Now that’s what I love to hear

I got an email the other day from Steven Mading, a developer at the BioMagnetic Resonance Bank at the University of Wisconsin. In it, he shared his experience using jsTrace and, with his permission, I’m sharing it with all of you:

I just thought I’d give a quick thank you to you for the little jsTrace JavaScript utility you made available online. I found it from a Google search and it was exactly what I needed.

It really helped me a lot. I had a problem with some widgets on an HTML form that had a lot of JavaScript hooks (things like onblur, onclick, onfocus, etc). The events were occurring in a weird order and I couldn’t trace what was happening. Using the standard alert() function was useless because making an alert window POP up caused the events to be different and changed the relevant behavior (since onfocus and onblur were a relevant part of the behavior, popping up a window changes the focus and invalidates the debugging information when what I’m trying to do is figure out why the focus changes aren’t happening the way I expect.)

Your jsTrace allowed me to figure out the problem (which, as it turns out, was that when I clicked on Widget B, I was calling BOTH the onclick for Widget B and the onblur for Widget A, but not always in a predictable order). So once I knew that was happening, I was able to redesign my code to work either way and thus fix the bug.

Again, thank you for making this tool publicly available.

I love it when things work out like that. It makes it all worthwhile.

Have you had an experience with using jsTrace that you’d like to share? Do you use it or any other scripts we’ve built often? Are any of the user enhancement scripts in use on production websites? Let us know your thoughts, good or bad.

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