Prototype tablekit beats jQuery tablesorter by a mile

Since I’m trying to become a better programmer, I’m updating my web site for a better user experience.   I originally built the pictures and recipes pages with SQL-based sorts, so that the user would click on a link that would reload the page with results sorted by the relevant column.

Since going to work on Tavawava, I’ve learned how to do this with Javascript.   I use the Prototype library there and when I needed to add sort functionality, I found the excellent TableKit plugin.   It’s easy to learn and quickly implements into almost any page (just add a class to any table that you want sorted, and it automatically picks up the fact that you want it sorted), and there are a lot of examples of usage on the web site.

Today when I decided to add the same functionality to, I started looking for something that would do the same thing under jQuery, because that’s the Javascript library I had started doing some basic javascript/AJAX stuff with, several months ago.   Everybody online pointed to Tablesorter, so I assumed that it would be as simple and enjoyable to work with as TableKit.   I was wrong.

With Tablesorter, I was able to get some functionality working pretty quickly, but I didn’t like how you had to specifically add a javascript call to document.ready() and ask for alternating colors, both of which automatically happen with TableKit.   The online documentation was confusing and skimpy.   During my coding process, I changed something that broke the sorting functionality.   The zebra striping still worked, but nothing I did brought back the sort.

Frustrated, I turned to TableKit, even though I’d never used Prototype on my web site.   I downloaded Prototype and TableKit and had them sorting my table within 5 minutes.   Now I’m thinking of using Prototype throughout

Overall, Prototype tablekit beats jQuery tablesorter by a mile.

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 7th, 2009 at 2:14 am and is filed under Programming. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply