Every book tells a story—even a book about web programming. This story begins in the summer of 2005, at the Professional Developer Conference (PDC) in Los Angeles. It was there that Microsoft gave us our first preview of Atlas, the original codename for ASP.NET AJAX. Excited about its promise, we immediately jumped at the opportunity to play around with the young and evolving framework. In the beginning (and we still do this today), we flocked to the forums, blogs, and user groups to learn, and in the process shape, the latest technology.

When Manning approached us about collaborating on this book, it seemed like a natural progression, considering all the time we had invested in learning about the framework. Our goal was to provide ...

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