My JavaScript Journey

Some time ago, when I was building my first websites, they were mostly static with no effects. After that I’ve discovered a library called jQuery. Nowadays it’s so popular that anybody who has done just a little website creation knows that it exists.

So, I read some tutorials on how to do various animations and effects with jQuery and I thought that I’m pretty good at JavaScript. However, I was completely wrong. When I tried to do something at my own, such as make a more complex function that does something, I was lost in JavaScript jungle. I simply could not understand why something works and other doesn’t. JS is so different from class-like languages such as Java or C++.

I decided it’s time to read some quality tutorials and books on developing sites with JavaScript. Here I present you my humble list of books and websites I was and still am learning from:

  • Eloquent JavaScriptis a great online and free introductory book to the JavaScript programming language. The best thing about it is that it’s not just reading but there is a console on the website and you are challenged to do a lot of small tasks, which really help the reader to learn on his own mistakes.
  • Codeacademy, the famous online interactive learning website. I find it very pleasing and motivating. If you create an account on the site, you earn points and badges that push you to come back later and code more 🙂
  • JavaScript: The Good Parts, a very popular book among JS developers. Although I haven’t read the whole book yet, I find it quite suitable for beginners and intermediate JavaScript developers. JS has many bad parts and things that should be avoided and the author describes both the good techniques and the bad ones you should avoid using.
  • Secrets of the JavaScript Ninja is a mega book for intermediate and advanced JavaScript programmers (no beginners please) partly written by John Resig, who is also the creator of the jQuery JavaScript Library (yeeah). I’ve started reading this book just recently and sometimes I feel like it’s too difficult for my level of knowledge. But all in all, I recommend to buy it coz it’s great. 😀
  • Learning Advanced JavaScript is free online interactive course created also by John Resig. It contains code and discussion from his book I mentioned earlier.

In addition to these books and tutorials, I also recommend you to look at some game development frameworks and libraries in JavaScript. They tend to be very intuitive and drawing shapes and programming little games is a great way of learning JS (at least for me). Here is the list of the frameworks that I know (I have used only EaselJS):

  • EaselJS and CreateJS suite is a great and fast suite of JavaScript libraries. It is aimed especially at developers coming from Adobe Flash world because (according to the website) it is quite similar to developing games in Flash. I’ve done some small tutorials on EaselJS and I can tell you I like it. The best part is that this suite is completely free.
  • Impact Javascript Game Engine is declared by many as the best, fastest and most compatible JavaScript game engine out there. Games built on it run on all HTML5 capable browsers including iPhone and also some Android phones. It has one downside and that is, it’s not for free. Anyway, I think the price is competitive and worth it.

My JavaScript journey has just begun and I believe I will become a great developer 🙂 Do you know about any other great tutorials, books and sites where I could improve my JavaScript skills? Please share them in the comment section below. Thanks.

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  1. Thanks for the article. I am starting my JavaScript journey and looking forward to it. I am using codeacaemdy and a book named “Professional JavaScript for Web developers” which is good. It explains every little thing.


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