Another anecdote along with Jane's... i make a lot of comparisons to
jQuery as well because it's the only other library i've gotten
i still really like Prototype's robust set of utility & data storage
functions. i get wary of storing data directly on elements
[jQuery.data()] and sometimes it's simply not appropriate to do so, so
having Prototype's pseudo-class structure to drive the overall
functionality of a page is very helpful, because i can create "class"
members and manage data there, rather than in the HTML area of the
DOM. Classes really helped me build complex JS applications when i was
That said, Prototype is bloated, and doesn't play nice with others.
Scriptaculous is old, just as bloated, and i think 1 or 2 lines of
code have been updated in the last year, to provide Pt 1.7
compatibility. Plus Scriptaculous doesn't provide an actual UI, just
some enhanced visual effects & other tools. And you have to be careful
of a lot of gotchas in those effects because Scriptaculous doesn't
wrap your code into HTML & object references that it will need to make
those effects work. jQuery's UI does that. One of the bigger
advantages of Scriptaculous is Builder. i much prefer creating HTML
through a node/tree structure than slapping an HTML string into an
element. However, someone went and built a jQuery plugin to do what
Builder does. /shrug
i've noted elsewhere in this group that i don't like that there are
several aliases for many of Prototype's functions, most of which are
unnecessary Rails translations for otherwise sensible names. i get
that it's supposed to help Rails devs use Prototype efficiently, so
why not just keep only the Rails versions of functions and drop the
aliases? jQuery tends to provide one way to do a lot of things.
Prototype tends to provide a lot of ways to do one thing.
i didn't like jQuery at first for all the reasons i stated above for
liking Prototype. Once i got the hang of the major differences &
slight syntax variations, i've found it to really save time in a lot
of ways. Granted, i also haven't built any huge application-level code
using jQuery yet, but i feel like i could now that i understand the
inner workings better. Jane mentioned event handling. i can go either
way with that. Prototype's Function#bind makes it easy to incorporate
the Class object into an event handler, but you lose context of the
element unless you use Event#findElement. And i really like Event#on,
but haven't done any heavy lifting with Prototype since 1.7 was
released. So jQuery's handlers work fine for me.
i've also never developed with Rails, and maybe because of that i
don't feel a particular loyalty. i want the right tool for the job at
hand, and lately that has been jQuery. Especially the ease of using
plugins for "missing" functionality, and the UI library which amazes
But to address your actual question: Why has traffic died down in this
My personal observation would be that jQuery has simply gained
traction over the last couple years. Prototype... i don't know. Kinda
feels stale, neglected, and maybe a bit stuck in its ways? It seems
like there's a lot of push to make JS libraries cooperate with each
other so you can get the best each has to offer, yet Prototype can't
get itself away from modifying native objects, which forces everyone
else to provide safety schemes to accommodate. Also, where most
libraries provide compression-safe code, Prototype stays pretty rotund
at ~160K. Add Scriptaculous and you can hit 1MB of library before you
get to any of your own code.
In spite of criticisms, i don't want this to feel like a slam against
Prototype. Obviously i still get something out of it or i'd drop my
subscription to the groups. But you ask why the traffic has slowed to
a crawl, and that's my opinion: Prototype itself has also slowed down.
Check the dev group if you don't believe me (http://groups.google.com/
group/prototype-core/topics?hl=en&gvc=2). Two legitimate threads with
posts in 2011, and those being about bugs, not additional development.
So there's my $0.02+... i feel your frustration, though.
On Mar 14, 1:53 pm, Walter Lee Davis <wa...@wdstudio.com> wrote:
> Sorry for the rant, but I came to Prototype by way of early
> exploration with Rails. I found Prototype approachable and learn-able
> in a way that I didn't (and don't) find jQuery to be.
> I've invested years in learning Prototype and it has trained and
> At the same time, I can't help but notice the <crickets> around here
> lately. When I joined this list (back in the rails-spinoff days) there
> were dozens of posts per day, now we're lucky to get there in a week.
> What the heck is going on here?
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