About Nicholas C. Zakas

Recent Posts

Working with files in JavaScript, Part 2: FileReader

In my previous post, I introduced using files in JavaScript, focusing specifically on how to get access to File objects. These objects contain file metadata obtained only when the user opts to either upload a file or drags and drops a file onto the web page. Once you have files, however, the next step is... […]

Working with files in JavaScript, Part 1: The Basics

Many years ago, I was asked during a job interview at Google what changes I would make to the web in order to provide better experiences. At the top of my list was having some way to work with files other than the <input type="file"> control. Even as the rest of the web was evolving,... […]

Book review: The Linux Command Line

I have a confession to make, before joining Yahoo!, I had never used Linux before. After having one semester of UNIX in college, I spent the next five years just using Windows. When I got to Yahoo!, I was faced with the daunting task of learning Linux on the job as I went. I still... […]

The performance of localStorage revisited

Now a few weeks removed from a large amount of hand-ringing around the performance of localStorage in browsers, I’ve learned some more about why there was such a concern at Mozilla (which prompted Chris to write his blog post1). The post was met with skepticism because it lacked two key components: numbers and a comparison.... […]

How to install Apache Ant on Windows

Apache Ant1 is still my favorite tool for creating build systems for my code. Yes, I know there are a lot of shiny new tools written in Node.js or something else, but I’ve used Ant for a long time and have found it easy to teach others. What’s more, it comes installed on Macs and... […]

It’s time to start using JavaScript strict mode

ECMAScript 5 introduced strict mode to JavaScript. The intent is to allow developers to opt-in to a “better” version of JavaScript, where some of the most common and egregious errors are handled differently. For a while, I was skeptical, especially with only one browser (Firefox) initially supporting strict mode. Fast forward to today, every major... […]

In defense of localStorage

Earlier this week, Chris Heilmann wrote a blog post entitled, There is no simple solution for localStorage1 in which he decried localStorage as slow and encouraged everyone to stop using it. Surprisingly, in a post about performance, there was no mention of what “slow” or “terrible performance” actually meant. Performance can’t be discussed in a... […]

Understanding technical debt

In the creation of a web site, there are several groups of people who participate: product managers or marketing representatives who are responsible for defining functionality and design, user interface designers who create the actual visuals, and the developers who are responsible for implementing the final product. Of these groups, developers tend to get a... […]

Book review: The Art of Readable Code

When I first proposed my upcoming book, Maintainable JavaScript, I was offered the chance to review a book on a similar topic. The Art of Readable Code by Dustin Boswell and Trevor Foucher is a book after my own heart. While not strictly about JavaScript, this book delves into the little explored region of code... […]

CSS media queries in JavaScript, Part 2

In my previous post1, I introduced using CSS media queries in JavaScript both through a custom implementation and using the CSSOM Views matchMedia() method. Media queries are incredibly useful, both in CSS and JavaScript, and so I continued with my research to see how best to take advantage of this capability. As it turns out,... […]