AJAX Apps -- Cleaner Connections, Less Bandwidth? Maybe Not.

Port80 software and a blog post on AJAX Apps – Cleaner Connections, Less Bandwidth? Maybe Not… re-raises some interesting points on the relative server load increase an ajax application might cause vs. the traditional page-by-page web app. Intuitively you might think that the net amount of data transfer would go down as less redundant data is re-sent for each page. But as this post points out, the use of polling via ajax has the potential to actually greatly increase server load.

Of course this is apples to oranges. Polling itself isn’t new with ajax - it might have been done previously with an iframe and a meta-refresh or a javascript reload. What is new is the relative ease with which increasing sophistication of web apps can be attain using ajax. If the application is doing more work, and the user is getting more value, we shouldn’t begrudge the bandwidth used in getting there.