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DOM Scripting: A Web Standard

Following @media 2005 — the first Web Standards conference in Europe — a group of front-end coders gathered in a pub in London to discuss JavaScript. JavaScript had a problem. Its reputation was tarnished, to say the least. The common perception of client-side scripting was frozen in the late '90s ...

By Jeremy Keith | February 20th, 2008

A band-aid for browsers

With tongue firmly in cheek, DOM Scripting Task Force member Dean Edwards says: Just what the world needs, another JavaScript library. That hasn't stopped him from creating Yet Another JavaScript Library Without Documentation™. But this isn't a big full-featured library along the lines of jQuery or YUI. Instead, this works more along ...

By Jeremy Keith | March 26th, 2007

Talking with Microsoft about

I was in Redmond on Friday to meet with a few folks on the Internet Explorer team to discuss improvements we (as in the WaSP DOM Scripting and Microsoft task forces, and the JS Ninjas) wanted to see in

By Aaron Gustafson | February 4th, 2007

Reducing the pain of adopting a JavaScript library

Why is it so difficult to adopt a new JavaScript library? Chris Heilmann offers library developers a path for improvement.

By Mike Davies | December 12th, 2006

You can improve

If you’ve ever wanted the opportunity to tell Microsoft what they should do with IE next, now is the time.

By Aaron Gustafson | November 4th, 2006

Video Presentation: Douglas Crockford on the “Theory of the DOM”

Douglas Crockford, discoverer of JSON and JavaScript evangelist/veteran has given a training on the theory of the DOM lately and the videos are available on the web. The course takes you through the theory of the DOM, how browsers implement it and what the problems with the DOM and the ...

By Christian Heilmann | October 18th, 2006

Event Handling versus Event Delegation

It is not new, but it still is rather clever: In order to avoid having to add event handlers to each and every element you want to monitor, you can use one single handler on a parent element and let browser event bubbling do the rest of the work for ...

By Christian Heilmann | September 24th, 2006

IE7 JavaScript Improvements

The IEBlog recently reported some improvements in IE7’s JavaScript engine.

By Dean Edwards | September 21st, 2006

Detecting when good fonts change size

Designing for the web is challenging enough, but when you need to take into account scaling font-sizes, it can quickly become a nightmare. The common wisdom is to design your pages to accomodate fonts two sizes up and two sizes down from the default, but with this new script from two clever Yahoo! blokes, your can get way more clever.

By Aaron Gustafson | September 12th, 2006

Maintainable JavaScript

The Web Standards Group (not to be confused with the Web Standards Project) is a grassroots organisation based in Australia dedicated to promoting web standards and accessibility. The organisation's activities have now spread to the other side of the world. The first Web Standards Group event in London was held last ...

By Jeremy Keith | July 18th, 2006

Talking about JavaScript in London

JavaScript was just one of the items on the menu at this year's @media conference in London. The panel on JavaScript libraries featured Simon Willison, Stuart Langridge, Peter-Paul Koch, Dan Webb and the host with the most, Cameron Adams. It was a highly entertaining romp through the pros and cons ...

By Jeremy Keith | July 3rd, 2006

JavaScript beyond the browser

It's always interesting to see Web Standards used in a setting outside the browser. Did you know, for instance, that the chat client Adium can be skinned using CSS? JavaScript is showing up in more and more desktop apps. Apple's Dashboard and Yahoo's widgets (formerly Konfabulator) are the obvious examples. But ...

By Jeremy Keith | June 23rd, 2006

Promoting the responsible use of JavaScript: writing, teaching and presenting

The members of the DOM Scripting Task force have been busy writing and reviewing books, teaching and presenting at conferences and workshops, and preparing for upcoming events; focusing on the responsible use of JavaScript, as well as accessible JavaScript. Here’s an update of recent and forthcoming activities our Task Force members are involved in. Next stop is @media 2006 – see you there!

By Mike Davies | June 12th, 2006

London Web Standards Group meeting 14th of July

See Andy Budd and Christian Heilmann talk about “Maintainable JavaScript” and “Who cares about Standards” respectively on 14th of July in London. Cheap as Chips and a good networking opportunity to boot!

By Mike Davies | June 8th, 2006

A DOM Scripting Wishlist for Microsoft

Peter Paul Koch has kick-started a discussion called “IE 7 and JavaScript: what needs to be fixed?”

By Jeremy Keith | April 30th, 2006

Painless Node Creation with DOM Builder

Dan Webb’s DOM Builder takes the finickiness out of standards-based markup generation.

By Jeremy Keith | April 14th, 2006

DOM Builder

Now here’s a script we can get behind… Dan Webb’s DOM Builder combines the ease of innerHTML with the precision of DOM methods.

By Jeremy Keith | April 13th, 2006

Trying to explain the differences between DHTML and DOM scripting with an example

A summary of the issues around DHTML, and the value behind DOM Scripting.

By Christian Heilmann | March 29th, 2006

Dean Edwards Speaks

Jonathan Snook interviews Dean Edwards.

By Jeremy Keith | March 20th, 2006

Cross-Browser Comparison of Scripting Libraries

A scorecard of scripting libraries.

