Analyst Hyperbole Of The Day: Go AJAX Or Die

from the oh-please dept

When you go to a supposed expert, such as an analyst, they should help you to cut through the hype -- not puff up the hype even more. Unfortunately, all too often we see that analyst firms are simply a big part of the hype cycle. Take, for example, this article about AJAX technology (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) which is all the rage these days among Web 2.0 companies. A Gartner analyst has now been quoted saying that websites need to use AJAX or they won't get traffic any more. Specifically, he says that sites that don't use AJAX, "will simply not be cool enough to use." This is from someone who is supposedly an expert, who others look to for advice. Obviously the various technologies that make up AJAX can be quite useful, but whatever happened to not focusing on the technology, but what the technology actually does? Sure, some sites are probably going to be better off using AJAX in one way or another, but it really depends on what the application or service is supposed to do. To give a blanket recommendation to use AJAX in all cases doesn't seem particularly analytical -- but does pump up the hype.
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  1. identicon
    Jimmy Bear Pearson, 16 Jun 2006 @ 7:34am

    Article hypes, yes...

    Seriously, it is too much to say that non-AJAX-enabled sites will die off or get no traffic.

    AJAX is a neat technology that is very useful. So are Flash bits, and so are great images. However, each of these page components have their place and purpose. Too much of a good thing tends to be a bad thing, and too little of a good thing tends to make a page bland.

    I do remember the first web pages I ever read - it was the early 90s, and the pages were all text (well, with some big or bold text, but just text). Then came images... and the plain text pages looked, well, plain. Then came animated images, and then came interesting page layouts.

    Fast-forward to the present... When one goes back and looks at a page that is nothing but left-justified text, it often looks un-professional - if TechDirt looked like a Notepad-based document, it would definitely look unprofessional. We have come to expect visual elements, layouts, images, and interactive items. Things that were previously "advanced" items are part of everyday average pages now.

    This is not to say that a page must have tons of widgets - we've all seen the pages with 800 animated gifs, Flash ads, flashing text, and blue text on red background - I'm just saying this:

    The Web, and how we perceive it is evolving. AJAX is a great component to that evolution. Let's use it where appropriate. But... it won't kill a well-done web site/page if it isn't AJAX-enabled.

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