Thursday, August 25, 2005

AJAX: Its everywhere

If I had to pick one technology(techniques to be more accurate) that sparkled in 2005, it would be AJAX. Earlier this year, when I started to hear the buzzwords about AJAX, my first reactions were quite unique.
the first reaction was of disbelief: It can't be that simple??. And it got worse..... "You mean Javascript !!". What?. "ActiveXObject" No way.... AND THEN...... XML; That feels better. Asynchronous; Now you're talking!

We had used many of the concepts, effects and features that came to be known as AJAX. It was just that the usage was quite unorganized, almost forced, as Architects, designers, and developers alike; agreed that the techniques were not the most elegent.

So what are the advantages to the industry, now that the term AJAX is coined.

For starters, Javascript developers can suddenly ask for a big raise.

Here is my top 5 list of the advantages of the AJAX momentum:

1. The biggest advantage of the AJAX momentum is frameworks that support and extend Rich UI applications. Some existing frameworks in the market include:
The Dojo Toolkit, JSON-RPC, and Prototype are pure Javascript frameworks.

The second class of frameworks include a combination of Client and Server implementation. These includes Ajax.NET, SAJAX and DWR (Direct Web Remoting).
They allow you to map JavaScript methods to serverside objects.

2. User interface for Web Based applications will never be the same. Expect to see flexible and extensive user interfaces for both Internet, and more importantly Extranet Applications.

3. Support from the Browser makers: With such a strong momentum, browsers will focus on providing even better support for Rich UI clients.

4. Innovation: Expect the next wave of web based applications to include some powerful features. Try typing any word on and check the hints offered by the application.

5. Enterprise application development: This is such as big boost for enterprse applications to make the browser as the predominant application Interface medium.

Thank you AJAX... We needed you...

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Rules of Creative thinking

Here are some key tips that can help in developing that "out of the box" thinking, and generating new ideas:

- Remove all boundaries: Start by removing all boundries from a Solution, and think of A Ideal solution. It might not work, but will give some learning on what direction to take next.
- Work in Spurts: Put some dedicated time to a problem, and focus just on that. Spen 60-90 minutes and generate as many ideas as possible. Then Categorize those ideas into structured categories.
- Give me a break: Sometimes a problem entagles you with such force, that the solution seems impossible. At this point, just call it a day. Next morning, the solution will not seem that difficult.
- Inspiration by nature: This is a key one. Corelate the problem at hand with natural processes. They offer some most simple, yet most powerful lessons. The flow of water, breathing patterns, the need to sleep, the strength of trees,... Are we taking process innovation?
Stay tuned to get some innovative work that uses these elements...