While it is tempting to give users infinite freedom to enter information into a web site, it is usually best to limit their inputs as much as possible. Creating simple HTML-based query generators is not difficult and can even be easy once you get the hang of it. The trick is to formulate queries in such a way that the user can get the maximum information while knowing as little as possible about the underlying database. Even when the queries are easy to create, finding ways to turn those queries into language suitable for non-programmers can be a challenge.
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Pick up any e-commerce web or mobile app today, and you’ll be holding a mashup of interconnected applications and services from a variety of different providers. For instance, when you connect to Amazon’s e-commerce app, cookies, tags and pixels that are monitored by solutions like Exact Target, BazaarVoice, Bing, Shopzilla, Liveramp and Google Tag Manager track every action you take. You’re presented with special offers and coupons based on your viewing and buying patterns. If you find something you want for your birthday, a third party manages your wish list, which you can share through multiple social- media outlets or email to a friend. When you select something to buy, you find yourself presented with similar items as kind suggestions. And when you finally check out, you’re offered the ability to pay with promo codes, gifts cards, PayPal or a variety of credit cards.Get the Guide