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What is AJAX and where do we use it?

Adnan Abbas

AJAX is an acronym for Asynchronous JavaScript and XML. It is a set of web development techniques used to decouple web pages’ data retrieval and presentation layer. As the name suggests, AJAX allows web applications to exchange data with the server asynchronously without interfering in the display and presentation of the web page, which enables dynamic content loading without the need of reloading the entire page.

AJAX allows you to develop fast and dynamic web pages.

How AJAX works

AJAX uses several technologies to serve web pages. It uses HTML and CSS to provide structure and style to information and JavaScript to modify the page and allow the user to interact with the fetched information.

The elements of AJAX

  • XMLHttpRequest (XHR) is a JavaScript object used to interact with servers. It is used in AJAX programming to exchange data with a server asynchronously.
  • CSS and HTML are used to style data.
  • XML is used as the format in which the data is exchanged.
  • JavaScript is used to present and manipulate the information on the page.

Where is AJAX used?

AJAX is used in virtually every modern web application. A familiar example of an AJAX-based web application is Google Suggest. When you type in the Google search, the written words are sent to the server, and suggestions are loaded in the drop-down without reloading the entire page.

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