comp.lang.javascript meta FAQ - v0.2 - 98/04/07

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Christopher Thompson

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Apr 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/7/98
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comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Table of Contents

1 meta-FAQ meta-questions
2 comp.lang.javascript tips
3 JavaScript resources
4 Contributors


1.0 meta-FAQ meta-questions

You are reading the comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ, version 0.2.

This is the document that will eventually (within the next week, I
hope) become the official comp.lang.javascript (clj) FAQ. Or, more
accurately, the meta-FAQ as it only provides URLs to further
information about JavaScript and some hints and tips to make your
stay in comp.lang.javascript more enjoyable. This document is not
intended as a JavaScript tutorial or reference guide. There is
already plenty of this sort of information on the web.

This document was created to help reduce the high levels of noise on
clj and to provide a resource for people new to JavaScript or who
want to know locations of valuable JavaScript resources.

If you have a question you feel should be answered in the meta-FAQ,
a correction for information included in this document, or wish to
note a URL not included herein, please email the meta-FAQ maintainer,
Christopher Thompson, at thom...@ugrad.cs.ualberta.ca.

The meta-FAQ will be posted to clj, in text form, once a day until such
a time as the regulars feel it can be posted less frequently. It is
also available at:
http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/meta-FAQ.html


2.0 comp.lang.javascript tips

2.1 Which newsgroup deal with JavaScript?

comp.lang.javascript is the official usenet newsgroup dealing with
JavaScript. There are other newsgroups but many of them are not
carried by most news feeds. clj is an unmoderated newsgroup.

2.2 What questions are off-topic for clj?

clj deals primarily with client-side JavaScript, running under a
browser. Server-side JavaScript questions are also welcome but you
should note explicitly in your post that your question deals with
server-side scripting.

JavaScript and Java are two completely different languages. Java
questions should be asked in one of the comp.lang.java.*
newsgroups; they are not appropriate for clj.

Questions dealing with other scripting languages, such as VBScript,
or dealing only with HTML, are also off-topic. So are HTML-only
questions.

2.3 Why did I get flamed when I posted to clj? What do I have to do
before posting to clj?

Before posting to clj, you should thoroughly read this document. You
should also thoroughly read the resources mentioned in section 3.
And you should read all appropriate posts to the clj newsgroup for
several days. Most questions come up at least once every other day
and people get sick of answering them repeatedly.

Please state your question as clearly and concisely as possible,
as this will make it far easier for the other readers of the list
to understand your problems and suggest possible solutions.

Has the same question already been posted that day? It is okay to
ask again with your particular information, but indicate that you
have seen the previous question and tell how yours differs.

Include the script you have been working on (or url) - indicate the
problem spots and/or previous attempts. Try to limit the length of
your post by removing extraneous page elements, but avoid removing
script unless you are sure it is not an issue.

Post in plain-text only. Do not post using HTML. If you have to
include your script, paste it in to your post in plain-text, do not
uuencode it or attach it using mime.

Don't ask, or at least expect, to be emailed individually. Some
individuals run scams for the purpose of collecting active email
addresses and many won't risk being victimized. If you have
circumstances that won't allow you to read clj for the followup,
explain what they are and ask to be CC'ed a copy. You also might try
one of the sites listed in section 3 to read any followups.

Don't take flames too seriously. And don't start a thread
complaining about rude or flippant responses, there is already
enough noise in clj. Keep a sense of humour while posting and
reading and everything will be a lot more enjoyable.

2.4 Why was my post not answered?

This could be for several reasons:

* it was a variation of a frequently asked question and was
therefore ignored by everyone

* no one knows the answer

* the person with the answer has not seen the post

* it might not be possible to do what you want to do but perhaps
readers of clj are reluctant to answer your post in the negative
when they are not convinced that it cannot be done.

2.5 How do I direct someone to this FAQ?

This document is posted to clj very frequently. There should be no
reason to direct someone to it. However, if someone asks a question
answered in this FAQ or in one of the resources listed herein,
please let them know their question is answered in the FAQ and that
the FAQ can be found at:
http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/meta-FAQ.html

2.6 What is JScript? ECMAScript?

JScript is Microsoft's implementation of JavaScript. ECMAScript is
the international standard for JavaScript. The 4.x browsers are more
or less ECMAScript compliant. Note that ECMAScript did not attempt
to standardize the document object model.

2.7 What is the document object model?

Strictly speaking the document object model (DOM) is not a part of
JavaScript. This is the collection of objects provided by each
browser that allows JavaScript to actually be a useful language.

Basically, any object in the window hierarchy is part of the DOM.
This means that document.writeln(), for example, is not a JavaScript
method but is, in fact, a method provided by the DOM. Although there
is an attempt in progress to standardize the DOM, this has not yet
happened. Most cross-browser coding problems come from slightly
different implementations of the DOM in the different browsers.

2.8 I have a question that is not answered in here or in any of the
resources mentioned here but I'm sure it has been answered in clj.
Where are the clj archives located?

* http://www.dejanews.com/ maintains a usenet archive site. Tens of
thousands of clj posts are archived there.

* http://www.altavista.digital.com also maintains a usenet archive.


3.0 JavaScript resources

3.1 What books cover JavaScript?

There are rather a lot of JavaScript books available. In general,
clj regulars recommend Danny Goodman's JavaScript Bible, now in
third edition (more information available at http://www.dannyg.com/)
or O'Reilly's JavaScript: The Definitive Guide (more information
available at http://www.oreilly.com/). Either book should answer
almost all of your questions and is well worth the money. Make sure
you buy the most recent edition.

3.2 What online resources are available?

* http://www.btinternet.com/~martin.webb/ This is an exhaustive
JavaScript FAQ and is the reason this document is an unFAQ, not
a FAQ. More than 90% of questions posted to clj are already
answered in here. Don't post until you read this.

* http://www.dannyg.com/. There is a much shorter JavaScript FAQ
here which is also worth checking out.

* http://home.netscape.com/eng/mozilla/3.0/handbook/javascript/.
Netscape's JavaScript handbook. If you are developing for NN2 or
MSIE 3, ignore any features marked as implemented in NN3. This
is a good online reference to JavaScript.

* http://developer.netscape.com/library/documentation/communicator/jsguide/js1_2.htm
The JavaScript 1.2 reference guide, for NN4 developers.

* http://www.microsoft.com/scripting/. Microsoft's scripting site.
Unfortunately, this only covers the most recent version JScript.

* http://www.ecma.ch/stand/ecma-262.htm, the official ECMAScript
specification.

* http://www.dejanews.com/ and http://www.altavista.digital.com/
archive usenet newsgroups.


4.0 Contributors

Thanks to the following contributors:
* Jason Olmsted (olm...@phat-media.com,
http://www.phat-media.com/olm/) for the prototype version of
this document.

* Catherine Skidmore (cath...@suck-my-big.org,
http://www.suck-my-big.org/) for being the Queen of clj.

* Stuart Updegrave (syz...@seanet.com) for proof-reading this
document.

* Martin Webb (http://www.btinternet.com/~martin.webb/) for
maintaining the best JavaScript FAQ site I've seen and
also for suggesting changes to this document.

* Christopher Thompson (thom...@ugrad.cs.ualberta.ca,
http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/) for maintaining this
document.

* Eric Lippert (Eri...@Microsoft.Com) for unofficially
representing Microsoft in clj.

* Mike Shaver (sha...@netscape.com) for unofficially representing
Netscape in clj.

* Everyone else I haven't mentioned who has helped me grasp
JavaScript.


--

-=Christopher Thompson=-

comp.lang.javascript unFAQ at:
http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/unFAQ.html
All email is spam-filtered: http://www.internz.com/SpamBeGone/
My minimalistic web site: http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/

Jan Ehrhardt

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Apr 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/7/98
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On 7 Apr 1998 14:24:33 GMT, Christopher Thompson wrote:

or should this be:

http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/meta-FAQ.html

Jan

Christopher Thompson

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Apr 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/7/98
to

Jan Ehrhardt (mon...@monitor.nl.X) wrote:
: On 7 Apr 1998 14:24:33 GMT, Christopher Thompson wrote:

: >comp.lang.javascript unFAQ at:
: >http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/unFAQ.html

: or should this be:

: http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/meta-FAQ.html

Yeah, thanks for the correction.

--

-=Christopher Thompson=-

comp.lang.javascript unFAQ at:
http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/meta-FAQ.html

Christopher Thompson

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Apr 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/8/98
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comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Table of Contents

1 meta-FAQ meta-questions
2 comp.lang.javascript tips
3 JavaScript resources
4 Contributors


1.0 meta-FAQ meta-questions

You are reading the comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ, version 0.3.


2.0 comp.lang.javascript tips


3.0 JavaScript resources

JavaScript FAQ and is the reason this document is a meta-FAQ, not


4.0 Contributors


--

-=Christopher Thompson=-

comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ at:
http://ugweb.cs.ualberta.ca/~thompson/programming/javascript/meta-FAQ.html

Christopher Thompson

unread,
Apr 13, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/13/98
to

comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Table of Contents

1 meta-FAQ meta-questions
2 comp.lang.javascript tips
3 JavaScript resources
4 Contributors


1.0 meta-FAQ meta-questions

You are reading the comp.lang.javascript meta-FAQ, version 0.4.


2.0 comp.lang.javascript tips


3.0 JavaScript resources


4.0 Contributors

* Eric Lippert (Eri...@Microsoft.Com) for representing Microsoft

Christopher Thompson

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Apr 14, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/14/98
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Christopher Thompson

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Apr 15, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/15/98
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