Getting started with jQuery

It's very easy to get started with jQuery. We'll cover the most direct basic method here and in the next chapter, we'll explore a few other ways to work with jQuery in WordPress.

Downloading from the jQuery site

If you head over to the jQuery site at, you'll find that the home page offers you two download options: production and development libraries of version 1.4.2, the most current stable version available at the time of this writing.

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Getting Started With jQuery

♦ Using jQuery with other libraries

♦ jQuery Documentation

Developer Resources

♦ Pluein Authoring

♦ Submit a New Bug Report

The production version has been compressed and "minified" into a smaller file size that will load much more quickly. It weighs in at 24KB. The development version, which hasn't been compressed, comes in at 155KB. That's quite a bit larger, but it's much easier to open up and read if you ever run into a debugging problem and should need to.

The ideal scenario is, that you're supposed to use the development version of jQuery while creating your site, and when you release it live, switch over to the production version, which will load much more quickly. Many of you will probably never want to look inside the jQuery library, but it's a good idea to download both anyway. In the event your debugging process keeps showing you a line of code in the jQuery library that is giving you problems, you can switch over to the development version to see more clearly what the line of code is trying to do. I can tell you, the odds that something in the jQuery library has a bug in it is slim! It will almost always be your jQuery script or plugin that has the problem, but being able to look at the full jQuery library may give you an insight as to what's wrong with your script's code and why the library can't work with it. There's no difference between the production and development libraries, just file size and human readability.

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Download: jQuery 1.3.2 (Minified)

Uploaded bv: ieresiQ Uploaded: Feb 19, 2000 Downloads: 6691-1285 Type-Source 55.9 kb

SHA1 Checksum: 3dc9f?c2642effM4B2e66c9tt9df874bf98f5bct> Tip: Use the SHA1 checksum shown to verify file integrity

On jQuery's home page, when you click on Download, you'll be taken over to the Google code site. You can then go back and select the other version for download. Note that the library is not zipped or packaged in any way. It downloads the actual .js JavaScript file ready to be placed into your development environment and used. If you click on the Download button and see the jQuery code appear in your browser, just hit the back button and right-click or control-click, and then click on Save Target As to download it.

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Using Visual Studio?

If your code/HTML editor happens to be Visual Studio, you can download an additional documentation file that will work in Visual Studio and give you access to comments embedded into the library. This allows the Visual Studio editor to have statement completion, sometimes called IntelliSense, when writing your jQuery scripts.

To download the definitions file, click on the blue Download tab at the top of the home page. On the Download jQuery page, you'll find the link to the Visual Studio documentation file in the most current release.

You'll place this file in the same location as the jQuery library you downloaded (production or development) and it should now work with your Visual Studio editor.

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