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Part II: Dynamic HTML Reference > Document Object Reference

Chapter 9. Document Object Reference

This chapter focuses on objects—the scriptable entities that are maintained in a browser's memory whenever a document is loaded. An object is described by its properties, methods, collections (or arrays) of nested items, and event handlers. One of the most formidable problems facing Dynamic HTML authors these days is the way each browser brand turns the HTML of a document into objects that can be accessed and modified by scripts. The W3C working group covering the Document Object Model (DOM) specification is developing what may someday become a common denominator that all scriptable browsers will follow. In the meantime, there is a bewildering array of objects with varying levels of support in the different browsers by brand, operating system, and version.

To help you choose the right object, property, method, and event handler for the type of page development you're doing, this chapter lists every object defined by Netscape, Microsoft, and the W3C (at least through the working draft stage of the DOM standard). From these listings, you should be able to judge whether a particular object or terminology will work for your application. If cross-browser support is essential for your application, pay close attention to the browser support and version information for each entry. Be aware that some items may not be available on all operating system platforms for a particular browser brand and version. These distinctions are noted wherever the anomalous behavior could be substantiated by actual testing on the Win32 and Macintosh platforms.


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