Cascade DataHub Uses AJAX to Put Live Data Into Cell Phone Displays

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A new version of the Cascade DataHub sends live, real-time data into web browsers or web-enabled cell phones using the latest AJAX technologies.

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Today's professional wants always-on access to his data

The Cascade DataHub from Cogent Real-Time Systems puts dynamic data into a web page without using .NET programming, ActiveX objects, or Java applets. The Cascade DataHub's new built-in web server uses client-side scripting to update data on a web page in real time. Live trading or financial data from a streaming data source or Excel spreadsheet can be viewed in any web browser, PDA, or cell phone capable of using HTML and Javascript. Wi-Fi enabled devices can even access data without accruing cellular connection charges.

"Today's professional wants always-on access to his data," said Andrew Thomas, president of Cogent Real-Time Systems. "AJAX by itself is a leap forward in web technology, and when you connect it to a real-time data feed through the Cascade DataHub, you get a truly dynamic system."

AJAX stands for Asynchronous Javascript And XML. It is a group of web technologies that use client-side scripting to allow a web server to send and receive data--without having to refresh the page in the browser. Data displays can be updated instantaneously, even by clients running very minimal web browsers. The only requirements for the client side are the ability to support JavaScript and the XMLHttpRequest function call that drives all AJAX applications. This makes AJAX an ideal technology for cell phones and PDAs.

The Cascade DataHub is a memory-resident real-time middleware application that collects data from one or more sources and distributes it to any number of clients. It can connect to an ordinary Excel spreadsheet, allowing it to share data over a network or the Internet with other spreadsheets. Now, with its built-in web server and AJAX, the Cascade DataHub can send data from Excel to a web page on a PC or cell phone, in real time.

"AJAX opens a new window of opportunity for Excel users," said Mr. Thomas. "Now there is a way to leverage a company's resources, and get valuable data from an Excel spreadsheet into the pocket of any trader, investor, or manager who needs it."

In addition to AJAX, the Cascade DataHub's web server can publish live data using Java applets or ASP (Active Server Pages). The web server contains a built-in demo that shows each of these options, featuring real-time data displays for each. The Cascade DataHub can also write data to any ODBC database like MySQL or SQLServer.

Based near Canada's financial capital of Toronto, Cogent is a leading developer of middleware solutions that connect sources and consumers of live data. Customers include the Bank of Canada, Cadbury Chocolate and the European Space Agency. Cogent leverages its knowledge of real-time systems to create data transport models for time-sensitive financial applications.

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ROBERT MCILVRIDE