Tag Archives: Javascript

Smart Optimizer

One of the bigger problems I see in the performance space is that a lot of the value of current content management systems and blogging tools is the ability to add widgets or plugins from a lot of different places. These plugins often do not provide compressed and cacheable versions of their content.

In order to get more people to adopt the methods of creating faster web pages, we need to make it easier for them to do so while still a making it easy for them to adhere to performance guidelines. Basically, make it possible for them to eat cat and lose weight at the same time.

I’ve spent part of last evening looking for plugins for WordPress that will find any javascript or css files, combine them into a single file, minify and gzip them, and then set far future expires headers. I’ve got a dream plugin in mind and none of them are quite living up to my fantasy.

One solution that comes close to being my dream is a piece of software called Smart Optimizer. Smart Optimizer used to be called JSmart. It was a project that hadn’t had any updates since July 7, 2006 until two weeks ago when the project was revitalized and the name changed.

Smart Optimizer will:

  • Set up rewrite rules to intercept any calls to css or js files
  • Minify, gzip any css or js files
  • Creates static files on the server for css and js that are gzipped and set for caching
  • Concatenate css or js files into a single file

It’s an interesting tool that I don’t think a lot of people know of. Take a look.

Speed Up Your AJAX With Google AJAX Libraries

Dion Almaer of Google and Ajaxian.com announced late last week the AJAX Libraries API. If you use AJAX, you’ll want to pay attention to this announcement. What does it mean?

Popular AJAX libraries including:

  • jQuery
  • prototype
  • script.aculo.us
  • MooTools
  • dojo

are now being hosted on Google’s servers for use on your site or applications. Why would you link to a file hosted on Google’s server? Because it is optimized for speed by providing the libraries in the following way:

  • Gzipped
  • Minified
  • Far future expires headers to increase caching
  • Delivered using Google’s extensive content delivery network

They are providing multiple versions of each library and even include a javascript loader for the libraries. For more on the benefits of this service, check out Steve Souder’s coverage and Dion’s extensive information on Ajaxian.

If you are using any of these AJAX libraries, you would be foolish not to seriously consider taking advantage of this service.