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Javascript Introduction

If you are new to Javascript let me be the first to welcome you to the world of web document programming. Javascript quite literally brings your html and css to life. One can view Javascript as the central nervous system of their web document, HTML as the skeleton, and CSS as the skin and fashion sense of the document.

In this particular guide we will tackle Javascript from the perspective of a webmaster and web application creator, while touching on topics important to game creators, animators, and multimedia programmers. I will assume you are proficient with HTML and CSS as I write this guide.

How It Works

It utilizes the Document Object model to target elements and properties of your web document. It also relies on HTML's event handling features to execute script in your documents in real time without requiring page refresh to alter the page elements. Javascript can run while your page loads, when people interact with something, according to timers you can program, and even when somebody tries to close or navigate away from your page. Javascript can control nearly everything on and about a web page. It handles user interaction, animation, form validation, dynamics, mathematics, and much more. Javascript is also part of what is known as Asynchronous JavaScript and XML(Ajax), which is a method used to make server and database calls behind the scenes and return data without the web document requiring refresh.

Similarity to Other Technologies

Javascript is similar to other scripting languages like C, Java, PHP, Actionscript 3.0 and many other programming technologies. The way that it works with variables, strings, functions, arrays, numbers, and objects is very similar to many technologies that came before it, and for sure many that will come after it. Since Javascript is somewhat similar to PHP and Actionscript 3.0, learning Javascript gives you an instant jump on learning any other type of popular scripting languages geared for the web or otherwise. If you happen to be coming from a programming background already, you will find Javascript to be a familiar walk in the park.

Transmission With Other Technologies

Javascript acts as a conduit of sorts that allows you to tap other technologies right into it. Javascript can tap into HTML and CSS no problem, PHP and Actionscript no sweat, MySQL and XML data transmissions are easy as pie with the myriad of technologies that communicate with Javascript. For instance Javascript cannot talk directly with a MySQL database to get data out of it, so we use Javascript(XMLHttpRequest object) to call on a PHP script that can talk direct to MySQL and transmit the database data straight back to Javascript for us to display in the document or do whatever evaluations upon.

Brief History

A Netscape employee named Brendan Eich created it with the name Mocha in ancient times, then its name was changed to LiveScript, and finally it became labeled Javascript which is now set into stone. The name "Javascript" may seem confusing since there is a programming technology called "Java" in which authors write Java scripts, the two technologies are similar but unrelated.

 

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DevelopPHP.com is a growing educational system packed with video and written material that you can access 24/7 100% free. The focus here in 2014 is spread between five technologies: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP and MySQL. Learn programming theory, database interaction, web design, animation, graphics editing, vector art, 3D modeling, and much more. The educational experience here is a hybrid one offering both high quality video tutorials and code libraries that grow more robust every day. The code libraries are being assembled so that developers can discover all of the building blocks of their favorite languages. The libraries coupled with high quality video tutorials will take you deep down the rabbit hole very quickly. You can also ask questions and get free advice at WebIntersect.com.
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