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Front-end Challenge: Prevent Clicks

twitter logo github logo Updated on ・1 min read

This is a challenge for frontend developers. Test your DOM manipulation and CSS skills.

Create two functions,

addBlocker()

  • Should block all clicks on the page. Nothing should be clickable anymore.
  • Should print the current mouse position on viewport, and the current element under the mouse on click.

removeBlocker()

  • Should remove the blocker created by addBlocker(), everything should be clickable as before adding the blocker.

The two functions should work on any website including, dev.to and producthunt.com

Here is a video preview of what should be done.

Share your code in the comment section or in a github gist.

Good luck!

twitter logo DISCUSS (12)
markdown guide
 

I was tempted to do something like this initially, with event capturing and cancelling:

const blocker = (e) => {
    console.log({ target: e.target, x: e.clientX, y: e.clientY});
    e.stopImmediatePropagation();
    e.preventDefault();
};

const addBlocker = () => { document.documentElement.addEventListener('click', blocker, true); }
const removeBlocker = () => { document.documentElement.removeEventListener('click', blocker, true); }

Which is a bit similar in construct to Jonathan's answer below. But there's some scenarios this will not work, for example, HTML form elements (see comment box on this page) and IFrames (see embed youtube video on this page).

So, here's a little different approach :)

The idea is to put a viewport "mask" that captures clicks to everything in view, but to get the element beneath uses the elementFromPoint API by temporarily hiding the mask and re-enabling it again (so as to not capture itself) :)

const addBlocker = () => {
    const el = document.createElement('div');
    el.id = 'blocker';
    el.style.position = 'fixed';
    el.style.top = 0;
    el.style.bottom = 0;
    el.style.left = 0;
    el.style.right = 0;
    el.style.zIndex = 2147483647;
    document.documentElement.appendChild(el);

    el.addEventListener('click', (e) => {
        el.style.display = 'none';
        console.log({ target: document.elementFromPoint(e.clientX, e.clientY), x: e.clientX, y: e.clientY});
        el.style.display = 'block';
    });
};

const removeBlocker = () => {
    document.documentElement.removeChild(document.getElementById('blocker'));
};

I didn't really put this code in different pages and test though, but it should hopefully work :)

 
 

Great answer.

I have two questions,

  • How did you come up with this idea of putting a viewport "mask"?
  • Approximately how long did it take to find and write the above two solutions?
 

Thanks!

Well.. I believe this is textbook clickjacking :P

I think about 5 minutes of trying out stuff on the dev tools. I didn't actually have to go searching for answer somewhere. I should tell that I was lucky though, to actually detect on this page with the youtube link and input box and that the first method does not work, so I naturally shifted attention trying out the alternate.

5 minutes and textbook clickjacking πŸ‘ .

Those who searched for blocking events would get "event.preventDefault" no matter how much they want to search.

Just a little different search term, specially a common term that they never thought of, would result in a obviously common way.

I will post my solution used in the video later on :D .

I highly suggest others to try out different solutions other than these two already submitted.

Nice! Eager to see other approaches that you may have had :)

 

For adding all the events:

const addBlocker = (event) => {
  event.preventDefault()
  event.stopPropagation()
  console.log({
    clientX: event.clientX,
    clientY: event.clientY,
    element: event.currentTarget
  })
}

const allElements = document.getElementsByTagName("*");
for (let i = 0; i < allElements.length; i++) {
  allElements[i].addEventListener('click', (event) => addBlocker(event))
}

And for removing the added event:

// Below: Passing in true for the third parameter causes the event to be captured on the way down. Stopping propagation means that the event never reaches the listeners that are listening for it.

const removeBlocker = () => {
  window.addEventListener('click', (event) => {
    event.stopPropagation()
  }, true)
}

// Sometime later...
removeBlocker()
 

Thanks for answering. Did you test this on producthunt?

Apparently there are sites (ie: producthunt) where this should not work because not every click event is a click event. Sometimes there are mousedown and other events such as virtual dom based events as well.

 

Nah, just did a rudimentary test in my console.

Sounds like there would need to be bindings for each event, with associated un-bindings for each event as well. Probably doesn't change my solution too much, just needs to be applied to more things.

 

I just tried on devTools using pointer-events.

const addBlock = () => document.querySelector('body').style.pointerEvents = "none";
const removeBlock = () => document.querySelector('body').style.pointerEvents = "auto";

This worked on producthunt too with newly loaded products on scroll.

 

This is a straightforward solution.

However, only this will not print the element under the mouse on click.

 

This works ->

function addBlocker() {
  let html = document.querySelector("html")
  html.style.pointerEvents = "none"

  const handleClick = e => {
    html.style.pointerEvents = "auto"
    console.log({
      target: document.elementFromPoint(e.clientX, e.clientY),
      x: e.clientX,
      y: e.clientY,
    })
    html.style.pointerEvents = "none"
  }

  html.addEventListener("click", handleClick)

  return () => {
    html.style.pointerEvents = "auto"
    html.removeEventListener("click", handleClick)
  }
}

// also removes the click event listener
var removeBlocker = addBlocker();

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Md. Abu Taher πŸ‘¨β€πŸ’» profile image
Full Stack Developer, focused on web automation, open source enthusiast and contributor. Passionate about programming, specializing in JavaScript.

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