What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of JavaScript?

Advantages of using JavaScript include ease of syntax, versatility, processing speed and access to extensive JavaScript libraries in the public domain. Disadvantages may include security risks and interoperability issues between user systems.

JavaScript is a powerful scripting language because it runs code on the client side rather than the server side. This means that it can render and calculate user data dynamically and near-instantaneously without having to wait for instructions from the server. Although this improves the processing speed, it opens up security vulnerabilities as well. If malicious JavaScript executes completely within the client’s system, then that system can be exploited. Many people disable JavaScript for this reason and because of privacy concerns such as cookie installation and tracking by third-party systems.

Another popular feature of JavaScript is its highly approachable and human-readable syntax. This high-level language is so abstracted from machine language, it’s more akin to conversational English. This is seen as a strong asset by many developers, but not all. Although its high-level readability makes it accessible, powerful and easy to deploy, many developers contend it dilutes the critical thinking patterns and tool-building skills necessary to succeed as a versatile developer.

JavaScript is loosely typed and not highly standardized, although there are extensive JavaScript libraries and frameworks available. This can shorten the development cycle, but can also lead to varied results depending on the client system processing the code. For developers, less stringent syntactical and typing standards means less coding time since they do not have to classify and categorize every function specifically to be read by a compiler later. For users, however, these practices may result in specific browsers functioning differently than others, even using the same scripts.