Xajax and Vanilla

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A couple weeks ago I read a few posts where the authors discussed what they had accomplished that day. I thought I would do something similar and talk about what is in my IDE each week. Using the term IDE very loosely (for those of you who are super literal).

XAJAX replacement

If you are familiar with XAJAX you know it is an easy way to integrate PHP and AJAX, if you aren’t familiar with it you should go check it out. When I started writing my own framework, I chose to integrate it as a first class citizen. Recently I have been preparing to hang my framework out for others to play with and and realized that XAJAX just wasn’t fitting in anymore, a few of my concerns were:

  • Not conceptually consistent with the rest of the framework.
  • One of just two external dependencies (PHP), my goal being to eliminate all external PHP dependencies from the core of the framework.
  • Not strict PHP 5, they still support PHP 4 with no plans to drop it.

Those were the main reasons for replacing XAJAX, another was that I really wanted to integrate the Javascript side with jQuery since it is the “supported” javascript library for the framework. None of the reasons I’m replacing XAJAX reflect on its capabilities it really does what it does very well. Anyways I estimated a week and have been at it for about 1 1/2 weeks a bit longer than I thought.


I’ve been kicking around an idea for a forum for PHP Bloggers to hang out on, I wanted something super simple ( to keep me from playing with it too much), and was pointed towards vanilla. It has a very clean interface and getting my template to work in it was fairly simple. Simplicity seems to be the overall theme so maybe it will keep me focused on just using it instead of playing with it!

Changing Jobs

I’m in the middle of changing jobs so no time to really do anything extra (fun) for probably another week. I haven’t had time to read anything at all so no Weekly Readers.


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  1. PaulG  May 15, 2008

    Xajax replacement:

    I too am 'evolving' my own dev framework and used Xajax from the start, and had planned to add moo.fx onto the front end, only because I like its small footprint and I have used it successfully before.

    Xajax always seems full of stuff I don't need (maybe because I am not proficient enough to use it all or because I just dont need most of it). Consequently it always feels like bit like Voodoo programming when I use it, but, crikey it just works very very well.

    I am really interested in what you come up with in the way of an Xajax replacement that works with jQuery.


  2. Doug Hill  May 15, 2008

    The xajax replacement is still a work in progress. I definitely understand about the voodoo :). Amazingly though its quite simple to understand whats going on once you dig into the source.


  3. Yvonne  July 31, 2008

    Just checking.

  4. Dan  October 13, 2008

    Did ya die? I liked what you were doing with this blog. Looks like you're MIA now though.

  5. Doug Hill  October 14, 2008

    Yep, I've been super busy and away from writing and programming for a lot longer than I intended. I'm back though with lots of new ideas. Stay tuned.

  6. Ed Robinson  September 27, 2011

    I see this is an old blog post but maybe you are still working on your framework.

    I have used xajax in just about everything web that I do since its first version and couldn't do without it. The project has been at a standstill for some time now but the "beta" of V0.6 is available, is PHP 5 and I find it works fine in my production apps. It drives the entire site at

    I have used some jQuery ajax functionallity and find it cumbersome compared to xajax and a bit limiting but that's MHO.

    I have been working on a framework myself and it uses mostly externals – xajax, jQuery, Smarty, Floatbox and dabl (orm) all of which save me so much time and effort.

    Have read your routing, dispatching, etc articles. Very nice.


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