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By | Phil Manchester 28th March 2008 06:02

Open AJAX frameworks not fit for 'power users'

AIR and Silverlight better, says analyst

In a sudden about turn, analysts at Forrester Research have decided AJAX technology is not the best solution to rich Internet applications after all.

In a report, Forrester has recommended businesses should resort to vendor-specific platforms such as Adobe Systems' AIR and Microsoft's Silverlight because AJAX can't deliver the performance demanded by so-called "power users".

The recommendation seems odd given that only a month ago, Jeffrey Hammond, one of the co-authors of the report, asserted in an article that AJAX was "the best bet for experienced development shops" and can offer plenty of performance.

"AJAX can deliver speedy performance. Vendors of commercial AJAX frameworks like Backbase and JackBe invest considerable resources tuning their AJAX frameworks for speed because their clients have tiny footprints and download to browsers so quickly that there's no perceptible lag in app performance," he wrote.

Hammond's article is actually a re-iteration of a case he originally put forward in an earlier Forrester report published in December 2006 - part of a generally supportive stance on AJAX by Forrester.

The distinction between "open" AJAX frameworks and vendor alternatives is probably going to be irrelevant fairly soon given that Microsoft has become progressively more open since it joined the OpenAjax Alliance last year and Adobe has been loosening its grip on AIR and Flex.®

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