Sometimes if it's complicated, it's probably too complicated: doing noscript tags with JavaScript

by Ted Jardine Wednesday, June 13, 2007 3:30 PM

A couple days back I implemented ComponentArt's new ComboBox for a project. Worked great and brought some nice functionality (look ahead filtering and linked dropdowns: a second ComboBox populated via an AJAX callback according to the value selected in the first). However, I noticed at the very end that the controls do not degrade AT ALL when JavaScript is turned off. They look the same, but are completely disabled and useless.

At that point, even if I could duplicate the functionality another way it wasn't worth it; at the very least however, I needed to provide obvious notification that if JavaScript is disabled, the dropdowns are completely non-functional. So heh, easy enough: create a div nicely styled with the obligatory "JavaScript must be enabled to...blah blah blah..." and then set up a startup script for everyone with JavaScript enabled so that this message is not visible.... If you aren't laughing right now, you should be.

It took me a couple days to remember that that's what <noscript>fancy "If you don't have JavaScript enabled" message here</noscript> is for.

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