JavaScript Libraries That Mr. Miyagi Would Recommend

JavaScript Libraries, at times or most often, can make a huge difference when developing web applications using JavaScript. Perhaps you have heard about the DRY (Do not Repeat Yourself) rule and you will agree that if someone has already invested their valuable time solving a problem, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. So, just give credit to those people who have worked so hard, banged their heads on walls while trying to fix bugs so that you and I won’t have to and enjoy the JavaScript Libraries at your disposal. Let us take a look at my favorite five (FF).

javascript libraries

There are, without doubt, many JavaScript Libraries out there but I will only look at the famous ones that I like – and this doesn’t mean I hate the others since I have not tried them and you cannot hate something you don’t know anything about. ūüôā

Top 5 JavaScript Libraries To Try Out

1) JQUERY¬†–¬†This might be the most famous JavaScript Library out there today and I am sorry to say this; that if you have never heard about jQuery and you have been using JavaScript, you probably live under a rock somewhere. jQuery was the first library that highlighted the power of¬†method chaining¬†. Suffice to say, it is well encapsulated and guaranteed to work well with other JavaScript Libraries using its own¬†jQuery¬†namespace.

It offers a dollar ($) sign function that maps to an internal method. If you are using jQuery with other libraries like Prototype that makes use of the $ sign, you can easily turn it off in jQuery to avoid the conflict.

2) PROTOTYPE–¬†This was one of the first libraries to gain widespread popularity and helped popularize many of the JavaScript techniques used today! One of the reasons for Prototype’s popularity is the way it makes things much easier, including the infamous dollar sign ($) function you now see in¬†jQuery.¬†By using the $ sign function, methods are automatically attached to the returned DOM element, adding a lot more power to what you can do with an element. Recent iterations of this JavaScript Library have improved on method chaining, making it a formidable tool.

When it comes to building web applications Рespecially AJAX-driven ones, Prototype is a solid solution.

3) DOJO РThis is a large library focused on easing the web application development process by having widgets and other interface elements easily dropped into any project. This JavaScript Library covers all three of the key areas that JavaScript Libraries attempt to address: it smoothes the rough terrain of working with the DOM, it includes many application conveniences, and it includes many prebuilt widgets. Here is a short description from the site:

Dojo saves you time and scales with your development process, using web standards as its platform. It’s the toolkit experienced developers turn to for building high quality desktop and mobile web applications.

4)¬†YAHOO UI (YUI)¬†– Yeah, this is a big gun backed by the big boys over at Yahoo! If you have visited Yahoo! websites – and I suspect you have, you ¬†might have interacted with some of it in use. It is very well designed and extremely robust. The difference between this JavaScript Library and other libraries is that it takes a more traditional approach to library design – each method is simply a function call that takes a number of parameters. You also don’t get method chaining like in¬†jQuery¬†or the conveniences of many of the functions within¬†Prototype¬†library.

What you do get however is a well-thought-out library and prebuilt functionality that goes beyond many of the JavaScript libraries you have seen so far. It is worth mentioning the fact that YUI is heavily namespaced. So there is the main YAHOO object; then everything branches off from there. It is also mainly focused on solving the DOM problems.

5)  MOOTOOLS РYou see, if you are asking yourself why they named it Mootools, I am too! Sounds like the sound made my a cow except in Asian countries :). Anyway, that is not important. This library is relatively newer compared to what we have seen so far. It originally started as Moo.fx , which was an effects library built on top of the Prototype library. The developers behind it felt they had an opportunity to build  compact and modular library. One of the major benefits of Mootools  is the download configurator which enables you to select which modules of the library you want.

That is not all. You can also choose the level of compression that should be performed. All the dependencies between the modules are determined automatically. Awesome huh?  You can visit the link above to find out more about this library.

Summary of JavaScript Libraries

In general, there are so many JavaScript libraries out there and more are added each day. This is a very small list to say the least (hey that rhymed)! I only shared these because I had interest in them. So, if you have some more, please add to the comments section!

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Written By Elisha Chirchir

Elisha Chirchir is a software developer. He is also the founder of Simple Developer and co-founder of Instinctive Software Solutions. On any given day, he works on both Android and Web Development. During his 'free time', he offers training to those interested in learning how to code in php, java, python, javaScript etc. You can easily find him on StackOverflow Android chatroom or on Twitter @Eenvincible

2 Comments on “JavaScript Libraries That Mr. Miyagi Would Recommend

  1. Dmitriy Reply

    September 19, 2013 at 10:40

    ROTOTYPE – typo

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