1. Alternate Solutions
  2. Similar Applications and Web 2.0
  3. Google Suggest
  4. AJAX Frameworks
  5. Competitive Chart

Various AJAX frameworks are available that allow development of dynamic websites that, on the surface, look similar to the features offered by QuestFields. For example, an AutoSuggest QuestField has some features in common with the "autocomplete" component in Microsoft's .NET 2.0 "Atlas" libraries.

Although QuestField-enhanced web pages may look similar to websites developed using AJAX frameworks, there are very significant differences:

  1. QuestFields provide a programming-free "end-to-end" solution. This means that there is no redesign of the (existing or new) web pages, nor any server-side programming required to link the QuestField to your standard content sources (RDBMS or directory). This typically results in a much lower investment and thus a much quicker return on investment for our clients.
  2. AJAX frameworks by themselves do not solve any potential server-side performance issues. The QuestFields Server was designed to efficiently handle the "deceptively simple" task of handling potentially thousands of simultaneous user requests querying large databases. A QuestField is highly scaleable out of the box and can be up and running in a matter of hours. Making AJAX solutions as highly scaleable requires quite a bit of custom work.
  3. The QuestFields Server and the QuestObjects Protocol ("QOP") have built-in features for ensuring 24/7 availability, such as automatic fail-over to alternate instances of the database(s) and/or directories.
  4. The AutoSuggest QuestField has a broader feature set than the standard autocomplete component found in AJAX frameworks such as .NET 2.0. Note, for example, that the QuestField has built-in highly efficient scrolling. Also, QuestFields provide in-field feedback, such as a "red squiggly underline" when a user types a non-existing value.
  5. The current QuestField is compatible with a wider range of browsers and operating systems, including those that do not support the XMLHTTPRequest object that is at the center of AJAX implementations, including certain browsers that are still in popular use on the Mac, Linux, and Windows Mobile (Pocket PC) platforms. This makes QuestFields a better option for wide-scale use in ecommerce applications.
  6. QuestFields can communicate from any domain to any domain and are not limited to the "same-domain" restrictions that AJAX implementations have. There is therefore no need for proxies in multi-domain environments.
  7. QuestFields do not impose restrictions on the rest of the HTML page, and work fine in environments and sites that were developed using yesterday's tools, even using non-validated old HTML versions.
  8. QuestFields can be deployed on any website, regardless of the application technology that is used to serve them (ASP.NET, J2EE, ColdFusion, etc.) and regardless of the server operating system (Windows, Linux, Solaris or HP-UX or other UNIX, Mac OS, OpenVMS).
  9. QuestFields provide a proven industrial-strength and high- performance "black box" solution that has been in production for over 18 months with no QuestField-induced downtime whatsoever.
  10. Unlike custom-designed applications built in Atlas, GI, Backbase, other AJAX frameworks, Flash or Java components, QuestFields are reusable components that work in any site. This creates far less future dependance on the application development team.

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