Chris Shiflett discusses JavaScript and URLs

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Chris Shiflett – a name that is has been far too long since I’ve mentioned here on DevZone – has written a very thought provoking post over on his blog titled “JavaScript and URLs”. If you haven’t been following the latest discussion, new applications (like the new twitter interface) have started using a client-side routing technique called “hashbang” that, according to some, breaks the web. In this post, Chris discusses why he is not a fan of hashbang.

It’s as if a bunch of people got together and decided that the problem with Flash sites is the technology, not the use of it. Everything I used to hate about Flash is back, this time in the form of JavaScript. Like Flash sites, there is a new breed of web apps that don’t feel quite right. Maybe it’s because they scroll like a supertanker. Maybe it’s because the back button doesn’t work right. Maybe it’s because the browser tells you it’s done, but you don’t see any content. (I’m looking at you, Twitter.)

The article is interesting and Chris links to five other articles that discuss the problem in more depth. While I don’t agree with all of his thoughts on Flash, over all I do agree with his thoughts on the hashbang problem. Whether you agree or disagree with Chris on the haashbang problem, this is a well written article. If you aren’t familiar with the problem, Chris’ article si a good starting point and the articles he links to are equally well thought out.

About Cal Evans

Many moons ago, at the tender age of 14, Cal touched his first computer. (We're using the term "computer" loosely here, it was a TRS-80 Model 1) Since then his life has never been the same. He graduated from TRS-80s to Commodores and eventually to IBM PCs.   For the past 10 years, Cal has worked with PHP and MySQL on Linux OSX, and when necessary, Windows. He has built on a variety of projects ranging in size from simple web pages to multi-million dollar web applications. When not banging his head on his monitor, attempting a blood sacrifice to get a particular piece of code working, he enjoys building and managing development teams using his widely imitated but never patented management style of "management by wandering around". Cal is happily married to wife 1.33, the lovely and talented Kathy. Together they have 2 kids who were both bright enough not to pursue a career in IT. Cal blogs at and is the founder and host of Nomad PHP