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jQuery Essential Training
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Using basic jQuery selectors


jQuery Essential Training

with Joe Marini

Video: Using basic jQuery selectors

Basic jQuery selectors are based on the familiar CSS syntax that you are probably already familiar with, and they work pretty much the same way that CSS does. I have listed here the basic CSS selectors in the table and you can see they correspond directly to their CSS counterparts. So, for example, if I pass a tag name to the jQuery selector, it will find me all elements that have that same tag name.
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  1. 2m 52s
    1. Welcome
      1m 9s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 43s
  2. 17m 37s
    1. What is jQuery?
      5m 19s
    2. Downloading and installing jQuery
      2m 20s
    3. Creating a simple jQuery-enabled page
      7m 12s
    4. Overview of features in jQuery
      2m 46s
  3. 59m 57s
    1. Overview of selectors and filters
      2m 9s
    2. Using basic jQuery selectors
      9m 6s
    3. Using basic jQuery filters
      8m 35s
    4. Using jQuery attribute filters
      6m 7s
    5. Child, visibility, and content filters
      9m 59s
    6. Form selectors and filters
      9m 3s
    7. Traversing documents
      9m 1s
    8. Understanding jQuery statement chaining
      1m 42s
    9. Practical example 1: Annotating page links
      4m 15s
  4. 47m 16s
    1. Creating, getting, and setting content
      5m 53s
    2. Manipulating attributes
      5m 43s
    3. Inserting content
      4m 57s
    4. Wrapping, replacing, and removing content
      5m 27s
    5. Working with CSS
      6m 19s
    6. Associating data with page elements
      9m 30s
    7. Practical example 2: Automatic TOC generator
      9m 27s
  5. 33m 6s
    1. Understanding the jQuery event handling features
      2m 4s
    2. Binding and unbinding events
      6m 23s
    3. Convenient event helper methods
      4m 40s
    4. Using the jQuery event object
      6m 21s
    5. Using miscellaneous event features
      4m 38s
    6. Practical example 3: Table striping and highlighting
      9m 0s
  6. 28m 45s
    1. Hiding and showing elements
      5m 23s
    2. Fading elements in and out
      4m 2s
    3. Sliding elements
      4m 3s
    4. Creating custom animations
      5m 58s
    5. Practical example 4: Image rotator
      9m 19s
  7. 25m 30s
    1. Introduction to jQuery UI
      3m 40s
    2. Exploring the jQuery UI widgets
      5m 24s
    3. Exploring the jQuery UI effects
      3m 58s
    4. Using the jQuery UI ThemeRoller
      4m 11s
    5. Downloading and installing jQuery UI
      8m 17s
  8. 47m 49s
    1. Overview of the sample web site
      3m 50s
    2. Using the accordion widget
      9m 14s
    3. Creating an image rotator
      10m 22s
    4. Building hover tooltips
      7m 26s
    5. Making an image selector
      9m 30s
    6. Using the Resizable effect
      7m 27s
  9. 30m 2s
    1. Working with Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (AJAX)
      10m 8s
    2. Using AJAX helpers
      4m 34s
    3. Understanding AJAX data types
      10m 14s
    4. Using global AJAX event handlers
      5m 6s
  10. 20s
    1. Goodbye

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jQuery Essential Training
4h 53m Beginner Sep 01, 2009 Updated May 24, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In jQuery Essential Training, Microsoft professional Joe Marini presents the power of the jQuery library, an open-source JavaScript project that greatly simplifies the process of adding advanced functionality to web sites. Joe teaches how to use these new features to build pages that work across browsers with the functionality that users (and clients) are looking for, from complex animation effects to dynamic page formatting. Joe pulls all of this together, showing how the jQuery UI plug-in can expand and streamline the capability of jQuery, and then integrating jQuery design tools into a complete sample web site. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Constructing jQuery selectors and filters to gather information from web pages
  • Creating, inserting, and manipulating web page content
  • Understanding jQuery statement chaining
  • Building event handlers that work across browsers
  • Working with jQuery effects, such as showing, hiding, and fading page elements
  • Creating custom animations with specialized properties and options
  • Using the jQuery UI plug-in to give pages a polished look
Developer Web Web Design Web Development
Joe Marini

Using basic jQuery selectors

Basic jQuery selectors are based on the familiar CSS syntax that you are probably already familiar with, and they work pretty much the same way that CSS does. I have listed here the basic CSS selectors in the table and you can see they correspond directly to their CSS counterparts. So, for example, if I pass a tag name to the jQuery selector, it will find me all elements that have that same tag name.

