Chapter 1. A framework apart

This chapter covers

  • A holistic view of Ext JS
  • Learning about what’s new in 3.0
  • Downloading and unpacking the framework source code
  • Exploring an Ajax-based “Hello world” example

Envision a scenario where you’re tasked to develop an application with many of the typical UI (user interface) widgets such as menus, tabs, data grids, dynamic forms, and styled pop-up windows. You want something that allows you to programmatically control the position of widgets, which means it has to have layout controls. You also desire detailed and organized centralized documentation to ease your learning curve with the framework. Finally, this application needs to look mature and go into beta phase as quickly as possible, which means you don’t have a lot of time to toy with HTML and CSS. Before entering the first line of code for the prototype, you need to decide on an approach for developing the frontend. What are your choices?

You do some recon on the common popular libraries on the market and quickly learn that all of them can manipulate the DOM, but only two of them have a mature UI library, YUI (Yahoo! User Interface) and Ext JS.

1.1. Looking at Ext JS

1.2. What you need to know

1.3. A bird’s-eye view of the framework

1.4. New Ext JS 3.0 goodies

1.5. Downloading and configuring

1.6. Take it for a test drive

1.7. Summary