HTML5 WebSockets - Presented by Scott Mattocks

This was the first talk I went to at ZendCon. The provided description:

The emergence of HTML 5 and related technologies opens up a new world of possibilities for web applications. Among those new technologies are WebSockets, which allow for bi-directional communication between the browser and the server. This session will introduce WebSockets by exploring a few practical applications before diving into the JavaScript API and the WebSocket communication protocol.

What I gained most from the talk was when he talked about websockets. In a gross generalization, they can be used to replace some common applications of ajax communication between the server and the client. Instead of using long polling in a web application, which has unnecessary overhead when sending small bits of data, using a web socket connection for the communication is a better solution.

Web socket communication requires work on both the server side and client side to enable the two way communication.

On the client side, like ajax, it relies heavily on javascript. Processes information in a similar fashion to AJAX. Web sockets at it's heart is about the communication of data between the server and client. There's some work on the client side to allow the setting up and maintaining of the connection, but really less than with a long polling ajax setup.

On the server side it's a little bit more work. The original request for a connection is sent over the standard http port for the site. Then the web socket server will respond with the port to set the connection up with the web socket server.

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