Similarly, if I pass in an identifier, jQuery will find the element that has that id. The same thing goes for class name. If I pass in a class to the jQuery selector, it will find all the elements that have a class attribute that have that class name. And just like CSS, you can get a little bit more fancy. You can look for tags that have a particular class name, or you can look for a tag that has a specific id and has a class name on it. And then, there is a wildcard character, the special character, the asterisk, basically means find all of the elements on the page.

And if that sometimes happens, you need to iterate over all of the elements in the page. So, let's take a look at how you would use jQuery versus using the plain browser DOM to get at information in a document. So, here I have a pretty fairly simple HTML file and it's been stripped down a bit for purposes of illustration. But you can see it has an unordered list in it and some list items and paragraph tags and so on. So, let's take a look at some comparisons of the DOM and jQuery.

If I want to get all the paragraph tags in the document, using the DOM, I would do something like this. I would use the document. getElementsByTagName and pass in the p, and that would get me all these paragraph tags. To do the same thing using jQuery, you can see all I have to do is call the jQuery object. That's the little $ sign right there. That's the global jQuery function, and I simply pass in the parameter p, and that will come back with what is called a matched set, or a wrap set it's sometimes called, or matched elements.

It comes back with a list of all the tags that match that particular parameter right there. Okay, suppose I wanted to get the tag that had the id "list1" and again using the DOM, I would use the standard DOM function getElementById, and I would give it the id that's this list right here. That's what the DOM would come back with. To do the same thing in jQuery, you can see I am just using standard CSS syntax, a little hash mark with the id in front of it, and that comes back with the element for that id.

Okay, let's get a little more fancy. Suppose you want to get all the list item tags that have class a on them. Well, to do that using the DOM, it's a little bit more complicated. You would have to first use the getElementsByTagName function right to get all the

  • tags, then you would have to write some for loop that would loop through all the results in that array and get the class attribute and compare it to this name right here, a, to see if it should be included in the result side. Well, jQuery does that for you and again, using CSS syntax, all I have to do is call the jQuery object with this expression right here, list items that have a on them, and it accomplishes the same thing.

    And finally, let's imagine you wanted to have a situation where you wanted all the tags regardless of what kind of tag they were that have a class b on them but only if they are inside a

      tag. Again, using DOM this would be pretty complicated. You have to get all the tags, see if they have the b class, see if they are inside the ul, that kind of thing, but jQuery makes this really easy, again, using pretty standard CSS syntax with the descendant inside the ancestor. So, this basically says get me everything that has b class as long as it's inside the ul.

      That would come back with these list items right here. In addition to the basic selectors, there are some selectors that are a little bit more advanced. These are the hierarchy and combination selectors. So, these allow you to get a little bit more advanced in selecting page content. It basically allows you to select elements based on hierarchical relationships or a combination of criteria. So, the first two do just that, whereas in jQuery, usually you will see one selector passed in. If I passed in a comma-delimited list like p, div, image, it would find all of the elements that match everything in the list and for class 1 and class 2, this means find all the elements that have both class 1 and class 2 on them.

      And they both have to be there. The next couple of examples illustrate hierarchical relationships. So, if you wanted to find all the child elements that are direct children of a certain parent, you would use this expression right here, whereas if all you cared about was finding a tag that appeared anywhere underneath a given ancestor, you would use this form, with the ancestor and then a space, and then whatever you are interested in here. In the next two, you have to deal with siblings. So, the next operator finds whatever element is next to this element, right, the previous element, and the siblings element says hey! Get me all the sibling elements that come after the previous element right here, and match the selector that I am passing in for siblings.

      Okay, so let's take a look at some of these in action. We will switch over to code. Okay, so if you look inside your exercise files, I have got a file right here named Basicselector_start and I am going to start off there. So I am going to open this up in my editor and a couple of things we are going to do. So, you see that this is pretty much the document we are working with. Very similar to the one in the slides. Got an unordered list that's in paragraphs. Let's go back to the source. So, what I am going to do is write a function that executes when the page loads and I am going to do that on the ("document").ready event.

