Here is a definition I found on Wikipedia.
A content delivery network is a system of computers containing copies of data, placed at various points in a network so as to maximize bandwidth for access to the data from clients throughout the network. A client accesses a copy of the data near to the client, as opposed to all clients accessing the same central server so as to avoid bottleneck near that server.
Using the CDN will improve the performance of your webapplication in several ways:
- The number of networkhops gets reduced.
- The load on your own webserver gets smaller.
How to use
If you use the Scriptloader you only need to reference to one script on the CDN. It will automatically download the other scripts from the CDN.
Click here for the full CDN directory listing.
More facts and pretty graphs
As I mentioned in this post, this free e-book shows you how ASP.NET Ajax 4 can make your webapplications faster. There's a whole chapter on the CDN in there.