The Joel on Software Discussion Group (CLOSED)

A place to discuss Joel on Software. Now closed.

This community works best when people use their real names. Please register for a free account.

Other Groups:
Joel on Software
Business of Software
Design of Software (CLOSED)
.NET Questions (CLOSED)
TechInterview.org
CityDesk
FogBugz
Fog Creek Copilot


The Old Forum


Your hosts:
Albert D. Kallal
Li-Fan Chen
Stephen Jones

Javascript Development?

Hello, all -

I've heard more than a few people on the web refer to Javascript as a pleasant, powerful language to develop in. Having only done token Javascript in my time, I'm not really in a position to agree / disagree strongly on that assessment. However, it does raise one question in my mind which I want to pose to people who know a heck of alot more than I do: what good is Javascript outside of web development? Do the tools exist to let me toy with Javascript outside of a web browser? Does anyone have any pointers? Even keywords for Google are appreciated, since a cursory search didn't show anything. On a broader note, what do you all think of Javascript as a language in and of itself?

Thanks!
BrotherBeal Send private email
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
Try with jaxer (javascript server), spidermonkey and rhino.
Masiosare Send private email
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
This should get you started on server side java script

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Server-side_JavaScript

You can use JScript for windows scripts, although vbscript seems to be the defacto standard for that.

In general I think javascript suffers a lot from guilt by association with web browsers. It suffered for years from buggy and conflicting implementations. In and of itself I think it is a good enough language. The prototype method of objects can be powerful and a lot of abstractions are pretty easily implemented in javascript compared to other languages.

There is a little blurb at the end of this essay talking about language 'power' http://www.paulgraham.com/icad.html

Actionscript is a form of Javascript.

there are a couple of things on this site as well that talk about javascript with short examples that show the power of the language.
http://www.joelonsoftware.com/items/2006/08/01.html
http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/ThePerilsofJavaSchools.html
http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/TestYourself.html
Bart Park
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
My impression, based on limited study, is that Javascript has power comparable to Perl or Python.
.
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
>In general I think javascript suffers a lot from guilt by association with web browsers.

And from being used by Web site developers, who typically aren't programmers.

I've recently purchased and highly recommend "Javascript The Definitive Guide" by Flanagan, published by O'Reilly. If you want to learn Javascript this is a very good place to start.

I'm planning on doing more JS coding inside Windows Desktop applications. This potentially lets me produce code that runs both in a Desktop app and a Web app.
Neville Franks Send private email
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
JavaScript is a bit strange; almost too powerful to be a scripting language.  The prototype inheritance is hard to understand.  It's got tremendous flexibility, which has served it very well inside the browser, but with that flexibility comes complexity.

On the flip side, it's too unrestrictive to be a good general purpose language.  You can redefine all the methods, there's limited encapsulation, etc.  Again, this is good inside a browser but no so good in general.
Almost H. Anonymous Send private email
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
>>> My impression, based on limited study, is that Javascript has power comparable to Perl or Python.

Did you write Python? You can't be serious. Games are being written in Python and not your CSS/XHTML text-based RPGs!
Victor Noagbodji
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
You need to distinguish between JavaScript The Language and JavaScript the browser scripting tool. As has been written above, JavaScript is often limited by the functionality of the browser, and hampered by browser incompatibilities. But the language itself is great - it's like Scheme (LISP) with curly braces. To see why I love it check out: http://w3future.com/html/beyondJS/

And BTW JavaScript in now officially called ECMAScript and is being significantly extended by the ECMAScript standards committee.
Dan Shappir Send private email
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
Is Javascript or ECMAScript fast enough for complex calculation? If I remember correctly, large numbers are strings in Javascript.
Victor Noagbodji
Monday, March 17, 2008
 
 
you can use jscript as general purpose scripting language with WSH on windoze, however jscript is not a perfect fit with COM.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008
 
 
Victor,
You probably will not want to use JavaScript / ECMAScript for heavy duty computations, much as you will not want to use C++ for text processing. While both languages are Turing complete, they have their intended target use.
Dan Shappir Send private email
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
 
 
Some would say that the word Java also tainted it ;)


I think that 'power' meant 'dynamic typing' or 'a bit like lisp', not 'speed', or 'useful libraries'. It's a relative thing really...
PeterR
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
 
 
Javascript has certain limitations because it was designed for a web browser. To get a regular expression to read a file and print out in Javascript you need to use Active X objects, which obviously limits you to windows. The reason presumably was that people didn't want a browser script reading and writing to the hard disk.
Stephen Jones Send private email
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
 
 

This topic is archived. No further replies will be accepted.

Other recent topics Other recent topics
 
Powered by FogBugz