jQuery and its cousins are great, and by all means use them if it makes it easier to develop your application.

If you're developing a library on the other hand, please take a moment to consider if you actually need jQuery as a dependency. Maybe you can include a few lines of utility code, and forgo the requirement. If you're only targeting more modern browsers, you might not need anything more than what the browser ships with.

At the very least, make sure you know what jQuery is doing for you, and what it's not. Some developers believe that jQuery is protecting us from a great demon of browser incompatibility when, in truth, post-IE8, browsers are pretty easy to deal with on their own.

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AJAX

Alternatives:

JSON

jQuery

$.getJSON('/my/url', function(data) {

});

IE8+

request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('GET', '/my/url', true);

request.onreadystatechange = function() {
  if (this.readyState === 4){
    if (this.status >= 200 && this.status < 400){
      // Success!
      data = JSON.parse(this.responseText);
    } else {
      // Error :(
    }
  }
};

request.send();
request = null;

IE9+

request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('GET', '/my/url', true);

request.onload = function() {
  if (request.status >= 200 && request.status < 400){
    // Success!
    data = JSON.parse(request.responseText);
  } else {
    // We reached our target server, but it returned an error

  }
};

request.onerror = function() {
  // There was a connection error of some sort
};

request.send();

IE10+

request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('GET', '/my/url', true);

request.onload = function() {
  if (this.status >= 200 && this.status < 400){
    // Success!
    data = JSON.parse(this.response);
  } else {
    // We reached our target server, but it returned an error

  }
};

request.onerror = function() {
  // There was a connection error of some sort
};

request.send();

Request

jQuery

$.ajax({
  type: 'GET',
  url: '/my/url',
  success: function(resp) {

  },
  error: function() {

  }
});

IE8+

request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('GET', '/my/url', true);

request.onreadystatechange = function() {
  if (this.readyState === 4){
    if (this.status >= 200 && this.status < 400){
      // Success!
      resp = this.responseText;
    } else {
      // Error :(
    }
  }
};

request.send();
request = null;

IE9+

request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('GET', '/my/url', true);

request.onload = function() {
  if (request.status >= 200 && request.status < 400){
    // Success!
    resp = request.responseText;
  } else {
    // We reached our target server, but it returned an error

  }
};

request.onerror = function() {
  // There was a connection error of some sort
};

request.send();

IE10+

request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('GET', '/my/url', true);

request.onload = function() {
  if (this.status >= 200 && this.status < 400){
    // Success!
    resp = this.response;
  } else {
    // We reached our target server, but it returned an error

  }
};

request.onerror = function() {
  // There was a connection error of some sort
};

request.send();

Post

jQuery

$.ajax({
  type: 'POST',
  url: '/my/url',
  data: data
});

IE8+

var request = new XMLHttpRequest();
request.open('POST', '/my/url', true);
request.setRequestHeader('Content-Type', 'application/x-www-form-urlencoded; charset=UTF-8');
request.send(data);

Effects

Alternatives:

Fade In

jQuery

$(el).fadeIn();

IE8+

function fadeIn(el) {
  var opacity = 0;

  el.style.opacity = 0;
  el.style.filter = '';

  var last = +new Date();
  var tick = function() {
    opacity += (new Date() - last) / 400;
    el.style.opacity = opacity;
    el.style.filter = 'alpha(opacity=' + (100 * opacity)|0 + ')';

    last = +new Date();

    if (opacity < 1) {
      (window.requestAnimationFrame && requestAnimationFrame(tick)) || setTimeout(tick, 16);
    }
  };

  tick();
}

fadeIn(el);

IE9+

function fadeIn(el) {
  el.style.opacity = 0;

  var last = +new Date();
  var tick = function() {
    el.style.opacity = +el.style.opacity + (new Date() - last) / 400;
    last = +new Date();

    if (+el.style.opacity < 1) {
      (window.requestAnimationFrame && requestAnimationFrame(tick)) || setTimeout(tick, 16)
    }
  };

  tick();
}

fadeIn(el);

IE10+

el.classList.add('show');
el.classList.remove('hide');
.show {
  transition: opacity 400ms;
}
.hide {
  opacity: 0;
}

Hide

jQuery

$(el).hide();

IE8+

el.style.display = 'none';

Show

jQuery

$(el).show();

IE8+

el.style.display = '';

Elements

Alternatives:

Add Class

jQuery

$(el).addClass(className);

IE8+

if (el.classList)
  el.classList.add(className);
else
  el.className += ' ' + className;

IE10+

el.classList.add(className);

