I just got back from the jQuery conference in San Francisco. Wow, what an event. In addition to some incredible talks, I had the opportunity to speak with Rey Bango, Johnathon Sharp, and, of course, John Resig. Any conference where you get to talk to some of the most influential people in jQuery is a win in my book. The “High Performance JQuery” presentation especially caught my attention when the speaker, Robert Duffy, said that
.show() were slower than changing the css directly. Not having occasion to ask him why, I benchmarked the various ways to hide DOM elements and looked into the jQuery source to find out what is going on.
The HTML I tested against was a page of 100 div tags with a class and some content, I cached the selector
$('div') to use with each method to exclude the time needed to find all the div elements on the page from the test. I used jQuery 1.4.2 for the testing, but keep in mind that the algorithms behind the method calls can change dramatically from version to version. What is true for 1.4.2 is not necessarily true for other versions of the library.
The methods I tested were
.removeClass('hide'). I also tested modifying an attribute of a