Programming Tutorials

The History of AJAX

By: Emiley J in Ajax Tutorials on 2007-09-04  

AJAX, which stands for Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, is a web development technique that enables web applications to retrieve data from a server asynchronously without interfering with the display and behavior of the existing web page.

The term "AJAX" was coined by Jesse James Garrett in 2005, in an article titled "AJAX: A New Approach to Web Applications". However, the technology behind AJAX had been in development for several years prior to the coining of the term.

The concept of asynchronously exchanging data between the server and the client was first introduced by Microsoft in the late 1990s as part of their Outlook Web Access product. The XMLHttpRequest (XHR) object, which is the backbone of AJAX, was invented by Microsoft in 1999 as a part of Internet Explorer 5. Later, it was adopted by Mozilla and other browser vendors, and became a standard feature of modern web browsers.

In the early 2000s, several companies, including Google, began to develop web applications that made use of AJAX techniques. The launch of Google Maps in 2005 was a key milestone in the popularization of AJAX. Google Maps demonstrated the power and flexibility of AJAX, and inspired many other developers to adopt the technology.

Today, AJAX is widely used in web development, and has become an integral part of modern web applications. It has also inspired the development of related technologies, such as JSON, which is a lightweight data interchange format used for data exchange between the client and the server.

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