Javascript Can Wreck Havoc With Blogs

Over the last bunch of days, sometimes my blog has been very slow to access. I wasn’t sure what it was, though, so I started doing some testing, and it seems that the lethargy has been tracked down to incompatibility of javascript created items that I’ve been adding to my blog.

Of course, we all have a lot of javascript things on our blogs if we’re monetizing them. Adsense is a javascript program. Widget Bucks is a javascript program. Chitika is a javascript program. I’ve had Adsense almost forever, and my blog never ran this slow. I’m not sure about either Widget Bucks or Chitika. I had two other minor things on my blog, both from Grader.com, and I took those off because each one was a javascript program.

Not that talking about javascript slowing down blogs is new. A blog post that probably didn’t get the attention it deserved comes from Alex Iskold’s Technology blog, where he wrote a post titled How Javascript Is Slowing Down The Web. In it, he talks about the problems that can occur when multiple “single” lines of javascript code come together from varying sources. He talks about how javascript performs things sequentially and not concurrently, and that anytime a piece of JavaScript is being loaded or evaluated, everything else has to wait.

Now, supposedly there’s things that can be done for different browsers, but none of those things are absolutes. That, plus it’s very technical stuff; most of us regular folks won’t understand it, let alone what to do with it. However, something I’m speculating is that when there’s two javascript programs next to each other, that’s when things have an opportunity to fail, even if the same company created both programs. When I first removed the Widget Bucks affiliate banner that was sitting next to their skyboard banner, this blog was running much faster. Since then, though, it seems to go up and down. Frankly, I’m not really sure what to do next, other than removing all javascript programs, and that’s not about to happen. It’s possible that it’s related to either the LinkXL or Kontera ads that have recently started running on this blog also; I’m just not really sure.

Luckily, the slowdown time is infrequent, so I hope it doesn’t overly disturb anyone. However, if it starts bothering me often enough, I’m going to start moving things around some more, trying to make sure there’s some kind of distance between all the javascript that’s going on. At least the Daily Puppy widget isn’t javascript; aren’t they cute? Anyway, Chris Pirillo of Lockergnome talks about how javascript works in web browsers, so I’m sharing that here; enjoy!

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26 comments on “Javascript Can Wreck Havoc With Blogs

    • I’ve done some things, Sire, such as removing one of the Widget Bucks widgets, now removing the puppies widget (it was killing IE users), and I added a new plugin, WP Super Cache, which is supposed to help the site load faster for visitors. I just loaded that, though, so we’ll see how well it really works.

  • hi Mitch,
    I haven’t been able to open your blog in IE6 for a few days, but could in Firefox. It works now in IE6, so I’m guessing it was the same thing. I hesitate to admit that I still use IE6 on my main computer. I hate upgrading but I think I’ll install Firefox on it since IE6 is having issues with more and more websites…
    Steve, aka the IE6 trade show guru

    Trade Show Guru´s last blog post..Five Keys to Marketing Success

    • Truthfully Steve, I wish someone had said something earlier about IE. I got an email from someone about it this morning, so I opened mine and I couldn’t get in. So I tested my scripts and the one breaking things was my puppies; sniff! So, the puppies are gone, but now my site can be read in IE once more.

      I won’t pick on you for not having Firefox, but I might pick on you for not upgrading to IE7. Your version has lots of holes where hackers could get into your computer if you’re using it all the time. Just thought I’d let you know.

  • hi Mitch,
    In the past when I mentioned to websites or blogs that I’m still using IE6 and having problems with their site, the response always seems to be “what kind of caveman/idiot still uses IE6” so I stopped commenting. I just hate upgrading software since I often run into problems (if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it). I’m going to install Firefox on my main computer though because I’ve heard of some cool plugins I want to try. Thanks for mentioning the security risk. I had no idea. I suppose I’ve been lucky, but I don’t want to have to count on that continuing…
    Steve, aka the soon-to-be Firefox trade show guru

    Trade Show Guru´s last blog post..Five Keys to Marketing Success

    • John, I fully understand your reluctance in not wanting to switch. I wrote earlier this year about my reticence in switching to FF3. But they resolved almost all of my issues with it, and of course they’re not going to support it at the beginning of the year, so moving to FF3 wasn’t going to be much of a security option at that point. And with IE going to version 8 pretty soon, I know you weren’t going to get any more security updates for IE6. Sometimes it’s better safe, if you know what I mean.

