Why disable Javascript?

The following are some of the most common reasons as to why people disable Javascript and my responses that explain why those reasons are mistaken.

Reason: Because you can do nasty things with it.

Response: No you can't - the security in Javascript makes it perfectly safe to use. It is ActiveX that has the security issue and which is the reason why many IE users turn off Javascript and this will hopefully be fixed in IE7. PHP, ASP, Java, and just about every other programming language in existancehave more ability to do nasty things than Javascript does. Javascript can't access anything outside the web page unless you specifically allow it and even then it can't access anything outside the browser.

Reason:It makes web pages completely unusable by people with disabilities.

Response: Not if it is used properly. Web pages should be designed so that they work without Javascript and work better with Javascript. Javascript enhances the page interaction and can make accessing the information much faster. Many people with disabilities use Javascript enabled browsers but the Javascript has to be coded with those users in mind in order for it to be usable.

Reason: and it adds no real value in most cases except cute visual tricks.

Response: Javascript is so easy to use that a lot of novice web authors use it without bothering to learn how to use it properly first. Any web site designed by an experienced programmer will use Javascript for what it is intended for and the page will be much better for it.

Reason: More and more companies are disabling javascript as a corporate policy.

Response: The exact opposite of this statement is what is actually occuring. Web 2.0 relies on Javascript in order to function. More and more companies are looking to follow the lead of Google, Yahoo, etc and implement web 2.0 interactive web pages that rely on Javascript for its operation. More and more companies are turning to Javascript to make their web sites more interactive.


This article written by Stephen Chapman, Felgall Pty Ltd.

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