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Chapter 26. Introduction to Dynamic Drea... > Dynamic Web Sites and How They Work

Dynamic Web Sites and How They Work

More and more as the web develops, increasingly complex data processing needs require more than just static, or hard-coded, pages. You want your visitors to be able to ask questions, place orders, get results immediately. You need absolutely current information posted at all times, without having behind-the-scenes humans constantly updating and uploading pages. In other words, you need web pages that can be generated and updated automatically, calling information as needed from a central source such as a database, and updating that source as visitors buy things, add their names to lists, and sign in and out. You need data-driven web sites.

Dynamic Versus Static Web Pages

A static web page is one that’s completely created in advance, with all text and images in place, and housed on a web server to await a visitor coming to look at it. A dynamic web page, by contrast, contains placeholders for content that will be inserted by the server at the moment a visitor requests the page—at “runtime”—along with instructions to the server on how to construct the completed page. A look at how web pages are processed between the server and the browser will show you how this works.


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