  • Mitch,

    You have a ton of 3rd party ads and icons. Perhaps one of them wants to load before your webpage loads and if the 3rd part connection is slow, it will slow your site.

    When I have AdBlock Plus enabled your site loads much faster.

    John Lessnau´s last blog post..Twitter Tweets about Content is King as of November 24, 2008

    • Hi John. Since I removed the puppy widget, the site should be running much faster. At least it is for me on Firefox, and it did with IE 7 for me also. Adblock Plus will work wonders for many people, but I wonder which ads it’ll block.

  • John Lessnau says:

    It blocks just about all ads. It won’t block links in content though 😉

    John Lessnau´s last blog post..Twitter Tweets about LinkBait as of November 24, 2008

    • Just so you and everyone else knows, I already have this plugin. I use it on every site I visit until I get a look at it, then I decide whether to turn it off for that site or not. Doesn’t seem to stop pop-unders or those annoying requests to subscribe to a newsletter, unfortunately.

    • Oh; glad you cleared that up. Actually, that puppy widget really did hang things up all the time, so it did have to go. Right now, the Widget Bucks ad does take the longest, and I may still want to switch back to the other one because I like how it finds where the lowest priced gas is.

  • John Lessnau says:

    Since I am in the ad business I rarely have the plugin turned on. I need to see who is advertising where.

    Ad block is not a popup blocker. You may want to check your Firefox pop up blocking settings.

    Yeah I hate those floating “subscribe to this website ads” If they are being served externally you could do a special filter for it.

    John Lessnau´s last blog post..Twitter Tweets about bailout as of November 24, 2008

    • I’ve checked mine; nope, nothing stopping them, unfortunately. Even a secondary popup blocker I’m running can’t stop those things; irritating as anything.

      And, to tell you the truth, I use Adblock for very sites after I’ve visited them, but CNN is one that I have to keep it on for.

  • John Lessnau says:

    There may be something you can do in the .htaccess to have your page load first before all your ads and widgets.

    Or you could place them in iframes so they load independently of your main page. (I believe adsense does the iframe thing.)

    I’m no expert on this though.

    John Lessnau´s last blog post..Twitter Tweets about stock market as of November 24, 2008

    • Well, for the moment, I’ve taken Widget Bucks totally off the blog. I have no idea why it’s running like this, though; it’s not messing with anyone else’s blog that’s running it right now.

  • work at home ideas says:

    Hi Mitch,
    Sometimes I do have this problem too whenever I load a new widget. Also I noticed IE behaves very differently from FF (that’s why I seldom use it) especially with loading pictures. Sometimes it messes things up and I have to reduce the size just so it shows up in IE. Currently I’m having some problem possibly with my ISP, not blog. My blog’s logo and banner ads (only those hosted by me)are not showing). Could you do me a favor. Go to my blog and see if you are able to view the logo and banner ads.

    Thanks Mitch
    Peter Lee

    work at home ideas´s last blog post..Discover 10 WordPress Plugins That Make Readers Repeat Visitors

    • I hope you can figure out your issues, Peter, but at least, for now, the rest of us can see your site.

      As for me, I’ve just added one of my Widget Bucks things again, putting it into its own “widget”, so to speak, and it seems to be working just fine now. At least, it’s working fine for me.

      • It actually made me some money, but I’ve finally had to remove it from here, unfortunately. Too bad, because I liked knowing where the cheap gas was locally.

  • The Smiling Blogger says:

    It’s true, Mitch…those widgets are notoriously slowing down your site’s loading time. It’s one of the reasons I took Entrecard off my blog. In this case, less is always more.

    Yan

    • You know, Yan, the funny thing is that if I’d thought back I’d have remembered that’s why I’d switched all of my Commission Junction ads on another site from javascript to HTML, because it was slowing them down back at the time. I wish more of these companies would give you two choices. I guess it’s something else we’ll all have to make our choices about, since it’s hard to totally get rid of it.

  • work at home ideas says:

    I was about to give Entrecard another chance. I guess Yan’s comment sealed its fate.

    Peter Lee

    work at home ideas´s last blog post..How “Work From Home Ideas” Made Google Top 10

    • The Smiling Blogger says:

      Well, the same thing I did mention to you months ago, Peter. Take away as much widgets as you can from your blog. Unless it’s converting clicks into cash, if not, seal its fate…;)

      Yan

    • Peter, I’ve never even entertained the idea of Entrecard. I’ve always thought it looked like way too much work.

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