The DIV_SRC Tool
Overview of the DIV_SRC Tool
The DIV_SRC tool provides web publishers with another way to deliver dynamic content to browsers. It is most appropriate when sections of a page remain unchanged over a period of time, perhaps moving from one place to another within the page. For example, news feed websites such as BBC News, CNN.com or Slashdot.org add new articles to their pages periodically, generally near the top. As they do so, older articles get pushed down the page, eventually migrating off the front page to "yesterday" or "archive" pages. Folk who visit websites like this one or more times a day are likely to see some articles several times over. Each time they visit, their browsers have to fetch the text of every one of these articles again. Given that much of the content may not have changed, just moved, this is a waste of time and bandwidth.
DIV_SRC allows web developers to divide HTML pages into a number of sections, which we can call "pagelets".
These are removed from the base page, and each is stored as a separate small file on the originating web server.
They are not a part of the base page; instead, they are included where needed in the base page by
The benefit that DIV_SRC can confer on news feed web sites is a potentially large reduction in the amount of dynamic content that must fetched from the web server that holds the original content, and hence a reduction in response times and bandwidth utilisation. There is a mock-up of a news feed in the demos section that shows a potential saving of over 90% in bandwidth utilization for the web server.
If this approach sounds strange, bear in mind that we have been doing it for images ever since they were introduced into
web pages in the early 1990s, and we still do so today.
© Trevor Turton, http://turton.co.za, 2008-10-12