New Cheatsheet: What’s Ajax?

Into JavaScript? Have I got good news for you!

If you’re interested in JavaScript-driven web apps, snazzy visual fx, and generally confusing people into thinking your site is Flashโ€”but oh-so-much betterโ€”you should buy our JavaScript Performance Rocks! book while it’s still in beta. Written by Thomas Fuchs, the creator of Scriptaculous, and yours truly, the maker of funny jokes and shiny graphics.

We cover everything from The Most Ridiculous Performance Fix Ever (and it is ridiculous), to serving strategies, DOM diets, loop unrolling (for those really extreme cases), how to play nice with the garbage collector, and everything in between. And it comes with our custom profiling tool, The DOM Monster, which analyzes your pages and suggests fixes. This package is only $24 right now but will be $29 as soon as it’s done, in mid-June 2009… but if you snag your copy today, you get the final version by email just as soon as it’s ready and save a noteworthy 5 bux! You can’t lose.

Have I been workin’ hard, or hardly workin’? It’s a good question. Either way, I’ve been hacking away an Ajax chapter for the book. Ajax has been becoming one of my very favorite topics, if for no other reason that there is very little writing out there, so far, which makes it as simple as it really is. Plus it’s just freakin’ cool.


What’s Ajax? (PDF) is my attempt to cut away as much of the Ajax smoke & pixie dust with a single page. As for the theme, I was inspired by the font (Big Bloke BB). Let me know what you think!

Ajax Interface Example

I’ve also created a little example movie of an Ajax interface I got to create at work for Ning. If you’re working on adding some kind of in-line editing to your applications, you might find it useful. I should have typed less since it was a demo movie, but I was going for realism (translation: I wasn’t thinking, and am too lazy to redo it).

Note: The techniques shown in the video are not the same as edit-in-place (EIP). The form is generated by hand-coded Javascript; edit-in-place is somewhat less fancy and it involves less custom work.


What’s Ajax? cheat sheet (PDF)
Ajax photo sharing app interface (MOV)

Links for Cheatsheet

added 10/30/05—thanks, Jamal

Javascript Packages

Firefox Goodies


  1. I think I am in love with you…

    Just kidding, lol! Anyway it’s supa dupa fly! I like it!

    Can’t wait to buy your book!

  2. Well…

    Maybe you could add links to the Ajax Code Packages and Debugging Tools on the right…

    I for one know that I had trouble locating prototype (which is and web developer (which is when I was looking for those…

  3. Amy Hoy says:


    Glad you liked it! I’m sorry about the difficulty in finding the goods. I tried to fit the URLs in, but there just wasn’t room. The trick is to google for how I list them. Google for "prototype.js" and it’ll come up. Or "web developer firefox extension."

    If anyone out there with Acrobat Pro wants to add the links as actual, you know, clickable links, that’d be super duper. I just don’t have the tools for it. (Of course if anyone feels like donating a boxed set of Adobe CS 2 Premium to me, that’d be even more super duper.)

    And I could just put the links here. Duhhh. I’ll do that.

  4. Yahoo! Now it rocks.

    Sorry, I don’t have CS2 either… Maybe we should convince adobe (and macromedia, and activestate, and microsoft, and insert chosen software company name here to price it like that :

    Want to start a lobby? I’m in!

  5. hallo alles aus bremen!

    eine colle web-seite! bravo!


  6. jhone says:

    what’s Ajax ?

  7. i am not sure as to why…

  8. I was very dissapointed of this!

  9. Thanks for the write-up ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. The problem is my browser.

  11. I use Firefox in Ubuntu ๐Ÿ™

  12. Congratulations on a great web site. I am a new computer user and finding you was like coming home. Continued success. Gutto Braigain.

  13. Moisha Breit says:

    Congratulations on a great web site. I am a new computer user and finding you was like coming home. Continued success. Moisha Breit.

  14. i am not sure as to why ๐Ÿ™

  15. Hanz Jocker says:

    Congratulations on a great web site. I am a new computer user and finding you was like coming home. Continued success.

  16. I think it would be usefull for other users also.

  17. Sat B3 says:

    I use Firefox in Ubuntu.

  18. I thout to do it in my local version ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. I was very dissapointed of this ๐Ÿ™

  20. The problem is my browser ๐Ÿ™

  21. Well at last catched the problem…

  22. […] was already advanced enough not to need her “What’s AJAX?” cheatsheet, but it was cool that she’d done such a thing. In fact, she had — and still […]

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