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The Role of Client-Side Scripting

Using a client-side script for interactivity in a Web application usually provides the appearance of better performance than using a server-side script to implement the same functionality because the client-side script does not incur the delay of a round trip between the client and the server, making the Web application more responsive. This is crucial for a dynamic user experience in a Web application. As an extreme example, imagine that a developer wants to limit input to a text box to only numbers. Each time the user hits a key, the character entered must be examined and thrown away if it's not a number or cursor movement key. Imagine the delay if the application had to wait for a round trip between the client and server and redraw the page for each keystroke. Obviously, such a feature would never be practical in a Web application if it were not for client-side scripting. Client-side scripting allows many features to be easily incorporated in Web applications that would otherwise be impractical.

In addition, client-side scripting offers the benefit of off-loading part of the computational demands of an application from the server to the client. The client-side computer is usually wasting most of its processing potential, idly waiting for the user to do something. Web servers, on the other hand, are usually taxed to their limit, serving hundreds or thousands of concurrent users.

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