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jQuery Javascript order of operations problem

dale_abrams asked
Last Modified: 2014-05-20
I'm having trouble with jQuery and Javascript processing elements before they should be. Specifically, I have an HTML form that when the user hits the submit button, I need to intercept the submission and send the data via AJAX to a script that returns a JSON signature. Once I have that signature, then I need to populate one of the HTML form fields with the data and then submit the form via a normal HTML POST. What is happening is that the form is getting submitted with the signature field blank. So, its not waiting for the return statement to send the POST. Here is a scaled down example:

       <script type="text/javascript" src="jquery.js" />
       <script type="text/javascript">
              $j = jQuery;

              function processTransaction(){
	   	     type: "POST",
		     url: "get_signature.php",
		     data: { 
					'test': $j("#test").val(),
					'signature': $j("#signature").val()
		     success: function( data ){
				var json = jQuery.parseJSON( data );
				if( json.error != undefined ) {
					$j("#result_message_error").append('<p>There was an error in the AJAX JSON response.</p>');
					return false;
				} else { 
					return true;
        <form name="form1" id="form1" action="www.someURL.com" method="POST" onSubmit="return processTransaction()">
            <input type="hidden" name="signature" value="" />
            <input type="text" name="test" value="" />
            <input type="submit" value="submit" />

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