The core apostrophe object (browser side)

The apos object

Apostrophe always creates an apos object and attaches it to the window object in the browser, making it globally available.

Most of Apostrophe's browser-side functionality is implemented by its individual modules, many of which can be accessed through aliases on the apos object, such as apos.utils or apos.ui.

This article is a reference guide to the options and methods of the browser-side apos object itself. Most of the time you'll be more interested in Apostrophe's modules.

This article is not the right place to start learning Apostrophe. For that, see the getting started tutorial.

Since Apostrophe is responsible for generating the webpage, there will only be one apos object in the browser.



The name of a cookie used to implement Angular-style CSRF protection, which is applied to all jQuery ajax operations.

Automatically set based on the project's shortName if not otherwise configured as an option to the apostrophe-express module on the server side.


modules is an object in which the keys are the names of Apostrophe modules and the values are objects. Usually the properties of this object set options for the module and become available in its own options object.

Not all Apostrophe modules have a browser-side object; only those that require one to implement a UI. And many have one only if a user is logged in.


Passed through to the browser by the server, apos.prefix will match its value on the server side if a site is running as a "virtual subdirectory." Apostrophe also automatically adjusts jQuery's AJAX behavior to respect the prefix and provides apos.ui.redirect, a convenience method that prepends the prefix to whatever is passed to it. So in most cases you will not need to prepend this yourself. See the prefix option.


The instance of moog that powers apos.create, apos.define, etc. on the browser side, providing object-oriented programming features. Can also be used directly (apos.synth.create, etc).



Refreshes the div with the data-apos-refreshable attribute, which will typically contain everything except the Apostrophe admin bar. Apostrophe will refetch the page via an AJAX request and the server will automatically use its ajaxLayout to return only that portion of the page.

In addition, a change event is emitted on the apos object, which receives what.type if what is an object, and otherwise receives what directly.

Typically apos.change is invoked by the "edit" modals of pieces in order to refresh content on the page that might potentially include the piece that was just modified. This makes the editing experience feel more seamless by avoiding the need for a manual page refresh.

create(typeName, optionsObject, [callback])

Creates an object. Specifically, an instance of any moog type that is defined on the browser side. You will see apos.create calls when you peek at "view source" because server-side modules push them to create singletons that provide their UI.

The callback is optional, provided that neither the type you are creating nor any of its base classes take a callback in their constructor. If there is a callback it will receive (err, object).

See also createModule.

createModule(type, options, alias)

Creates a singleton instance of the named module on the browser side by invoking apos.create. The module is made available as a property of the apos object with the specified alias, if any, and is instantiated with the provided options. The module is also made available as a property of apos.modules under its full name.

To avoid problems with double-registration of event handlers when the main body of the content is refreshed, if the module already exists in apos.modules it is not re-created.

Many, but not all, modules push a call to this method from the server side; you will see those calls in "view source."

Typical modules have a user.js file on the browser side, which invokes apos.define with the same type name as the module. This method is used to actually create the object, after project-level code and other modules have had a chance to extend the definition via implicit subclassing.


This method enables CSRF protection for all AJAX operations carried out via jQuery. A call to this method is pushed automatically by the apostrophe-assets module.


This method automatically prefixes any AJAX operations carried out via jQuery with apos.prefix, if the prefix option was set when configuring the project. A call to this method is pushed automatically by the apostrophe-assets module.

define(typeName, definitionObject)

Defines a new moog type on the browser side. apos.define is seen in every core module that does browser-side work. Its use allows easy subclassing and enhancement at the project level. An alias for apos.synth.define. Many of the core Apostrophe source files on the browser side consist entirely of an apos.define call. The object is then created later via apos.create.

The definitionObject looks exactly like an index.js file on the server side, with properties to set default values for options and often beforeConstruct, construct and afterConstruct functions. Both the browser and the server rely on moog to support highly flexible object-oriented programming.

emit(eventName, args...)

Apostrophe provides an event mechanism. The apos.emit method takes an event name and additional, optional arguments and invokes all event listeners for that event name. Apostrophe emits many events on the browser side.


Returns true if the specified moog type is defined. An alias for apos.synth.isDefined.


Prints a message to console.log, gracefully doing nothing in browsers that do not provide console.log.


An alias for apos.synth.mirror. See moog.

on(eventName, fn)

Registers an event handler to be invoked when the named event is emitted (see emit). The event handler function will receive any additional arguments passed to emit.

Frequently used events include:

off(eventName, fn)

Removes the specified event handler from the list of event handlers for the named event (see on).


The apostrophe-templates module will push a call to this method automatically, via the pageReadyWhenCalm method, when loading a new page or refreshing data-apos-refreshable. This method emits the ready and enhance events.


Invokes pageReady after first waiting for jQuery's DOMready event and then waiting for "next tick" via setImmediate. This allows time for code in your own JavaScript files to run first and potentially patch or replace core functionality. A call to this method is pushed automatically by the apostrophe-templates module.

redefine(typeName, definitionObject)

Redefines a moog type on the browser side, throwing out any previous definition rather than implicitly subclassing as a second call to apos.define would do.

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