IN ALL FAIRNESS, I should start this book with an apology—not to you, reader, though I don’t doubt that I’ll owe you at least one by the time we get to the end. I owe JavaScript a number of apologies for the things I said to it during the early years of my career—things strong enough to etch glass.

This is my not-so-subtle way of saying that JavaScript can be a tricky thing to learn.

HTML and CSS are tough in their own ways, but we can learn about them piecemeal. They’re simpler in that we type something and it happens: border-radius rounds corners the way we tell it to; a p tag is for paragraphs, full stop.

When I was just starting out with JavaScript, on the other hand, everything I learned seemed to be the tip of a ...

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