      Okay, so here is what we are going to do. .ready. That's a function. Let's try a couple of examples. So, I will say get me the

      tags. Now, don't pay attention too much to this. What I am about to do. I want you to focus on the selectors right here. We will get to this stuff later. I just need to make the result visible, so you can see them on the screen. So, just bear with me while I do this. I am just going to make the CSS border a 3 pixel solid red line, so that we can see everything. What this is going to do is select all the paragraph tags. So, let's try that out in the browser.

      And as you can see, all the paragraph tags are now inside bold red outlines. Let's go back to the code and try something else. Okay, let's do the same thing, only this time, we are going to do it for everything that has a class of a. So you can see that these list items, that paragraph, those should all be inside red borders. Let's try this. I am going to refresh, and you can see sure enough, that's the case. All right, now let's go back and try the id selector, back to the code. Okay, so now I am going to put in list1 and that's this unordered list right here.

      So, now the list itself should have a border around it. Okay, let's refresh and sure enough that works. And then finally, let's one more. I am going to try all paragraphs that have class b assigned. All right, let's refresh and you can see that works just fine. Okay, so let's try some hierarchical ones now. Here we are in the system again and I am going to do the same thing. There is a file here called HierCombo. I am going to open that in my editor. Again, if you follow along with me, we are going to try some hierarchical relationships now.

      What I am going to do first is try get me paragraphs and list items that have b applied, and apply that CSS trick, so we can see it. Okay, and let's bring this up in the browser. Okay, and you can see that that works, all the paragraphs and everything with the b. All right, let's try the descendant operator. And the descendant operator basically will ask for things inside an unordered list, and list items with an a on them.

      I will just try that. Okay, we will refresh, and you can see that that worked. All right, now let's try the next operator. So, we are going to say get me the paragraph that's next to the unordered list. Refresh, and you can see that the first paragraph that was next to the list is now bordered. Okay, let's try the siblings one. For this one, I am going to say, let's see. How about whatever it is, let me get the list1 and get me the paragraph siblings of list1.

      So, all these paragraphs are siblings of list1. Let's try that and sure enough it works. Okay, so now you have seen how to use basic jQuery selectors. Let's move on now to Filters.

  • Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about jQuery Essential Training.

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    Q: When attempting to download jQuery, as the author does in the movie “Downloading and installing jQuery,” the file does not download. When any of the links on the download page are clicked, the browser opens a page of code instead.
    A: This sometimes happens when a web browser doesn't have the proper MIME type to prompt the user to download the file instead of open it directly. Therefore, the browser is opening the code instead of downloading it. If this occurs, download the file on a by Control-clicking (Mac) or right-clicking (Windows) on the download link and choosing the Save File option, which will download it to the computer.
    Q: Why do some of the examples use the form $("document") instead of just $(document)?
    A: jQuery's $(document).ready() function will work with either form. As a reminder, you can also just use the $() shorthand to accomplish the same thing:
    $(function() {
    // code to run when the document is ready
    Q: I am stuck on the first exercise in Chapter 1, video 3 "Creating a simple jQuery enabled page".

    Your example javascript code, both in the movie and in the exercise files,
    reads as follows:

    <script type="text/javascript">
    $("document").ready(function() {
    alert("The page just loaded!");

    This is not working for me.
    A: After jQuery 1.3.2, a change was made where quotes were no
    longer needed around the "document" argument to the jQuery $() function.

    Type the following instead.

    <script type="text/javascript">
    $(document).ready(function() {
    alert("The page just loaded!");
    Q: How do I remove the resize handle that appears on on <textarea> elements in some browsers, such as Firefox and Chrome?
    A: Some browsers automatically provide this feature for these text elements. You can disable this feature using CSS by providing a style rule for the element that specifies no resize behavior. Add the rule "resize: none;" to a stylesheet that is applied to the textarea, and the resize handle will not appear.

    Q: This course was updated on 5/24/2013. What changed?

    A: This update includes a new chapter on the jQuery AJAX features, new movies on associating data with page elements, and updates to the chapters on events and the jQuery UI plugin to reflect changes in JQuery 1.8.
    Q: In Chapter 7, for the "Using the Resizable effect" movie, the example code from the Groundswell_Final and Groundswell_Start folders isn't limiting the width of the window. What should I do?
    A: There's a bug in the example file. You need to add: 
    textarea { resize:none;}

    to the main.css file in the _css folder, and change the link tag in register.htm from:

    <link href="../_css/sunny/jquery-ui-1.7.2.custom.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" media="screen, projection" />


    <link href="../_css/sunny/jquery-ui-1.10.2.custom.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" media="screen, projection" />

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