Does an era of responsive website design call for a plunge into the popularity of jQuery?

Over the last few years, mobile users have successfully overtaken desktop users. More websites are adopting a responsive design with strong CSS additions. Responsiveness is not JavaScript or jQuery. It is the concept of making your website look good on all devices. The evolution of smart devices means more people are ready to access your site on the go. Therefore, you need to be prepared to serve them a beautiful and fully functioning website on their respective devices. Does that mean you need to do away with jQuery? Not! A media query is an integral part of responsive website design, and you can use media query (as a CSS module) with jQuery as well.

How can you use jQuery for creating responsive designs?

These CSS Media queries allow you to target the CSS elements including device orientation, display density and size accurately. You can use CSS Media Queries for creating a responsive website, tweaking content for iOS devices or optimizing the content for a remote printer. It includes block CSS properties, only when certain conditions hold true. For example – you might have noticed how the background color of certain apps or websites changes as per the pixel density or screen size of mobile devices. This is a very common use of CSS media queries to render website elements for smartphone devices.

These can handle the modern responsive layout and designs pretty well. However, changing chunks of functions based on screen size is currently much easier with jQuery. There are no available methods that can provide the developer with accurate screen sizes in real-time, but the top web design in New York uses third-party libraries like Modernizr in conjunction with jQuery to implement your CSS media queries.

JQuery has inbuilt functions as well that help in creating responsive layouts. For example – the $(window) object can help you create ideal website layout as per the window size in an easy if-else-if format. Now, there is one persistent issue with the $(window) .width() function. It is unable to return the accurate value of the screen as it also accounts for things that are not a part of the real size like scroll bars and the body padding of the device.

Spice up your jQuery experience

Here, libraries like the Modernizr helps to return the accurate information about the screen size and helps you check if the browser window on the device matches any media query. You can call the “resize” function on the initial load and the resize event. You must always remember that this function will only support the valid media queries. So, if a browser does not support media queries, you can get to know that by using Modernizer coupled with jQuery as well.

Modernizr is a detector or a UA sniffing JavaScript code that can detect the availability of next-gen web technologies on a device. This set of code can determine if the browser version on the device your visitor is using right now has the features that your website needs to be completely functional. It checks whether a new feature works on the visitor’s browser and returns the query with a true or false result. Modernizr is a unique JavaScript library that can work with jQuery to make up for the difference in devices and browser technology.

Plug-ins that will always help you design responsive websites

Designing responsive layouts doesn’t need be as complicated as most developers make it out to be. Unless you are using no frameworks at all or trying to create your framework for responsive designs you can always opt for jQuery plug-ins for entirely responsive results.


This is a very effective design plug-in for all JavaScript and jQuery users. Doubletake can detect the browser width and update the SRC of your images. You can start with a minimal mobile-friendly photo and assign multiple sets of breakpoints to it. Doubletake will take care of the image SRC updates whenever necessary.

Jquery Responsive Thumbnail Gallery

This is another plug-in that website designers love and use all the time. This enables defining each image in 2 sizes. You have the liberty to set a breakpoint. According to the screen size, this plug-in decides which image the website needs to display. You can just link to the script and apply it to the DOM element.

Adaptive Media

Are you thinking of editing your entire image gallery? Desktop-centric images do load slowly and cost a lot of visitors. They can increase the downloading time by 2 seconds or more at times. However, that does not mean you have to do away with your images for new ones. You can optimize them for responsive layouts with adaptive media. This plug-in also allows you to create more than one image from a single source for the different screen sizes!

This is a super cool jQuery plug-in for all kinds of dynamic layouts that you can achieve by CSS only. This plug-in will allow you to select several elements, hide them or display them as per screen width. You will be able to reorder them as per necessity of display individually. This powerful plug-in allows all jQuery users to revisit filtering, layout and sorting options in website design.

Heads-up Grid

The name is quite self-explanatory – the Heads Up Grid enables designers to edit websites within browsers. You can select any particular browser, open your site and start editing, rearranging and adding elements as per the necessity of the browser layouts. It is a responsive overlay grid that makes responsive website design a breeze.

Although responsive designs are not entirely new in the world of web design, they pose a formidable challenge to the media-heavy sites. You can mitigate the disparity between the technology that can determine browser width and the website design technology that can return the correct value of media with the help of jQuery coupled with Modernizr and with the help of an array of select plug-ins including the five we have mentioned above.

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Barrack Diego is a freelance content writer and works for web design in New York. He has written many good and informative articles on different categories such as Web Design, SEO and Business. He is very responsible towards his job. He loves to share his knowledge and experience with his friends and colleagues.