contains a total of 10 chapters. Chapter 1 gives a brief introduction about Web
portals. It explains some pre-requisites for a website to be called a web 2.0
portal. This chapter provides a brief overview of what an AJAX web portal can
do and what technologies are involved in making such a web site.
chapter narrates the architecture of a web portal and widgets. It is in this
chapter the author explains how to build a widget, which is a primary building
block of a web 2.0 portal. Another beauty of this chapter is that, apart from
just explaining how to build a widget control, lots of explanation is charted about
how to make that widget control perform better during the first visit by any
user and the second visit by the same user. This chapter also compares the
differences between server-side rendering and client-side rendering with
examples. Finally, the chapter ends with a discussion about how to prevent Denial
of Service attacks to a web site.
One of the key
features of any web 2.0 portals is the drag and drop of widgets. In another
words, the ability for the user to arrange the widgets in their home page by
dragging and dropping the widget control. The third chapter contains some
useful information regarding how to create a custom drag-and-drop extender.
This chapter has a nice example regarding how to build a Flickr Photo Widget
control. Chapter three concludes with a useful example about how to write a
logout handler. Omar has explained why handlers are better than a regular .aspx
page, which is worth a read.
Chapter four is entitled,
“Building the Data and Business Layers Using .NET 3.5.” It would have been
titled better, if they would have added “WF and LINQ” at the end. This chapter
is totally based on how the data and business layers were built for the Dropthings
portal. Chapter 5 explains how to create a LINQ to SQL class. If you want to
know how to create a business layer using Windows Workflow foundation, you must
read this chapter. Apart from learning how to make use of the Windows Workflow
Foundation, you will also learn the advantages of using WF.
If your Server
side widgets offer poor performance, you might want to take a look at how to
create a client side Widget. Chapter 5 is all about building client side
widgets. This is a very short chapter, but includes two well crafted examples, building
a client side RSS Widget and a client side Flickr widget.
AJAX Frameworks don’t solve all real-life problems, and new and unique
challenges always come up every now and then. This chapter reviews several
challengers posted by AJAX applications that must be resolved for high volume AJAX web sites.” That was the quote taken from the introduction of chapter 6. This chapter
brings out many real time issues faced by the author while working with AJAX calls. Some examples include the advantages of combining multiple AJAX calls into one
call, and timing and ordering AJAX calls to the server. I learned an important
aspect from this chapter regarding the advantages of using HTTP GET calls as
opposed to HTTP POST calls.
illuminates the scalability challenger with Web Services. It further comments
on how to modify the ASP.NET AJAX Framework to handle web service calls. If you
want to know how to build your own web service handler which supports
transactions, then chapter has a nice example and an in-depth analysis
regarding how to achieve those.
The next two
chapters talks about improving the performance of the web 2.0 portal. While chapter
8 explains improving the server side performance, chapter 9 discloses how to
improve the client side performance. Again, many examples are being provided about
how to handle the performance issues in real time.
deciphers solving common deployment, hosting and production challenges that any
web site might face. This is not for web 2.0 portal, but for any web site. Omar
annotates his experience during the early phases of Pageflakes and the issues
they faced. This chapter is a valuable one for anybody who cares how to run a
website smoothly. Omar points out around thirteen production disasters that
could happen to any website. Well, all these discussions are based on actual
issues that Omar and his team faced while developing the Pageflakes website.
And most important, the discussion includes the solution for all the issues
that they faced.
Grab this book
if you want to develop a web 2.0 portal today. You will get enormous
information regarding not only how to build a web 2.0 portal, but how to solve
some of the common issues that will show up during building a web site.