Ajax is not a technology, but a group of technologies. CSS and HTML can be used in combination to mark up and style information. The DOM is accessed with JavaScript to dynamically display – and allow the user to interact with – the information presented. The word Ajax has come to represent a broad group of Web technologies that can be used to execute a Web application that communicates with a server in the background, without snooping with the current state of the page. In the article that coined the term Ajax, Jesse James Garrett explained that the following technologies are incorporated:

  • HTML or XHTML and CSS for presentation.
  • The  DOM for dynamic display of and communication with data.
  • XML or JASON for the exchange of data, and XSTL for its manipulation.

There have been a number of developments in the technologies used in an Ajax application, and in the description of the term Ajax itself. XML is no longer required for data exchange and, therefore, XSLT is no longer mandatory for the manipulation of data.  JSON is often used as an different format for data interchange, although other formats such as preformatted HTML or plain text can also be used. 

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