I have been tinkering with AJAX since shortly after Adaptive Path coined the phrase. Since I made the discovery I have watched dozens of libraries, frameworks and classes develop claiming to be *the* way to develop AJAX powered applications. To be honest I find it all a little overwhelming. Do you use the PHP AJAX libraries to generate the JavaScript for you, or do you use the JavaScript libraries to make the AJAX programming manageable? Answer that question, and then decide between 15 different available tools. Decide on the tool, get a couple days into development and find a limitation. Spend the rest of the afternoon second guessing all previous decisions.

I am about to create a software distribution system for my organization that will replace the need for installation technicians to carry around physical media with them. It will also leapfrog over certain licensing issues related to creating physical media for employees to use on their home machines and dramatically increase the accuracy of license tracking and reporting. I got pretty deep into it doing things the way I usually do, writing everything from scratch, but today I went to look at my code and, well, found myself depressed.

My road out of that depression was to find a new pseudo-framework for developing PHP applications that was AJAX friendly. After much research I think I have come up with an approach, which I will be using in my new application. Everything has to have a name these days, so I will call this pseudo-framework “Services With AJAX and PHP”, or “SWAP”.