After

jQuery

$(el).after(htmlString);

IE8+

el.insertAdjacentHTML('afterend', htmlString);

Append

jQuery

$(parent).append(el);

IE8+

parent.appendChild(el);

Before

jQuery

$(el).before(htmlString);

IE8+

el.insertAdjacentHTML('beforebegin', htmlString);

Children

jQuery

$(el).children();

IE8+

var children = [];
for (var i=el.children.length; i--;){
  // Skip comment nodes on IE8
  if (el.children[i].nodeType != 8)
    children.unshift(el.children[i]);
}

IE9+

el.children

Clone

jQuery

$(el).clone();

IE8+

el.cloneNode(true);

Contains

jQuery

$.contains(el, child);

IE8+

el !== child && el.contains(child);

Contains Selector

jQuery

$(el).find(selector).length;

IE8+

el.querySelector(selector) !== null

Each

jQuery

$(selector).each(function(i, el){

});

IE8+

function forEachElement(selector, fn) {
  var elements = document.querySelectorAll(selector);
  for (var i = 0; i < elements.length; i++)
    fn(elements[i], i);
}

forEachElement(selector, function(el, i){

});

IE9+

var elements = document.querySelectorAll(selector);
Array.prototype.forEach.call(elements, function(el, i){

});

Empty

jQuery

$(el).empty();

IE8+

while(el.firstChild)
  el.removeChild(el.firstChild);

IE9+

el.innerHTML = '';

Filter

jQuery

$(selector).filter(filterFn);

IE8+

function filter(selector, filterFn) {
  var elements = document.querySelectorAll(selector);
  var out = [];
  for (var i = elements.length; i--;) {
    if (filterFn(elements[i]))
      out.unshift(elements[i]);
  }
  return out;
}

filter(selector, filterFn);

IE9+

Array.prototype.filter.call(document.querySelectorAll(selector), filterFn);

Find Children

jQuery

$(el).find(selector);

IE8+

el.querySelectorAll(selector);

Find Elements

Alternatives:

jQuery

$('.my #awesome selector');

IE8+

document.querySelectorAll('.my #awesome selector');

Get Style

jQuery

$(el).css(ruleName);

IE8+

// Varies based on the properties being retrieved, some can be retrieved from el.currentStyle
// https://github.com/jonathantneal/Polyfills-for-IE8/blob/master/getComputedStyle.js

IE9+

getComputedStyle(el)[ruleName];

Get Attributes

jQuery

$(el).attr('tabindex');

IE8+

el.getAttribute('tabindex');

Get Html

jQuery

$(el).html();

IE8+

el.innerHTML

Get Outer Html

jQuery

$('<div>').append($(el).clone()).html();

IE8+

el.outerHTML

Get Text

jQuery

$(el).text();

IE8+

el.textContent || el.innerText

IE9+

el.textContent

Has Class

jQuery

$(el).hasClass(className);

IE8+

if (el.classList)
  el.classList.contains(className);
else
  new RegExp('(^| )' + className + '( |$)', 'gi').test(el.className);

IE10+

el.classList.contains(className);

Matches

jQuery

$(el).is($(otherEl));

IE8+

el === otherEl

Matches Selector

jQuery

$(el).is('.my-class');

IE8+

var matches = function(el, selector) {
  var _matches = (el.matches || el.matchesSelector || el.msMatchesSelector || el.mozMatchesSelector || el.webkitMatchesSelector || el.oMatchesSelector);

  if (_matches) {
    return _matches.call(el, selector);
  } else {
    var nodes = el.parentNode.querySelectorAll(selector);
    for (var i = nodes.length; i--;) {
      if (nodes[i] === el)
        return true;
    }
    return false;
  }
};

matches(el, '.my-class');

IE9+

var matches = function(el, selector) {
  return (el.matches || el.matchesSelector || el.msMatchesSelector || el.mozMatchesSelector || el.webkitMatchesSelector || el.oMatchesSelector).call(el, selector);
};

matches(el, '.my-class');

Offset

jQuery

$(el).offset();

IE8+

var rect = el.getBoundingClientRect()

{
  top: rect.top + document.body.scrollTop,
  left: rect.left + document.body.scrollLeft
}

Offset Parent

jQuery

$(el).offsetParent();

IE8+

el.offsetParent || el

Outer Height

jQuery

$(el).outerHeight();

IE8+

el.offsetHeight

Outer Height With Margin

jQuery

$(el).outerHeight(true);

