Who is afraid of ADC? - Introduction to AJAX Data Controls - Part I
ADC stands for AJAX Data Controls. It is one remarkable set of script data controls built with the Microsoft AJAX library. Emulting the enormously powerful and popular suite of ASP .net data binding controls of gridview, datalist and repeater, ADC offers the same data binding capacity and representational forms. The set of ADC controls include four players: gridview, datalist, repeater and pager. While with "orthodox" (for lack of a better word) asp .net data controls, paging is set as part of of properties, with "maverick" ADC, pager is created as a control itself and is to used in conjunction with other controls: gridview, datalist and repeater.
A little comparison between ADC set and asp .net data control set.
Similarities are abound between the two, because ADCs are developed with its server side precedessor in mind and aimed to replicate all of their server-side goodies without postbacks.
- Similar interface, be it gridview rendered as table, or datalist rendered as list of data items, or repeater offered as more free-styling template
- Dynamic data binding.
- Built in sorting and paging (with pager control).
- Built in in-row editing and deleting.
- Similar events, such as rowCreated event, rowDataBound event, dataBind event
- Similar property setting. For example, ADC gridview supports item templating, styling for header, datarow, alternative data, footer.
- ADC gridviews supports a variety of data columns, such as button columns, checkbox columns, dropdownlist columns; Repeaters affords you the complete freedom for your template design.
The biggest differences are the developing approaches.
ASP .net data controls can bind with a number of ADO .net data objects, such as DataSet, DataTable, DataReader. ADCs mostly take a web service as its data endpoint. The kind of web service can be furnished with XML, JSON. It can also be DataTable returned by a webmethod and serialized by JSON serializing converter. Data can also be directly load from a web page.
In addition to the functionalities provided by ASP .net data controls, ADCs also provides:
- a bit of animation during the process of databinding
- Gridview columns drag and drop, datalist data items drag and drop
- ADC controls are also equipped with a set of accessories packaged in ACT folder, it contains water-marked edit text box, calendar for date controls, modal pop ups, DropShadowBehavior, popup behaviors, etc. They can be used together with ADC controls or with other controls for animation, drag and drop, or anything you have in mind.
In short, among the numerious controls and components that mushroomed out after the overnight of AJAX rain, ADC controls truely stand out for its comprehensive functionalities and representional forms, for its nearly flawless execution, and its incorporation of many technologies and controls of the AJAX libraries.
Download ADC - AJAC Data Controls here.