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Sadly, it has become increasingly common for websites - even ones that simply present some static page content - to be built on the assumption that the user will blindly execute untrusted, proprietary JavaScript in their browser.

For users who do not wish to do this, are there any good free software web browser extensions (or indeed web browsers) that will pull those web pages' text content from a rendering/caching service that provides a static text view (e.g. Google cache) instead of from the website's webserver, if encountering such JavaScript?

I suppose that what I am seeking might be termed a "caching, rendering proxy" or a "caching, JavaScript-rendering proxy".

  • The caching services provide the exact same experience as surfing with JS turned off, hence you just need to disable JS. Besides, the concept of "proprietary JS" is a common FSF-caused misconception, as JS can be considered content you access through a browser, not software you have installed on your PC. – Andrea Lazzarotto May 18 '16 at 23:27
  • @AndreaLazzarotto, "The caching services provide the exact same experience as surfing with JS turned off, hence you just need to disable JS." That is false. Turn off JavaScript in your browser, and compare this "Text-only version" from Google's cache, which is very readable, with the original, which isn't. – sampablokuper May 18 '16 at 23:42
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    @AndreaLazzarotto, "the concept of "proprietary JS" is a common FSF-caused misconception, as JS can be considered content you access through a browser, not software you have installed on your PC." Well, you can consider it to be content or form or a clown named Buttons or whatever else you wish. Nevertheless, if a user has a typical modern Web browser & does not disable JavaScript, then any JavaScript embedded in or linked from a Web page viewed in that browser will be executed on the user's PC, regardless of whether it is obfuscated & regardless of its license terms. – sampablokuper May 18 '16 at 23:48
  • Therefore, according to your bizzare definition, it is OK if you do not run "proprietary JS" but it is OK if somebody else (in this case Google) runs it through their proprietary web crawler on their proprietary servers so you can consume it? That's one of the weirdest form of GNU puritanism ever. Not to mention the fact that JS is minified for performance reason. CSS has been proved to be Turing complete, do you also check the license of the stylesheets of websites you visit? – Andrea Lazzarotto May 19 '16 at 9:31
  • @AndreaLazzarotto, "CSS has been proved to be Turing complete". I was not aware of this. It was not thought to be true the last time I checked, but that was before 2011, which is when the proof was published. I quite often use browsers that ignore sites' stylesheets. I'll probably do that more often now. "one of the weirdest form of GNU puritanism ever." It is obviously not GNU puritanism, for the reasons you have given. But it is pragmatic. Reducing the amount of untrusted JavaScript I execute reduces my PC's performance burden and attack surface. I hope you'd agree that's desirable. – sampablokuper May 19 '16 at 14:22

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