IE8+

function outerHeight(el){
  var height = el.offsetHeight;
  var style = el.currentStyle || getComputedStyle(el);

  height += parseInt(style.marginTop) + parseInt(style.marginBottom);
  return height;
}

outerHeight(el);

IE9+

function outerHeight(el){
  var height = el.offsetHeight;
  var style = getComputedStyle(el);

  height += parseInt(style.marginTop) + parseInt(style.marginBottom);
  return height;
}

outerHeight(el);

Outer Width

jQuery

$(el).outerWidth();

IE8+

el.offsetWidth

Outer Width With Margin

jQuery

$(el).outerWidth(true);

IE8+

function outerWidth(el){
  var height = el.offsetWidth;
  var style = el.currentStyle || getComputedStyle(el);

  height += parseInt(style.marginLeft) + parseInt(style.marginRight);
  return height;
}

outerWidth(el);

IE9+

function outerWidth(el){
  var height = el.offsetWidth;
  var style = getComputedStyle(el);

  height += parseInt(style.marginLeft) + parseInt(style.marginRight);
  return height;
}

outerWidth(el);

Parent

jQuery

$(el).parent();

IE8+

el.parentNode

Position

jQuery

$(el).position();

IE8+

{left: el.offsetLeft, top: el.offsetTop}

Position Relative To Viewport

jQuery

var offset = el.offset();

{
  top: offset.top - document.body.scrollTop,
  left: offset.left - document.body.scrollLeft
}

IE8+

el.getBoundingClientRect()

Prepend

jQuery

$(parent).prepend(el);

IE8+

parent.insertBefore(el, parent.firstChild);

Remove

jQuery

$(el).remove();

IE8+

el.parentNode.removeChild(el);

Remove Class

jQuery

$(el).removeClass(className);

IE8+

if (el.classList)
  el.classList.remove(className);
else
  el.className = el.className.replace(new RegExp('(^|\\b)' + className.split(' ').join('|') + '(\\b|$)', 'gi'), ' ');

IE10+

el.classList.remove(className);

Replace From Html

jQuery

$(el).replaceWith(string);

IE8+

el.outerHTML = string;

Set Style

jQuery

$(el).css('border-width', '20px');

IE8+

// Use a class if possible
el.style.borderWidth = '20px';

Set Attributes

jQuery

$(el).attr('tabindex', 3);

IE8+

el.setAttribute('tabindex', 3);

Set Html

jQuery

$(el).html(string);

IE8+

el.innerHTML = string;

Set Text

jQuery

$(el).text(string);

IE8+

if (el.textContent !== undefined)
  el.textContent = string;
else
  el.innerText = string;

IE9+

el.textContent = string;

Siblings

jQuery

$(el).siblings();

IE8+

var siblings = Array.prototype.slice.call(el.parentNode.children);

for (var i = siblings.length; i--;) {
  if (siblings[i] === el) {
    siblings.splice(i, 1);
    break;
  }
}

IE9+

Array.prototype.filter.call(el.parentNode.children, function(child){
  return child !== el;
});

Toggle Class

jQuery

$(el).toggleClass(className);

IE8+

if (el.classList) {
  el.classList.toggle(className);
} else {
    var classes = el.className.split(' ');
    var existingIndex = -1;
    for (var i = classes.length; i--;) {
      if (classes[i] === className)
        existingIndex = i;
    }

    if (existingIndex >= 0)
      classes.splice(existingIndex, 1);
    else
      classes.push(className);

  el.className = classes.join(' ');
}

IE9+

if (el.classList) {
  el.classList.toggle(className);
} else {
  var classes = el.className.split(' ');
  var existingIndex = classes.indexOf(className);

  if (existingIndex >= 0)
    classes.splice(existingIndex, 1);
  else
    classes.push(className);

  el.className = classes.join(' ');
}

IE10+

el.classList.toggle(className);

Events

Off

jQuery

$(el).off(eventName, eventHandler);

IE8+

function removeEventListener(el, eventName, handler) {
  if (el.removeEventListener)
    el.removeEventListener(eventName, handler);
  else
    el.detachEvent('on' + eventName, handler);
}

removeEventListener(el, eventName, handler);

IE9+

el.removeEventListener(eventName, eventHandler);

On

jQuery

$(el).on(eventName, eventHandler);

IE8+

function addEventListener(el, eventName, handler) {
  if (el.addEventListener) {
    el.addEventListener(eventName, handler);
  } else {
    el.attachEvent('on' + eventName, function(){
      handler.call(el);
    });
  }
}

addEventListener(el, eventName, handler);

IE9+

el.addEventListener(eventName, eventHandler);

Ready

jQuery

$(document).ready(function(){

});

IE8+

function ready(fn) {
  if (document.addEventListener) {
    document.addEventListener('DOMContentLoaded', fn);
  } else {
    document.attachEvent('onreadystatechange', function() {
      if (document.readyState === 'interactive')
        fn();
    });
  }
}

IE9+

document.addEventListener('DOMContentLoaded', function(){

});

Trigger Custom

Alternatives:

jQuery

$(el).trigger('my-event', {some: 'data'});

IE8+

// Custom events are not natively supported, so you have to hijack a random
// event.
//
// Just use jQuery.

