Tech blog of Jon Ryan, Web Developer & Geek

Why I choose to ditch JQuery

For projects I work on from this point on I am going to (where possible) ditch JQuery. There are three big factors which made me come to this decision. They are…

  • Size
  • Speed
  • Simplicity


JQuery is about 90kb. Which isn’t particularly huge, but at the same time its bigger then 0kb. 90kb wouldn’t be an issue to me if I used every function contained within that 90k, but.. I don’t. I probably use 10% of it at most! It’s like buying a whole chocolate cake when you can only eat a single slice (or possibly two…). Why spend your precious resources on something unnecessarily large and expensive when you would be happy with just a fraction of it.

Most of the time the functions I use are:

  • Find element
  • Add/Remove Class
  • Get or set attribute (quite often a HTML5 data-attribute)
  • Do something funky with Ajax

..and thats about it. Other then that I tend to use the built in bootstrap Javascript functions like show a modal pop-up, show a tool-tip or popover, or hide collapse a section.

Does this require an entire library? I don’t think so.

###But if you use all the bootstrap Javascript functions then you need JQuery..

That’s what I thought as well…

However I cam across:

…which is basically a native Javascript version of the bootstrap functions. Win!


Vanilla/Native Javascript is quicker then JQuery at finding elements. Not by a little bit… by a mile!

Check out some speed comparisons like this one:

Not having to load the 90kb library will also of course mean a speed boost for the site.


This is the one I was torn about for a while, because:

  • JQuery is really easy to use. (Finding elements is easy and you chain function after function together and it just works)
  • JQuery gets around browser inconsistencies
  • It’s a faff writing 10 lines of Native Javascript when you can just write a single line of JQuery.

So what made me get over this and decide ditch it…?

Well, after watching an interesting video from a conference where Todd Motto spoke (Watch it here), I came across Apollo JS. A bunch of wrapper functions for vanilla Javascript that make adding and removing classes really easy. As easy as with JQuery.

So then I thought, why don’t I expand upon Apollo.js and make some simple helper functions to do all the things I used to do in JQuery. So I did and created SQuery. It uses a JQuery like syntax, with native Javascript speed and it’s small, at only 3kb.

So SQuery is:

  • Small (only 3kb)
  • Quick (uses native Javascript)
  • Simple (JQuery like syntax)

##Final Thoughts

Feel free to use SQuery in your projects. You can fork it and amend it as you see fit. Or alternatively give a go at making your own. I found it a very helpful learning experience.

Written on October 24, 2015