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What is an Alert?

Alerts are notifications that pop up on your screen whenever something important happens.  This could be an error, a warning, or just information you need to know about what is going on on the computer.  Alerts can also trigger events when they happen – for example, if someone logs into your account then you might get notified by an alert from the system telling you it happened.

Alerts are usually accompanied by a sound and a graphical event indicating their importance so that they cannot easily be missed. This makes them particularly helpful when dealing with errors that may have caused data loss or crashes of programs because alerts will often provide more detailed information about what went wrong and how to fix it than would otherwise be available without additional searching around in log files or error messages.

Alerts are generally found in PC desktops, mobile devices running operating systems such as iOS or Android, and web applications created with HTML5 and JavaScript. The concept of alerts originates from the Javascript programming language where they are sometimes called prompts.

<script type="text/javascript">
 window.alert("Error! Please try again later!");

When an alert pops up on a user’s screen it will look different depending on what kind of device they are using to access the system – but it should always have at least some of the same basic elements regardless of platform.

Generally, there will be one text line that acts as a title for whatever message is being displayed, this will usually include wording to indicate that an alert has happened (such as Error).  

Right below the title line should be some additional explanation about what happened or how to solve the problem.  

Alerts in HTML5 are able to become more interactive than their Javascript counterparts, allowing text input fields that allow you to explain your problem more clearly or any other steps you might want to tell someone they need to take.

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