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Place the ball in the field center

importance: 5

Here’s how the source document looks:

What are coordinates of the field center?

Calculate them and use to place the ball into the center of the field:

  • The element should be moved by JavaScript, not CSS.
  • The code should work with any ball size (10, 20, 30 pixels) and any field size, not be bound to the given values.

P.S. Sure, centering could be done with CSS, but here we want exactly JavaScript. Further we’ll meet other topics and more complex situations when JavaScript must be used. Here we do a “warm-up”.

Open a sandbox for the task.

The ball has position:absolute. It means that its left/top coordinates are measured from the nearest positioned element, that is #field (because it has position:relative).

The coordinates start from the inner left-upper corner of the field:

The inner field width/height is clientWidth/clientHeight. So the field center has coordinates (clientWidth/2, clientHeight/2).

…But if we set ball.style.left/top to such values, then not the ball as a whole, but the left-upper edge of the ball would be in the center:

ball.style.left = Math.round(field.clientWidth / 2) + 'px';
ball.style.top = Math.round(field.clientHeight / 2) + 'px';

Here’s how it looks:

To align the ball center with the center of the field, we should move the ball to the half of its width to the left and to the half of its height to the top:

ball.style.left = Math.round(field.clientWidth / 2 - ball.offsetWidth / 2) + 'px';
ball.style.top = Math.round(field.clientHeight / 2 - ball.offsetHeight / 2) + 'px';

Attention: the pitfall!

The code won’t work reliably while <img> has no width/height:

<img src="ball.png" id="ball">

When the browser does not know the width/height of an image (from tag attributes or CSS), then it assumes them to equal 0 until the image finishes loading.

In real life after the first load browser usually caches the image, and on next loads it will have the size immediately.

But on the first load the value of ball.offsetWidth is 0. That leads to wrong coordinates.

We should fix that by adding width/height to <img>:

<img src="ball.png" width="40" height="40" id="ball">

…Or provide the size in CSS:

#ball {
  width: 40px;
  height: 40px;
}

Open the solution in a sandbox.