Some noteworthy Ajax Framework releases have come out in the last few weeks, along with some other news of interest:
- Ext JS 2.1 and Ext GWT 1.0 Beta – Better performance, new Slider, StatusBar components. REST support (support for other HTTP methods beyond POST and GET). The Ext GWT 1.0 Beta consummates the love affair between GWT (Google Web Toolkit) and Ext that was started by gwt-ext and MyGWT, but provides the comfort of knowing that it is supported by the Ext JS folks. Note: Ext GWT is pure GWT, not an Ext JS wrapper.
- Dojo 1.1 – First off, API compatibility between 1.0 and 1.1. Unified timing loop (ala Scriptaculous) for animation effects, with increased performance. Syntactic improvements to dojo.query. Unification of XHR functionality into dojo.xhr() function.
- Backbase Enterprise Ajax 4.2 – Backbase has been in the commercial framework game longer than almost anyone. Among the new features: hierarchical data bindings and improved performance. If you’ve wanted data binding for tree widgets, have a look.
- Google App Engine – it only runs Python apps right now, and it’s a preview release available to a select few, but you can already see that this is Google’s challenge to Amazon’s EC2 compute cloud. In at most a year, unless you are security sensitive — health care, financial services — or running on Windows, you won’t be building and maintaining data centers. The capital requirements for launching sophisticated and scalable online services is about to change.
Lots of exciting developments for Ajax developers and Web 2.0 entrepreneurs. I, for one, can’t wait to see how the Google App Engine compares to EC2 for deploying and scaling Facebook applications.