Javascript: The Age of Interactivity



Big Landscape

Today’s webpage is by far more enriched with content than pages from the early 2000’s.  Webpages then were stale, simple, and boring.  Eventually webpages evolved progressively to allow us to view pictures, and later watch videos.  Later with the implementation of Adobe’s Flash player, the ability of end-user interactivity was added. Insert a robust experience with animations and slides.  User’s were able to play flash-based mini games right on browsers that had Flashplayer plug-in support.

As with anything, there’s a pro and con aspect to it.  With flash player, vulnerabilities were discovered and the support team at Adobe had to work round clock to create patches and updates to promote Flash player’s security and performance.  The fact that Flash player is an Adobe proprietary player, user’s depended on Adobe to create compatible versions for different browsers, and updates for each.  Henceforth the emerging issue of fragmentation of support of the many browsers. Browsers that didn’t have the latest/required version of Flashplayer, or have it at all, the content area would fail all together. Another flaw to using flash is that the content contained in flash isn’t easily indexable, causing a bit of trouble for search engines. This problem also flows over to end-users who need special accessibility features to interpret website data.  Need a fix, here comes JavaScript.

JavaScript is coding that allows many kinds of animations, roll overs, drop down screens, slide transitions, and all kind of state changes, etc to promote user interactivity.  Unlike the fore mentioned, Javascript plays nicely and works well across all platforms. It allows content to be animated and manipulated in a way where it spans the entire web page, instead of being restricted to an area of the webpage.  Even with Javascript turned off, the user can still present content to the user, allowing a site to still be “usable.”  Complemented with CSS, Javascript allows the web developer to write accessibility to the site from the very beginning, promoting an environment where interactivity is native.  The text and content with Javascript is also indexable, allowing seemless collaboration with search engines.   A key element to the discovery of webpages.

I hope this entry helps to you to identify some benefits and uses of Javascript.  For further infomation on Javascript and Flash, feel free to check out these following links for each.

Until next post, stay motivated.




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