IE9+

if (window.CustomEvent) {
  var event = new CustomEvent('my-event', {detail: {some: 'data'}});
} else {
  var event = document.createEvent('CustomEvent');
  event.initCustomEvent('my-event', true, true, {some: 'data'});
}

el.dispatchEvent(event);

Trigger Native

jQuery

$(el).trigger('change');

IE8+

if (document.createEvent) {
  var event = document.createEvent('HTMLEvents');
  event.initEvent('change', true, false);
  el.dispatchEvent(event);
} else {
  el.fireEvent('onchange');
}

IE9+

// For a full list of event types: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/API/document.createEvent
event = document.createEvent('HTMLEvents');
event.initEvent('change', true, false);
el.dispatchEvent(event);

Utils

Array Each

jQuery

$.each(array, function(i, item){

});

IE8+

function forEach(array, fn) {
  for (i = 0; i < array.length; i++)
    fn(array[i], i);
}

forEach(array, function(item, i){

});

IE9+

array.forEach(function(item, i){

});

Bind

jQuery

$.proxy(fn, context);

IE8+

fn.apply(context, arguments);

IE9+

fn.bind(context);

Deep Extend

jQuery

$.extend(true, {}, objA, objB);

IE8+

var deepExtend = function(out) {
  out = out || {};

  for (var i = 1; i < arguments.length; i++) {
    var obj = arguments[i];

    if (!obj)
      continue;

    for (var key in obj) {
      if (obj.hasOwnProperty(key)) {
        if (typeof obj[key] === 'object')
          deepExtend(out[key], obj[key]);
        else
          out[key] = obj[key];
      }
    }
  }

  return out;
};

deepExtend({}, objA, objB);

Extend

Alternatives:

jQuery

$.extend({}, objA, objB);

IE8+

var extend = function(out) {
  out = out || {};

  for (var i = 1; i < arguments.length; i++) {
    if (!arguments[i])
      continue;

    for (var key in arguments[i]) {
      if (arguments[i].hasOwnProperty(key))
        out[key] = arguments[i][key];
    }
  }

  return out;
};

extend({}, objA, objB);

Index Of

jQuery

$.inArray(item, array);

IE8+

function indexOf(array, item) {
  for (var i = 0; i < array.length; i++) {
    if (array[i] === item)
      return i;
  }
  return -1;
}

indexOf(array, item);

IE9+

array.indexOf(item);

Is Array

jQuery

$.isArray(arr);

IE8+

isArray = Array.isArray || function(arr) {
  return Object.prototype.toString.call(arr) == '[object Array]';
}

isArray(arr);

IE9+

Array.isArray(arr);

Map

jQuery

$.map(array, function(value, index){

});

IE8+

function map(arr, fn) {
  var results = [];
  for (var i = 0; i < arr.length; i++)
    results.push(fn(arr[i], i));
  return results;
}

map(array, function(value, index){

});

IE9+

array.map(function(value, index){

});

Now

jQuery

$.now();

IE8+

new Date().getTime();

IE9+

Date.now();

Parse Html

jQuery

$.parseHTML(htmlString);

IE8+

var parseHTML = function(str) {
  var el = document.createElement('div');
  el.innerHTML = str;
  return el.children;
};

parseHTML(htmlString);

IE9+

var parseHTML = function(str) {
  var tmp = document.implementation.createHTMLDocument();
  tmp.body.innerHTML = str;
  return tmp.body.children;
};

parseHTML(htmlString);

Parse Json

jQuery

$.parseJSON(string);

IE8+

JSON.parse(string);

Trim

jQuery

$.trim(string);

IE8+

string.replace(/^\s+|\s+$/g, '');

IE9+

string.trim();

Type

jQuery

$.type(obj);

IE8+

Object.prototype.toString.call(obj).replace(/^\[object (.+)\]$/, "$1").toLowerCase();