Short jQuery script to clear form

Clearing a form can sometimes be a bit of a hassle since there’s no native functionality for that – the “reset” button resets the form fields to their default values, not clears them. The script below takes care of exactly that, taking into account some of the newer input types (such as “email” and “date”). It is written as an extension to jQuery, meaning you can use it like a jQuery method, something like this `$(‘#myform’).clearForm()`, but it can easily be written as a regular stand alone function.

// .clearForm - clears form fields from any values
$.fn.clearForm = function () {
	var el = this.find('input, select, textarea'),
		len = el.length,
		i = 0;
	for (; i  len; i++) {
		switch (el[i].type) {
			case 'text':
			case 'password':
			case 'select-one':
			case 'select-multiple':
			case 'textarea':
			case 'email':
			case 'date':
			case 'number':
			case 'phone':
			case 'checkbox':
			case 'radio':
				el[i].checked = false;
// end .clearForm

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Simple Tooltip plugin for jQuery

This is a simple tooltip plugin for jQuery. I wanted to create it in part to try out a few ideas, but also to have something a bit nicer than the default tooltips provided by the browsers. It doesn’t allow for ton of customization (none in fact), although the style can be easily modified via CSS. I like customization so it’s something I may add in the future but for now I wanted to get this going and not get bogged down in a more complex implementation. In the process of writing this latest iteration of the plugin (it’s not the first time I’ve started it) I had a bit of a “lightbulb” moment and I wanted to share it. Read more »

Out with cookies, in with local storage – jStorage and jQuery

HTML5 Local Storage and jStorage

If you still find yourself on occasion using cookies when developing websites – to remember some setting, or selection, or whatever, stop it! Cookies suck – all you can do is store simple strings, which doesn’t give you a lot of options when you need to store complex information that might require an array or an object.

Local storage, on the other hand, is an HTML5 specification that allows browsers to store objects, XML or JSON data easily and it’s fairly widely supported. Better yet, with the jStorage library it works on pretty much every browser of consequence, including IE7 and IE6, where it falls back to userData behaviour. The only downside in case of IE7 and IE6 is that storage size is limited to 128KB, whereas in most other browsers it’s 5MB. Read more »

jQuery 1.6 Released

So I’ve been reading the change log for jQuery 1.6 and it’s a doozy, with tons of great improvements (performance particularly) and some nice changes. There’s been a bunch of performance optimizations to both .attr() and .data() functions, which I use often in my projects, so that is definitely welcomed. Not to mention the more clear separation of attributes and properties for DOM elements, which should get rid of some of the weird behaviour I sometimes see with checkboxes and radios buttons when I manipulate their state with JavaScript. On top of that there are improvements to animation performance and a kitchen sink of other changes. Needless to say I’ll be switching my codebase to 1.6 ASAP.

Optimizing JavaScript and jQuery

I’ve been working on a new project – a web application of sorts. Basically, unlike a regular web site, everything in this web applications occurs on the one page. Moreover, due to the nature of the webapp there’s a lot of javascript code handling everything from keyboard input, through DOM updates and to Ajax requests. While not time critical, it is nonetheless essential to keep this webapp working smooth and fast, and so as part of my development work on it I have been delving deeper into the “science” of optimizing javascript code, and also more specifically optimizing jQuery.

I have always been very performance conscious. It probably comes from my work as PC game developer where a single line of non-optimized rendering code could mean the difference between getting 60fps and 20fps during gameplay. In any case, I really enjoyed discovering some new tricks to squeeze more performance out of my code, and admittedly remembering some old ones as well. So I wanted to share some of those tricks, both the basic, but essential ones and the more advanced techniques. Read more »

Better jQuery Placeholder Plugin

A while back I made a post about a simple placeholder script I wrote. The idea was to provide the placeholder functionality that browsers like Chrome and Safari have, to browsers that don’t have it, like Firefox and IE. The script was very simple though and not smart in a few ways, including inability to handle password fields and an incorrect way of checking placeholder support in the browser. Since then I wrote an improved version of the script, in the form of a jQuery plugin. The highlights of this improved script include

  • proper use of jQuery’s plugin framework to create a fully chain-able plugin
  • support for password fields and text areas
  • correct check for placeholder support in browser
  • and just overall a better written piece of code

You can see a demo of the plugin in action and download the commented source file (4.7kb),  or the minified source file (1.7kb), or the clean (not minified but not commented) source file (2.6kb). Below I’ll go over some of the more interesting parts of script. Read more »

jQuery 1.5 is out

The jQuery team has released a new version of their awesome framework – jQuery 1.5. While not seemingly as significant as the 1.4 release, they made quite a few major changes under the hood.

On top the various bug fixes and performance enhancements one of the major changes in jQuery 1.5 is a complete rewrite of the Ajax module.

Perhaps the largest change is that a call to jQuery.ajax (or jQuery.get,, etc.) now returns a jXHR object that provides consistency to the XMLHttpRequest object across platforms (and allows you to perform previously-impossible tasks like aborting JSONP requests).

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Crazy long jQuery animation chains for a slideshow widget

So I was recently coding a slideshow widget using jQuery. Nothing fancy – just a box showing one image, you click an arrow, the next/previous image slides in. The code was also very straightforward – get a handle on the “slides” and use index to loop through them. For one of the animations in the transition (there were labels that were animated separately) I used a simple chain, something like $(slide).find(label).animate(). As I was writing it, it hit me, jQuery has pretty robust chains, they allow mixing pretty much every operation you can do on an element – traversal, manipulation, effects, etc. So I decided to see if I could do the entire slideshow functionality as one long chain (well, technically two, one for each arrow). Here is a demo of the slideshow widget in action. Read more »

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