AJAX and me

My manager asked me today if I’ve heard of Ajax. Ofcourse, it’s a Dutch football club, Ajax Amsterdam. Sorry, wrong answer. AJAX is Asynchronous Java and XML. Who would have thought of that! Point I’m making? Well, the technology around me is progressing rapidly and I’m still exactly where I was 4 years back when I graduated as an Electrical Engineer (surprise!! and you thought I was a software engineer eh?).

This small conversation kinda freaked me out. I’ve been meaning to do a lot of learning (atleast reading) but you know what’s the maximum I do? I subscribe to things like the Sun Developer Network newsletters and when I get those emails in my inbox, I select them all and use a beautiful option offered by Yahoo – ‘Mark as read’. C’mon guys, I am trying, am I not? Today I just mark them as read, tomorrow I might actually open them – you never know, I’m like that.

I googled (yep, that’s a valid word these days, like email) a bit for AJAX and found a lot of things to read. Which is not very good, is it? Now to be able to understand AJAX, there are a trillion other things I need to be familiar with. Which again, is not very encouraging. Most articles just ricocheted off my brains (the last I checked my brain was not made of metal, I don’t know why this happened) so I modified my google search – I searched for ‘AJAX for beginners’ (I would be a fish out of water if it weren’t for God Google). I got a lot of hits again – and I went to the one that was in English. Just plain everyday english. And I started to read (believe it or not!). BTW, this article is a good one for dummies like me – check it out: http://www.webreference.com/programming/javascript/jf/column12/index.html

I’ve read a bit now. Understood enough to make me feel less guilty about being AJAX-illiterate. Like my manager said, now if someone asks me about AJAX, I can confidently say it stands for Asynchronous Java and XML (if the person really asked about the football club, well, tough luck!). But then life isn’t very fair, is it? Just heard that Data Warehousing is a hot technology right now and guess what? I don’t know Data Warehousing. Yet. Google, here I come!

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