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How many people disable Javascript?

Hi,

I was wondering if there is a known statistic on how many people
disable javascript support from their client, and if they do is it
intentional or by some default, and when it is intentional what is the
reason behind it?

For example, I have disabled Flash support and I realize that a lot of
sites will just not even check if I support it or not and will just
show me a blank page, and they don't see to care/know about it.

Thanks,

Matty.

Nov 23 '05 #1
11 4865
matty wrote:
I was wondering if there is a known statistic on how many people
disable javascript support from their client,
No. Anything that calls itself a statistic in that regard is flawed.
See previous discussions on the matter.
and if they do is it intentional
It is.
or by some default,
It is. Administrators may have disabled client-side script on
all machines they are in charge of in order to ease their work.
and when it is intentional what is the reason behind it?
Script-kiddies and crackers that abuse language and DOM/AOM.
For example, I have disabled Flash support and I realize that a lot of
sites will just not even check if I support it or not and will just
show me a blank page, and they don't see to care/know about it.


Yes, sadly they do. There are a lot of incompetent people out there.
PointedEars
Nov 23 '05 #2
yb
Hi,

I'm not sure there is any reliable statistic. Someone may disable
javascript intentionally (e.g. annoyed with pop-ups, security concerns,
or perhaps disable it with new sites they don't trust yet). It some
cases, a system administrator may disable it for all users/employees.
And I suppose your site could get visits from web crawler or other
machine process.

I think its wise to provide some html navigation in your site, try to
make the content accessible, and accept that the users experience on
the site may be diminished. Perhaps inform them that your site is best
experienced in a javascript enabled browser.

Nov 23 '05 #3
matty wrote:
I was wondering if there is a known statistic on how
many people disable javascript support from their client,
Yes, lots (and some of them derived from some sort of (usually
unspecified) statistical process instead of just being made up on the
spot). The question is not whether there are numbers but rather are
those numbers accurate, representative, applicable, useful and/or
meaningful. There is no evidence to suggest that nay of them are; just
the trivial conclusion that it is more than none and less than all (for
which you don't really need a statistic).
and if they do is it intentional or by some default,
Intentionally, by accident and by default.
and when it is intentional what is the reason behind it?
Anything from 'because I can' to following security advice from the
likes of Microsoft.
For example, I have disabled Flash support and I realize
that a lot of sites will just not even check if I support
it or not and will just show me a blank page,
Rather than disabling javascript in IE I disable ActiveX (which takes
out Flash in the process), that results in a fair number of blank web
sites in itself (and increasingly when people draw the erroneous
conclusion that fall-backless AJAX is appropriate for public web-sites).
ActiveX it the thing that most IE vulnerabilities actually rely upon,
javascript without it is fairly safe.

Think of all the other things that may be on or off while javascript is
still available, deliberately, accidentally or by default. Pop-up
windows, cookies (session and in general, or scripted interactions with
the same), meta-refresh, writing to the clipboard, Java, and so on. All
of the permutations of browser settings that may influence the outcome
of scripted activity. The external software; proxies (local and remote),
firewalls, add-blockers, etc.

The world of browser scripting is not nearly as black and white as just
a matter of scripting being available or not.
and they don't see to care/know about it.


What, web developers/designers who neither know nor care? The very idea!
;-)

Richard.
Nov 23 '05 #4
Thank you all for your valuable responses. Is there a website you can
recommend that would discuss the best practices on falling back to
non-javascript (e.g. "say Too Bad", or have a page for javascript
enabled browsers and one for the others, or have a long explanation on
how to enable javascript, or ?)

Matty.

Nov 23 '05 #5
Don't believe any numbers - create your own statistics.

It's simple to extend e.g. a starting page working with and without
javascript. Insert a small script that's appending a hidden value to
forms and/or links and count the results at your server.

Once I tried this got 3 to 5 percent for groups of older aged network
and system administrators, no other users had access to the site.

Keep the different kind of users in mind. Please be careful, web robots
and crawler may fool you.

Intentional reasons to disable javascript may be security aspects,
blocking popups, incompatibilty between browsers (sometimes no script,
is much more better than broken scripts), and IMHO more and more
important accessibility reasons for older, youngest or disabled people.

Another aspect may be political. Rarely using javascript made it even to
a sales argument.

Stefan
matty wrote:
Hi,

I was wondering if there is a known statistic on how many people
disable javascript support from their client, and if they do is it
intentional or by some default, and when it is intentional what is the
reason behind it?

For example, I have disabled Flash support and I realize that a lot of
sites will just not even check if I support it or not and will just
show me a blank page, and they don't see to care/know about it.

Thanks,

Matty.

Nov 23 '05 #6
matty wrote:
Thank you all for your valuable responses. Is there a website you can
recommend that would discuss the best practices on falling back to
non-javascript
Try

<URL:http://groups.google.c om/groups?as_q=gra ceful+OR+gracef ully+degradatio n+OR+degrade&as _ugroup=comp.la ng.javascript&s coring=d&filter =0>
(e.g. "say Too Bad",
That is not what is called _graceful_ degradation.
or have a page for javascript enabled browsers and one for the others,
Neither this
or have a long explanation on how to enable javascript,
nor this.
or ?)


See above.
HTH

PointedEars
Nov 23 '05 #7

Thomas 'PointedEars' Lahn wrote:

Try

<URL:http://groups.google.c om/groups?as_q=gra ceful+OR+gracef ully+degradatio n+OR+degrade&as _ugroup=comp.la ng.javascript&s coring=d&filter =0>


LOL I would have never thought of using the word "degradatio n" !
Thanks :)

Matty.

Nov 23 '05 #8
Stefan Finzel wrote:
<snip>
and IMHO more and more
important accessibility reasons for older, youngest or disabled people.

</snip>

That's what I actually had in mind, I wanted my development to be
considering disabled people from the start, and I was wondering if
Javascript would be a good or a bad thing.

Thinking about it after reading the answers I realize that what i'm
trying to achieve has nothing to do with having Javascript or not, I
just need to concentrate on the usability, and whether or not I use
javascript for making my website "usable" is irrelevant for that
particular purpose.

Matt.

Nov 23 '05 #9
Stefan Finzel wrote:
Don't believe any numbers - create your own statistics.
It is impossible to do that in a way other than to retrieve reliable,
representative data. Only a representative public-opinion poll can do that.
It's simple to extend e.g. a starting page working with and without
javascript. Insert a small script that's appending a hidden value to
forms and/or links and count the results at your server.
Which bears exactly no meaning regarding potential future visitors of this
site and other sites, for example. It does not qualify as statistics at
all, let alone qualifying as an educated forecast.
Once I tried this got 3 to 5 percent for groups of older aged network
and system administrators, no other users had access to the site.
And what do you think that would mean?
[...]
Another aspect may be political. Rarely using javascript made it even to
a sales argument.


Could you elaborate on that?
PointedEars
Nov 23 '05 #10

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