Building a Web Site with Ajax

Author: Larry Ullman
Publisher: Peachpit Press, 2007
Pages: 176
ISBN: 978-0321524416
Aimed at: Novice web developers
Rating: 4
Pros: Clear guidance for the beginner
Cons: Narrow focus and limited scope
Reviewed by: Mike James

Ajax stands for Asynchronous Javascript And XML and is currently a hot topic. What the title doesn’t mention is that Larry Ullman’s latest book concentrates heavily on using PHP and MySQL and if you are not using them the value of the book drops to zero. If you are using them or thinking about using them then this slow paced and very clear step-by-step guide will make you understand how the whole technology works – including the usually ignored problem of dealing with the server side of the problem. It’s a slim book and with the use of big print and lots of illustrations it doesn’t go very far. However, if you have been trying to come to grips with what all the fuss about Ajax is due to then it’s a great start. It takes you through a simple example that involves getting some data from the server and displaying it in a form using Ajax techniques to create a responsive program. The example may be narrow but it’s the core of all other Ajax applications and it’s just a matter of customising and extending it. If you are a beginner then this book will get you started.