Saturday, April 1st, 2006
>Office apps and Ajax portals are a bit ’05. What’s really hot right now is the growing trend towards Safety-Critical Ajax. Many were reasonably cautious about this concept when Ajax first burst onto the scene, but several readers have recently submitted stories suggesting there’s now a greater acceptance of Ajax for more delicate application domains. We thought we might share some of the reports with you today.
- Logistics management for one of the world’s busiest airports has “had it up to here with sending out CD-ROMs to each of our twenty-seven control towers every time we roll out the tiniest software upgrade”. Instead, the insider reports, “we’re going to wipe out all that 20th century desktop stuff and replace the whole thing with a stable Firefox installation. Not only will we save on upgrades, but we’ll be able to mashup our coordinate data with Google Maps. Some of the geekier staff members have also expressed an interest in enhancing the app with their own Greasemonkey scripts, or maybe even running it under Safari instead. It’s Ajax after all!”.
- A Danish shipping company recently began construction on a passenger cruise ship to be controlled entirely by a remote web browser. “It was difficult to do this before because all the page refreshes gave the skipper a poor understanding of where the ship was headed. I guess no-one bothered to look into the XMLHttpRequest API … (B)ut what we’ve now found is that Ajax will give the captain a smooth experience which means they’re always in control (except for those hairy moments when the network decides to do its own thing, but the telco has reliably informed us that won’t happen again). We’ve used Flash for some cool sound effects as well, but the main interaction it’s pretty much all standards-based Ajax stuff.”. Thanks to this innovation, the company will be able to save loads of cash by offshoring its entire navigation effort, with budget-rate skippers located in several distinct timezones running the ship from their living rooms with whatever browser they fancy. Being a privately-held company, there’s always the possibility of a “float” and we understand directors are pleased they’ll be able to claim there’s a hint of Web 2.0 in the offing.
We should have seen this coming. The writing was already on the wall six months ago with the SecretGeek exclusive: AJAX website allows surgeons to work from home:
A stunning new website, based on something called ‘AJAX’ — that darling technology that’s taken the world by storm — allows surgeons to give real time instructions to a robotic scalpel, via the internet.
CEO of Ajax The Slasher, David Hassaminor Hickup, said “We knew from the outset that AJAX would cure cancer. This is just the first step. Tomorrow’s children will be concieved via AJAX technology. We are working on an AJAX-enabled satellite with which we hope to probe the deepest corners of the galaxy, in search of the meaning of life. AJAX is bound to have a part to play in that quest. Our main task for now is getting the ‘back button’ to work during surgery. It seems intuitively obvious that pressing the back button will cause the last stroke of the scalpel to be undone. In practice, it’s a little harder than that.