The Ajaxifiation of Yahoo

    July 20, 2006

Jeffrey Veen, echoing what Mike Arrington said (“Millions of people may have their first interaction with Ajax in the coming days.”), asked Is Ajax ready for prime time?

This feels like a relatively big step in the evolution of what is possible to achieve with web interfaces. Not that these simple interactions and browser-based technologies are particularly new – the effects on the Yahoo! page could have been produced years ago. Rather, it will help a far broader set of people become accustomed to a new set of expectations for the sites they use every day.

Indeed. One thing Yahoo has always been good at is brining new technologies to a mainstream audience. Sometimes we even get it right. :-)

But this has other benefits that hadn’t occurred to me…

Perhaps more interesting, though, is the technological precedent being set. Much like Doug Bowman’s standards-based redesign of Wired News years ago, Ajax at Yahoo may signal to conservative IT managers that it’s finally ok to loosen the reigns a bit. This technology is in the hands of the majority of users. Let’s use it!

Perhaps that means that our internal applications (expense reports, trouble tickets, travel booking, etc.) will start to suck a little bit less? One can only hope. :-)

But the Yahoo! home page isn’t the only place that’s getting some Ajax love. Over on the Yahoo! User Interface blog is a list of Ten Things Yahoo! Is Already Doing with the YUI Library:

Since the YUI Library was released under an open-source BSD licence in February, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about YUI. One of the questions we’ve fielded more than any other, though, is also one of the best and most relevant: Who at Yahoo! is putting this stuff out into production? The answer is that almost everyone at Yahoo! is using YUI to some degree, including some of our most highly trafficked and high-profile sites.

If you’re a web developer and haven’t seen that blog or YUI (offered up as part of the Yahoo! Developer Network), check ’em both out. YUI is really helping to Ajaxify Yahoo! and it’s all packaged up and ready to use on your site(s) too.

See also: Dustin’s article 15 Things You Can Do with Yahoo UI

Jeremy Zawodny is the author of the popular Jeremy Zawodny’s blog. Jeremy is part of the Yahoo search team and frequently posts in the Yahoo! Search blog as well.

Visit Jeremy’s blog: Jeremy Zawodny’s blog.