to Ajax has also brought attention
to rich Web applications, which will
help vendors using other development
approaches, Garrett said.
According to Norbye, better
browsers, tools, and network performance
will improve Ajax’s capabilities
in the future.
Ajax could find various uses. For
example, vendors could use it to build
Web-based versions of desktop applications.
This way, companies could
make software widely available to
employees via a network and thus
avoid spending the time and money
required to install applications on
every computer. Ajax also could be
useful for the growing number of Web
applications for mobile devices.
However, predicted Root, while Ajax
may prove interesting to developers
now, they may turn to versions of Flash
and other technologies in the future
because, for example, Flash supports
audio, video, advanced vector graphics,
and other capabilities that Ajax
can’t offer.
Because they find it useful, companies
will create more Ajax-based
applications in the near future,
predicted Kevin Lynch, Macromedia’s
chief software architect.
“We’re now entering a period of
experimentation,” said Adaptive Path’s
Garrett. “A lot of people in the past
six months became aware of the possibilities
that Ajax opens up for them.
Developers are pushing at the boundaries
of what they can do with it.”
Ajax will do well as long as it is competitive
with other approaches. For
example, Google’s Taylor said, his
company will use Ajax as long as it
likes what the technology offers. He
explained, “We will use whatever technology
platform provides the richest
user experience possible.”


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