Client-side Programming

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Client-side Programming

Client-side Programming

Client-side programming involves writing code that is interpreted by a browser such as Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox or by any other web client such as a cell phone. The most common languages and technologies used in client-side programming are HTML, JavaScript, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), and Adobe Flash.


HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is the language behind most web pages. The language is made up of elements that describe the structure and format of the content on a web page.

Cascading Style Sheets

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is used in HTML pages to separate formatting and layout from content. Rules defining color, size, positioning and other display aspects of elements are defined in the HTML page or in linked CSS pages.


JavaScript is used to make HTML pages more dynamic and interactive. It can be used to validate forms, pop up new windows, and create dynamic effects such as dropdown menus and image rollovers.

Dynamic HTML

Dynamic HTML is not a language in and of itself, but rather refers to code that uses JavaScript to manipulate CSS properties on the fly.


The term Ajax was originally a pseudo-acronym for "Asynchronous JavaScript And XML," but is now used much more broadly to cover all methods of communicating with a server using JavaScript.

The main purpose of Ajax is to provide a simple and standard means for a web page to communicate with the server without a complete page refresh.

Adobe Flash

At the time of this writing, according to Adobe's website, more than 97% of computers connected to the internet have Flash Player installed. The Flash Player is a plug-in to Internet Explorer and other web browsers. It enables browsers to display dynamic graphical web pages that can be visually more fluid than pages that are built with Dynamic HTML. Flash pages are called movies and they are created using special software (also called Flash). ActionScript, a language similar to JavaScript, is used to manipulate Flash objects to make movies more interactive.

At the time of this writing, designers are either moving to JavaScript or converting existing Flash videos to HTML5. However, converting is a challenge because not all features of Flash can be converted. Tools to solve this issue are currently being introduced by Adobe (with Wallaby) and Google (with Swiffy) and others.