Dojo has long had great support for JSON through
dojo.toJson(). But with the advent of ECMAScript 5’s
JSON object, and the increased adoption of this API among browsers, there is now a standard API for JSON parsing and serialization. Dojo 1.7 added a module that aligns with this standard API. This enables Dojo to directly pass through parsing and serialization when native support exists. Using the native JSON parser and serialization is much faster, and allows Dojo to leverage the high-speed, in language capabilities. Also, Dojo’s
dojo/json module is based on the feature detection (has() API) system that is integrated with the build system, so it will be possible to leverage the build system to create browser-specific builds (like mobile builds) where this module consumes just a few bytes.
Dojo 1.7 introduces a new JSON module available at
dojo/json. This differs from the legacy
(or “Why JSON Hyper Schema means JSON doesn’t need XML’s namespacing colon cancer”)
I recently posted a proposal for an addition to JSON Schema, called JSON Hyper Schema, for defining the properties of a JSON structure that represent links or references within data structures. This is intended to provide the same linking capabilities of JSON Referencing, but in a much more flexible manner such that schemas can be used to describe link information in existing data structures without requiring a fixed convention. I wanted to exposit one of the further benefits of using this type of schema: satisfying the goals of namespacing in JSON.
Dojo includes several new modules which open up new querying and caching capabilities for Dojo data stores. dojox.data.ClientFilter is available in Dojo 1.2, and provides the ability to cache queries, update the query results and cached queries based on local modifications, and performs sub-queries and sorting on the client-side. The JsonQuery is a new mixin class for Dojo 1.3 that converts Dojo query objects and sort objects to JSONQuery expressions; JSONQuery can be used for delivering complex queries to the server. JsonQueryRestStore is a new module (for Dojo 1.3) that extends the JsonRestStore and combines the ClientFilter and JSONQuery such that any query can be executed on the client or the server automatically based on what data has been locally cached on the client-side, utilizing dojox.json.query to execute queries on the client-side when appropriate.
JSON Schema is a specification for defining the structure of JSON data. JSON Schema provides the definition of contractual type constraints for describing a valid set of values for object style data structures. JSON Schema development is based on the concepts from XML Schema, RelaxNG, and Kwalify, but is a JSON-based format, so it is well suited for JSON-based applications. It is intended to provide validation, documentation, and interaction control. Defining type constraints provides a standardized form of data documentation that can be used for data persistence, form generation, and creating contracts on data used in web services.
Security in Ajax web applications is of growing importance. While the client-server model is very useful for architecting web applications, the web security is model is not client-server, but rather a client-deputy-server model. Understanding this security model is important for building secure web applications, and it is becoming even more important as we build mashups and web applications that utilize cross-site resources.
Non-trivial data often has structures that cannot be well-defined with normal linear, acyclic data descriptions. Data that consists of cycles, many-to-one relationships, and non-local references often requires custom strategies for serialization and transfer of the data over JSON. Dojo 1.2 has added support for JSON referencing with the dojox.json.ref module. This module provides support for several forms of referencing including circular, multiple, inter-message, and lazy referencing using id, path, and combined referencing forms.
NOTE: This post is very out of date. For more up to date information about RESTful JSON in Dojo applications there are a number of more recent tutorials are available, such as the Dojo Store introduction, as well as tutorials demonstrating store-driven grids and trees, among others. You should also take a look at dstore, the next generation Dojo store architecture, for an even more modern take on RESTful JSON. We have a series of tutorials introducing the concepts.
Complex database driven widgets can be utilized with minimal coding effort. RESTful JSON is an increasingly popular database interface, and in later posts we will look at how JsonRestStore can be used with Amazon S3, CouchDB, Persevere, and Ruby on Rails. The JsonRestStore fully implements the Dojo Data read, write, notification, and identity interfaces. Therefore it can be used with any widget that can utilize these data stores including widgets with editing and live auto-updating features.