At December’s WordCamp US, WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg used his State of the Word talk to exhort us to “learn JavaScript, deeply.” But what does this mean and what do WordPress developers need to know about JavaScript? JavaScript is an established and continually growing front-end language that’s traditionally been used to create animations and effects on web pages. Chances are if you’ve got a plugin on your site for a slider, social media links or responsive navigation menu, it uses JavaScript to create the effects. If you’re a WordPress developer accustomed to working with PHP, you may never have touched a line of JavaScript and may be feeling somewhat intimidated by the prospect of delving into it. But the good news is that PHP and JavaScript have their similarities. They work in different ways and different contexts, but the code you write isn’t always all that different. In this post, I’ll outline some of the key JavaScript concepts that WordPress developers need to understand to start working with it. I’ll cover: JavaScript and WordPress – how they interact, similarities and differences Using JavaScript in your themes and plugins – the easiest way to start learning JavaScript
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