[wp-hackers] jQuery alternatives?

Andrew Nacin wp at andrewnacin.com
Sun Feb 2 01:19:57 UTC 2014

On Sat, Feb 1, 2014 at 4:06 PM, Luke Bryan <lukebryan at sharefaith.com> wrote:

> Considering that the only downside of this seems to be that it doesn't
> officially support ancient IE9 or older browsers, I was curious if
> Wordpress developers had considered swapping it out or using some other
> jQuery alternative at some point in the future?

We have no plans to drop jQuery.

Few libraries are more battle-tested than jQuery. They account for things
that most libraries dismiss as edge cases. And yes, that includes edge
cases in "modern" browsers, not just Internet Explorer < 8, 9, 10,
whatever. See also https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=7153630. They also
have been moving forward with their jQuery 2.0 branch, along with newer
tools (say, modularization), all which show they are willing to continue to

jQuery also keeps our barrier to entry for core development low, because
we're using a common "language" that is easy to understand, ubiquitous, and
handles a lot under the hood so we don't need to. They also well-backed by
a strong team of contributors and they're going to be around for a long
time. And even if it is slower than some other library than may be out
there (note -- jQuery is by no means slow, and even then they've been making
huge strides), it's absolutely worth every penny for the convenience and
wide knowledge factor. All libraries and languages add some sort of
overhead. The key is to weigh whether the performance cost is worth making
things easier. Otherwise we'd all be writing in ARM machine code.

We also happen to have a fantastic relationship with the jQuery core team.
This cannot be overstated. They help us, we help them, and when bugs in
WordPress or jQuery affect the other project, things get escalated and
fixed very quickly (like, in a matter of hours). They also share our
philosophies not only of an open web and a willingness to work everywhere,
but of backwards compatibility. Shared vision is probably the most
important thing to consider when we look at third-party libraries.


p.s. If you re-read this replacing '"jQuery" with "WordPress," you could
re-use this as a spirited defense of using WordPress over some other new
hotness. They are the WordPress of JavaScript libraries.

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