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ASP in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition by A. Keyton Weissinger

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Client-Side Scripting

The Hypertext Markup Language, or HTML, provides for very detailed formatting of static textual content. This content can contain images, tables, and carefully formatted text and hyperlinks, making for a very powerful medium through which to present information. However, aside from the very low-level interactivity of hyperlinks and their ability to move the user from one page to another in a stream of information flowing from one page to another, HTML by itself allows for no true interactivity. HTML does not allow the web page to react to user input in any way beyond navigating to another page. HTML is an excellent way to allow for the presentation of information but does not allow for the interactivity required to transform web pages from an information medium to a dynamic web application solution.

Netscape Communications, along with Sun Microsystems, created a solution called LiveScript that allowed for the inclusion of limited programming instructions that reside in web pages viewed using the Netscape Navigator browser on the client machine. This programming language was limited in its ability to interact with the user's machine outside the browser and slowly over an evolving process was made safe and secure. You could not use LiveScript programming instructions on the client machine to undermine the security innate to the Netscape Navigator browser. LiveScript, in accordance with the marketing frenzy surrounding Java, was quickly renamed to JavaScript. ...

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