Avoid script collisions via namespaces

If you plan to use a JS function named something generic like “update()”, then you run the risk of another engineer on your team unknowlingly writing a same-named function and killing yours.  Just as bad, some external party like an ad vendor might have script with the same name.

Another problem is when you have to maintain someone else’s code, and figure out where “update()” is defined.

To avoid such problems, put all your methods in object(s) that are named after your dev team and that suggest what file they are defined in.  Furthermore, make the name specific enough to indicate the specific functionality.  For example, change “update()” to

var aol = {wsl: {
fUpdatePagesDropdown: function(sNewDefaultId) {


If I see a JS call that starts “aol.wsl.”, I immediately know it’s defined in lite.js.  Similarly, if I have inline script in a page like Compose, I’ll create a namespace called “aolCompose”.

btw, I like putting the commas before object properties, because it helps me remember not to put a comma after the last property — which is a common source of hard-to-debug problems.

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