The discovery and further exploitation of the
XMLHTTPRequest object (
xhr) leads to single-page style web apps such as Gmail wherein the user can do just about everything the app offers within that single webpage without refreshing the browser. The idea of a UI where several portions of an application can be mashed up into draggable panes is not totally new to web ninjas; the JSR 258, which is called portlet specification, is an enterprise scale attempt at dashboards.
However, the rich UI toolkits of today, XHR in the modern browser and Web2.x communication systems (JSON, JSONP, GWT RPC, Comet, WebSockets, and so on) all combine to make building dash boards (Portal/Portlets) less painful and more fun.
Consider having to build ...