By Christian Heilmann | March 6th, 2006

Quick Explanation of the Object Literal

Christian Heilmann explains the object literal JavaScript syntax.

By Christian Heilmann | February 17th, 2006

Yahoo Releases its User Interface Library

Graded Browser Support, design patterns library, user interface library. Its been a busy day over at the Yahoo Developer Network.

By Jeremy Keith | February 14th, 2006

AJAX for Eclipse

IBM, Mozilla, Zimbra and Dojo announce a project to develop AJAX widgets for Eclipse.

By Chris Kaminski | February 2nd, 2006


getElementsByTagNames() returns elements with several tag names in the order they appear in the document.

By Peter-Paul Koch | January 30th, 2006

Shorter DOMScripting via Cloning vs. Generating New Elements?

Is cloning nodes quicker than generating new elements?

By Christian Heilmann | January 6th, 2006

JavaScript Animation for Beginners

A beginner-level tutorial on JavaScript animation from Emrah Baskaya.

By Chris Kaminski | December 29th, 2005

JavaScript Tips From Dean Edwards

Dean Edwards starts JavaScript tips with speeding up object detection.

By Jeremy Keith | December 27th, 2005

Developer Resources

Yahoo have just added a JavaScript center to their Developer Network.

By Jeremy Keith | December 18th, 2005

AJAX Mistakes

A good list of DOM Scripting mistakes.

By Chris Kaminski | December 6th, 2005

Tool for tracking IE memory leaks

Drip, the IE leak detector.

By Chris Kaminski | December 6th, 2005

When to use DOM Scripting (and When Not To)

Alex Bosworth has a thoughtful piece on what sorts of apps require DOM Scripting for optimal user experience, and what sorts of apps are better without.

By Chris Kaminski | December 4th, 2005

The Web Standards Project is a grassroots coalition fighting for standards which ensure simple, affordable access to web technologies for all.

Recent Buzz

Our Work Here is Done

By Aaron Gustafson | March 1st, 2013

Thanks to the hard work of countless WaSP members and supporters (like you), Tim Berners-Lee’s vision of the web as an open, accessible, and universal community is largely the reality.

When The Web Standards Project (WaSP) formed in 1998, the web was the battleground in an ever-escalating war between two browser makers—Netscape and Microsoft—who were each taking turns “advancing” HTML to the point of collapse. You see, in an effort to one-up each other, the two browsers introduced new elements and new ways of manipulating web documents; this escalated to the point where their respective 4.0 versions were largely incompatible.

Realizing that this fragmentation would inevitably drive up the cost of building websites and ran the risk of denying users access to content and services they needed, Glenn Davis, George Olsen, and Jeffrey Zeldman co-founded WaSP and rallied an amazing group of web designers and developers to help them push back. The WaSP’s primary goal was getting browser makers to support the standards set forth by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

In 2001, with the browser wars largely over, WaSP began to shift its focus. While some members continued to work with browser vendors on improving their standards support, others began working closely with software makers like Macromedia to improve the quality of code being authored in tools such as Dreamweaver. And others began the hard slog of educating web designers and developers about the importance of using web standards, culminating in the creation of WaSP InterAct, a web curriculum framework which is now overseen by the W3C.

Thanks to the hard work of countless WaSP members and supporters (like you), Tim Berners-Lee’s vision of the web as an open, accessible, and universal community is largely the reality. While there is still work to be done, the sting of the WaSP is no longer necessary. And so it is time for us to close down The Web Standards Project.

Many (if not all) of us are continuing to work in the world of web standards, but our work is now largely outside the umbrella of WaSP. If you are interested in continuing to work on web standards-related projects along with us, we humbly suggest you follow these projects:

  • A List Apart – The magazine “for people who make websites” is run by WaSP founder Jeffrey Zeldman and is a consistent source of forward-thinking articles and tutorials.
  • HTML5 Doctor – A solid resource and discussion forum on all things HTML5, brought to you by Bruce Lawson and his team.
  • W3C Community Groups – If you have a passion for a specific web technology, you can help make it better by participating in one (or more) community groups. In particular, you might be interested in one of these: Core Mobile Web Platform, Responsive Images, Web Education, and Web Media Text Tracks.
  • – A fantastic web standards resource, providing up-to-date documentation, Q&As, tutorials & more. Chris Mills, Doug Schepers, and a number of other standards advocates are involved in this project.
  • Web Standards Sherpa – An educational resource founded by WaSP which continues to operate under the leadership of Chris Casciano, Virginia DeBolt, Aaron Gustafson, and Emily Lewis.
  • Web Standards + Small Business – An outreach project started by WaSP that educates small businesses about why they should care about web standards. This project is overseen by Aaron Gustafson.

The job’s not over, but instead of being the work of a small activist group, it’s a job for tens of thousands of developers who care about ensuring that the web remains a free, open, interoperable, and accessible competitor to native apps and closed eco-systems. It’s your job now, and we look forward to working with you, and wish you much success.

Nota bene: In the near future, we will be making a permanent, static archive of and some of our other resources like WaSP Interact to preserve them as a resource and to provide a record of our 15-year mission to improve the web.
Bruce Lawson and Steph Troeth contributed to this post.

Filed in WaSP Announcement | Comments (89)

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