Zend Framework: Inject JavaScript Code in a Action/View

There is a view helper that can inject a head or inline script into your code.

Simply by putting some JavaScript code into the view script wont do the job, because the .phtml file is grabbed and parsed by the Zend Framework and thus the code there wont be parsed as JavaScript and it wont be executed as well by the browser.

The Most Simple Way …

is to put some place holder into the layout .phtml file and than from the controller’s action you can assign some JS code:

// layout.phtml
<?php
...
echo $this->layout()->scriptTags;
...
<?php
 
class IndexController extends Zend_Controller_Action
{
	public function indexAction() 
	{
		$this->view->layout()->scriptTags = '<script src="my.js"></script>';	
	}	
}

Solution No. 2

Although the first solution is correct it’s not the most clearest way, because you put the JavaScript code into the PHP, and this sooner or later becomes a mess.

<?php
 
class IndexController extends Zend_Controller_Action
{
	public function indexAction() 
	{
		$this->view->layout()->scriptTags = '<script src="my.js"></script>';
						  . '<script>alert("here\'s my" + "test")</script>';
	}	
}

The IDE is not highlighting the code, and you’ve to deal with too many quotes, which is bad! There is a better solution however – the inline script:

// script tags
/* @var $scripts Zend_View_Helper_InlineScript */
$scripts = $this->view->inlineScript();
$scripts->appendFile('my.js');

Simply the Best

Yeah, the best solution is something even better than the second one. Although the solution I’ve just mentioned is fine for including JS files, when you’ve to add some JS code you’ll have to put it again into the PHP.

$msg = 'some dynamically generated message';
 
// script tags
/* @var $scripts Zend_View_Helper_InlineScript */
$scripts = $this->view->inlineScript();
$scripts->appendFile('my.js');
$scripts->appendScript('alert("' . $msg . '")');

If there’s no relation between JavaScript and PHP you can simply put all this code into a separate .js file and load it from there. This is by the way the best solution because the file is cached by the browser, if the cache is enabled. But most of the time you perhaps have to send some variables from PHP to the JavaScript code.

It would be perfect if you had some kind of a variable placeholders – exactly as you have it in the Zend Framework’s view scripts!

Another View

This is completely possible – just forget about the default view – it renders the view script and it’s bind to the /views/scripts folder. You can make another, completely new, view instead! Here’s some source:

$view = new Zend_View();
$view->setBasePath('path_to_the_js_folder');
 
$view->msg = 'Some dynamically generated message';
 
// script tags
/* @var $scripts Zend_View_Helper_InlineScript */
$scripts = $this->view->inlineScript();
$scripts->appendFile('my.js');
$scripts->appendScript($view->render('inline.js'));

Thus now in the JS file you can have some placeholders!

// inline.js
 
// some js code
// ...
alert('<?php echo $this->msg ?>');

5 thoughts on “Zend Framework: Inject JavaScript Code in a Action/View

  1. Thanks for this very useful post! =D

    By the way, how am I going to make a confirmation box? The one wherein user will be prompted of an action, then he needs to respond with either a yes or a no. How would I get what he selected?

  2. Hi,

    i am very new to PHP,JavaScript and Zend Framework. I tried your example, but it doesn’t works for me. I don’t understand how you came from “Solution 2” to “Simply the Best”. Could you explain the steps more detailled?

    Greets Ronald

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