AJAX Toolkit Framework (binaries only) can be found at the IBM Alphaworks site.

Comment by Adam Peller — March 30, 2006

But why not Backbase (http://www.backbase.com). Seems way easier to use and more like “one size fits all” in term of platforms…

Comment by Evgenios Skitsanos — March 31, 2006

“Ajax isn’t easy to use. Google learned that as it tried to compose Google Maps and found the shadows under markers on the maps, or the driving lines for directions between two points, displayed differently depending on the browser used.”

The above paragraph, in my opinion, is way off (and InfoWeek is not alone here); AJAX has nothing to do with rendering PNG-based shadows and driving lines. (“No server requests? It ain’t ajax.”) .. This is just good old web development 101 – browsers render stuff differently. Pardon the rant.

Comment by Scott Schiller — March 31, 2006

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