Chapter 9. jQuery and Jython

Language is no longer regarded as peripheral to our grasp of the world we live in, but as central to it. Words are not mere vocal labels or communicational adjuncts superimposed upon an already given order of things. They are collective products of social interaction, essential instruments through which human beings constitute and articulate their world. This typically twentieth-century view of language has profoundly influenced developments throughout the whole range of human sciences.

Roy Harris

Programming languages have an immediate and tangible impact on the lives of those who use them and on those who are not even aware of their existence. Amusingly enough, programmers often spend precious little time working with the fundamental features of a language. After gaining an understanding of these, they immediately look for ways to avoid reinventing the wheel. An abstraction level or generalization can become so popular that it becomes practically conflated with the original language.

The jQuery library is such a technology related to JavaScript. It has been widely adopted, and most JavaScript developers have used it extensively. Some consider it not just a library, but more of a internal Domain Specific Language (DSL). Thought of this way, jQuery is a small language with a focus on DOM manipulation, Ajax processing, and other common JavaScript tasks. In any case, jQuery use is so prevalent that you will find questions online of the form, “How to do X ...

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