TDI

One script to rule them all, one AJAX to bind them.

TDI brings a unified approach allowing server applications to control dynamic updates of client HMTL pages. It is an AJAX library which

  • automatically processes user actions (link clicks, form submissions),
  • defines a standardized protocol to communicate with a server,
  • automatically executes server instructions and updates the page DOM accordingly.

TDI moves the decision of what to modify from client to server, because the server has all the necessary data. After receiving the AJAX request, the server

  • processes the desired action,
  • creates a list of instructions on how to modify the client page.

To put it short, if you use TDI, there is a high chance it will become the only script for updating your pages.

Interested? You are welcome to continue to our short TDI tutorial.

Why TDI?

Historically, web applications were based on a strict request-response paradigm. The client sends actions and possibly some data, the server responds with a whole HTML page reflecting the new state. With so-called Web 2.0, the pages became more dynamic and many user actions are now processed with client-side scripts. Pages are not reloaded as a whole anymore but partial updates to their DOM are made as necessary.

However, the client JavaScript typically needs some server-based data to display them in appropriate places. To fetch such data, additional requests (sometimes called micro-requests) have to be sent to the server. This often increases the client-server communication. Even if all data are wrapped into a single response, it still leads to error-prone JavaScript that is responsible for filling that data to various places.

TDI (Turbocharged DOM Infusion) brings a novel approach which is a sort of compromise between the old plain request-response paradigm and individual micro-requests. With TDI, user actions are still sent to the server in one request. The server performs the action and then it decides what portions of the page should be updated and how. These updates are embedded into one XML response containing fragments of HTML. It is supposed that these fragments are generated by the very same templates as the original page.

As a result, TDI allows you to have just one concise piece of JavaScript at the client side. The rest of your application logic stays with the server where it belongs.

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