15 Web Services we rely on everyday

  • 15 Web Services We Rely On Every Day – an interesting article blog about 15 key web services used everyday. 

    The list includes:
    Zendesk, GetSatisfaction, SendGrid, MailChimp (my favourite mail manager for newsletters, etc.), Apigee, String, ExpressionEngine, Chartbeat, Mint, PivotalTracker, SalesForce, RightSignature, GotoMeeting, Xero, DropBox, Office Glico.

    These are amongst the best cloud based services out there and I recommend most of them. I may be blogging about individual ones over the next few weeks…

Ajax tutorials and links

Articles

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Tutorials

AJAX: Usable Interactivity with Remote Scripting

AJAX: Usable Interactivity with Remote Scripting
By Cameron Adams
July 13th 2005

If your bookmarks contain even one Web development blog, you’ll undoubtedly know that remote scripting is being touted as the new ‘future of the Web’. Although I get the feeling that a few people are perhaps a little over-excited about it, the recent release of numerous high-profile Web applications that use remote scripting has shown that there are definite advantages to utilising these techniques in the creation of seamless Web applications, and to augment Web page functionality. This article aims to give you an introduction to the foundations of remote scripting, in particular, the emerging XMLHttpRequest protocol. We’ll then walk through an example application that demonstrates how to implement that protocol, while creating a usable interface.

The web article explains how the current flavour on the web is AJAX. AJAX is not really a new technology as such, but a mixture of Javascript and XML. In fact the XML part is optional. It’s a way of updaing a web page without the hassle for the user of the whole page having to be updated and refreshed – only parts of it. This is largely due to the flexibility of the DOM within IE, etc. Manipulating the DOM with Javascript having got a stream of data from a web server is ideal for client pull of data. The server sends the information and the client worries about where to display on the page, without having to refresh the whole web page.

Extreme Programming

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: “Extreme Programming rom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Extreme Programming (XP) is a method or approach to software engineering and the most popular of several agile software development methodologies.

It was formulated by Kent Beck, Ward Cunningham, and Ron Jeffries. Kent Beck wrote the first book on the topic, Extreme programming explained: Embrace change, published in 1999. The second edition of the book, which appeared in 2005, delves more into the philosophy of eXtreme Programming and describes it as being:

  • a mechanism for social change
  • a style of development
  • a path to improvement
  • an attempt to reconcile humanity and productivity
  • a software development discipline

Visual Basic Vs. VB.Net

The big programming debate rages on (if only in my mind). On the one hand you have the might of Microsoft, with it’s army of programmers and industry backing – but some would argue lack of practical day to day programming requirements. They are offering two contenders; Visual Basic and Vb.Net. The dot net stuff is interesting – but behind the scenes just money for programmers and Microsoft (again) re-inventing themselves. Still most people follow suit regardless … BTW if your migrating from VB to VB.NET you need the code advisor for vb6.0.

Then you have the lightweight BUT (some would argue, in the real world) much better products by the small boys. The main contender perhaps being Powerbasic. Grey Matter in the UK sell it for around £114 – it’s well worth the investment, even if it’s just to get a compiler that does not need a runtime environment! Powerbasic is interesting… It creates small, tight, fast code – BUT – it’s not Microsoft. There lies the problem. To back functionality Vs. name.

I’m on the fence with this one. I’ve tried VB for some time (years) and will now try Powerbasic to see how well it copes with day to day, real life programming/business issues. There’s plenty of libraries for Powerbasic ranging from graphics to SQL and database systems – all pretty cheap – but do the job.