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Using Google`s Ajax Libraries API

Google's new client-side API lets you download some of the most popular JavaScript libraries directly from its servers. If you're interested in dabbling with AJAX, there is no faster way to get your packages and get started. This four-part article series, of which this is the first part, will help get you on your way.

  1. Using Google`s Ajax Libraries API
  2. Building a simple Ajax application using a local copy of the Prototype JavaScript library
  3. Using Google’s JavaScript Libraries API
  4. Versioning with the Google API
By: Alejandro Gervasio
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January 05, 2009

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Without a doubt, the Web is in constant evolution, and this concept isn’t a simple cliché. It’s a fact that brings new challenges to both users and developers. Of course, when it comes to talking about the big contenders of this fast-changing scenario, Google immediately comes to mind (for good or ill), since the search company continues to introduce additional services, particularly in the area of web development.

As you may have heard, in the last few months, Google has released a new client-side API. It permits users to download some popular JavaScript libraries directly from its servers, including Prototype, jQuery, Scriptaculous, MooTools, and Dojo. In addition, the API will serve the requested files compressed by default (even though this feature can be disabled via client-side scripting), in this manner decreasing their respective download times.

Naturally, many web developers may find it pretty appealing to use this API, since in theory it allows you to download a specific JavaScript package much faster. On the other hand, there’s the fact that Google might collect information each time a JavaScript library is downloaded from a particular location, something that might not be so appealing to a certain number of web developers.

Anyway, I don't intend to discuss the pros and cons of using Google’s Ajax libraries API, since the subject is actually beyond the scope of this group of articles. Instead, I’d like to teach you how to use this API, just in case you want to decide to download your favorite JavaScript library straight from Google’s servers.

Thus, in this series of tutorials, I’ll be taking a close look at the methods offered by Google's Ajax Libraries API, so you can quickly start using them when developing your own JavaScript applications.

Are you ready to tackle the first chapter of this educational journey? Then, let’s get started now!

>>> More AJAX & Prototype Articles          >>> More By Alejandro Gervasio

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