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What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is a computer programming language commonly used in web design. It allows programmers to write user-interactive scripts that can make using a website more interactive and user friendly. JavaScript is a popular programming language that can be executed by all types of modern web browsers and often includes client-side scripts to alter content, control the browser, and to interact with with the user.

JavaScript can improve a website by adding or aiding client side interaction. JavaScript programming can enhance a website with user prompts, navigational assistance queues, user choice confirmations, and other interactions and calculations. JavaScript can also allow more sophisticated elements, such as animations, to be included into the design of a website. Because these all occur on the client (or end user) side, and not on the server side, they are often quicker and can occur without having to refresh a web page.

Some advantages of incorporating JavaScript programming into a web page include:

  • the ability for a website to interact with the client/user
  • it is fast: since JavaScript executes on the client side, it often doesn’t have to wait for a server response
  • JavaScript can be integrated with other web programming languages like PHP or Perl
  • the majority of browsers support JavaScript
  • JavaScript can store cookies and other user information needed

Some disadvantages to using JavaScript in web sites include:

  • different users can produce different results (users can have different versions of JavaScript on their machines)
  • JavaScript can be used maliciously because it executes code on the users machine
  • browser support is needed for JavaScript to work
  • since JavaScript relies on the end user, a programmer cannot know if a user has enabled or not … users can disable javascript
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