jQuery vs Prototype

We have already talked about the battle between Flash and jQuery. There were a few obvious differences between the two and in the end it was all about personal preference and the needs of the developer. Now it is time to take a closer look at these two very similar JavaScript frameworks: jQuery and Prototype. While Prototype has the upper hand when it comes to fan base, jQuery is gaining ground and it won’t be long until the two frameworks will be equally attractive to programmers.

Why is It So Important?

Most people who go to a website know nothing about what it takes to create it. In fact, the large majority of internet users couldn’t tell if a website was created with Flash or with HTML. For anyone who is even remotely interested in web design, it is quite obvious that using the right framework for your needs is necessary if you want to create high quality projects and if you don’t want to waste your time during the process. If there is a clear winner between jQuery and Prototype, most programmers will surely migrate towards the best option and the overall quality of your everyday website will gradually increase.

File Size

One of the most significant differences between jQuery and Prototype is the resulting file size. Even in the world of high speed internet, keeping your files as small as possible is crucial and it seems that jQuery wins in this department. Coding the same elements will take fewer lines most of the time and the result will be around 7 to 10 times small than what you will would get from Prototype. This fact alone is enough to make people consider switching to jQuery, but there are a few other things that you need to consider before you make your move.

What Do Experts Say?

As usual, those who really know what they’re talking about will quickly come to the conclusion that Prototype might have a few flaws, but they can be easily overlooked. If you are dealing with a massive project and you need to make sure that your framework will handle the abuse of multiple expert coders, Prototype seems to be the proper choice. Even so, jQuery is not that far behind and it is certainly growing at a faster rate than Prototype.

How To Decide On Your Own

If you are a programmer and you haven’t made up your mind yet, you have to give both of these frameworks a chance to prove themselves. Even if you are only planning on using each of them for a couple of weeks, it won’t be long until you will start building a preference, whether it is based on performance or on usability.


In the end, it seems that most battles tend to end in a draw, especially when it comes to programming. People will always have their preferences and it seems that it will be long until someone will bring something truly innovative to the table.