Building Responsive Web Applications
If you have read a few basic Ajax books, you may have found them all covering the same examples of reading and writing text and XML as well as performing drag and drop etc. ‘Ajax and PHP’ takes Ajax a step further by showing you how to use more PHP with Ajax and also use the MySQL database with PHP and Ajax.
‘Ajax and PHP’ starts by discussing the basics of Ajax and how it works together with PHP. The book then takes you through some basic examples of getting Ajax working with PHP. The following chapters go even further by discussing how to get results from the MySQL database via Ajax.
The code examples are very good, sometimes the code goes on for pages and pages, but straight after the code, there are brilliant explanations of what each part of the code is doing.
The remaining chapters of the book cover topics that you would use in many web applications. This includes using Ajax to allow real time form validation, and how to write an Ajax internet chat application as well as an Ajax suggest and autocomplete program like the one that Google uses at Google Suggest. There is also a chapter on creating real-time graphs and charts using SVG – Scalable Vector Graphics.
One really useful application is the Ajax grid which allows you to display data from a MySQL in a table on a web page, but the grid allows you to re-order the columns and even edit the rows of data in real time and update the corresponding data on the MySQL table. This example also uses XSL and XSLT to do the job.
There is also a chapter which gets you to create your own RSS reader using Ajax. The final chapter covers drag and drop using Ajax, the drag and drop example is usually demonstrated on a shopping cart example but this time the chapter uses drag and drop in a task management program which gets its data from MySQL and also updates the database tables once you have dragged and dropped.
The appendix of ‘Ajax and PHP’ takes you through installing PHP, Apache and MySQL on both Windows and Linux.
Overall ‘Ajax and PHP’ is a good book with some great programming examples that you can use in your web projects, plus it is nice to see PHP and MySQL being used together with Ajax in a book, as I’m sure a lot of people will want to use PHP and MySQL with Ajax.