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HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript

Posted in , , , , , Tue, 06 Jun 2006 01:52:00 GMT

HTML::Prototype is by far the most painless way to get started with AJAX that I've found. Simply put, you do not need to know or write any JavaScript! HTML::Prototype is a Perl module on CPAN that wraps the prototype AJAX library and effects library with Perl helper methods so you don't need to write a single line of JavaScript to get some great effects. There are also a number of modules that wrap HTML::Prototype for integration with Catalyst, CGI::Application, Template Toolkit and others.

There are a number of convenient methods such as link_to_remote() and submit_to_remote() that create a link and form button to make an AJAX call and populate the innerHTML of a specified DOM element with the response body. Syntactic sugar to be sure as the JS generated by HTML::Prototype is very simple once you look at it, but the beauty is that you never have to.

To truly appreciate HTML::Prototype you need to use some of Scriptaculous' more advanced widgets such as autocomplete. Sebastian Riedel put together a screencast using Catalyst that demonstrates how easy it is to use. Links to the screencast are available on the Catalyst wiki movies page:

Another great thing about having HTML::Prototype generate the JS syntax for you is that you can learn prototype syntax just by View Source. I picked up enough of prototype's JS syntax this way that I haven't looked at the docs yet.

I've recently removed HTML::Prototype from a project in favor of using prototype.js and scriptaculous.js directly and I'm evaluating the Dojo Toolkit but HTML::Prototype let me get started with very effective, painless AJAX functionality. I used it with Catalyst::Plugin::Prototype and thought 'this is how frameworks make you productive.' Thanks to all the contributors. - AJAX Without JavaScript digg:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript reddit:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript spurl:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript wists:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript simpy:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript newsvine:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript blinklist:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript furl:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript fark:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript blogmarks:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript Y!:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript smarking:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript magnolia:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript segnalo:HTML::Prototype - AJAX Without JavaScript

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Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method

Posted in , , Wed, 31 May 2006 23:54:00 GMT

Catalyst::View::TT 0.23, the Template Toolkit View for the Catalyst MVC framework, was recently released on May 27, 2006 and just in time. It breaks out the render functionality as a separate method from the process method allowing direct rendering of TT templates in addition to handling the overall catalyst response. This is useful when you want to render a template for say an email body or fragments in a JSON response. The render method is accessed as follows:

my $output = $c->view('TT')->render(
    $c, '', \%args

Prior to this, Catalyst::Plugin::SubRequest was the recommended way for rendering a TT template when C::V::TT was being used, e.g. the email body example in the SubRequest POD. This method is a kludge because SubRequest is designed to make public action requests, not for just rendering a template. I didn't mind using SubRequest just once to render a TT template for email, however I grew concerned when I starting using it multiple times to render HTML fragments to return via JSON. I was converting more private methods to public actions just so they could be called by SubRequest when I decided this was too kludgy and went to see if I could call TT directly. I went code diving in C::V::TT where I found the render method in 0.23 on I had to install 0.23 from the tarball directly since my CPAN shell would only give me 0.22.

SubRequest also seems to have a problem in that it nukes the Catalyst::Request parameters so $c->req->params is no longer populated correctly after a $c->subreq call. This created strange results without errors that were hard to pinpoint for me. On #catalyst, network_ninja mentioned he got around this problem by copying the params to $c->req->parameters and giving that to SubRequest. My solution is to just stop using SubRequest, at least when I only want to render a template.

Thanks to the Cat team for breaking out render and releasing it just when I went looking for it. 0.23 - render method digg:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method reddit:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method spurl:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method wists:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method simpy:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method newsvine:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method blinklist:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method furl:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method fark:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method blogmarks:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method Y!:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method smarking:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method magnolia:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method segnalo:Catalyst::View::TT 0.23 - render method

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