The discussion on the future of ECMAScript has been quite lively lately. Brendan Eich kicked off a flurry of posts about ECMAScript 4 and if that is the right path.
Just browsing through the wiki shows a language which has prototypes, classes, multi-methods?, static types, dynamic types, etc, etc. This reminds an old guy like myself of other large design by committee languages such as PL/I, Algol 68 and ADA. These ambitious efforts all had smart people involved in the design and implementation but were unfortunately far too complex and came to the market too late. JS is intended to be a language for the people, not another language that only technical wizards can understand. If you are an Ajax developer or care about dynamic languages I suggest that it is time for you to speak up and help put ECMAScript 4 on a much less ambitious path than is currently being charted. Less is truly more when it comes to languages.
If this was a new language like Ruby or Groovy, these changes would probably be seen as too little!
Can we just get a VM already?
Is EMCA Script 4 Necessary Right Now?
The smart thing would be to see how these technologies are adopted by developers in the real world first, and use those observations to help form the next version of the language. I am all for a lot of the proposed changes (namespaces and standardized OO syntax in particular), but the current 'extra' technologies already provide what I need right now, without having to wait for browser support.
I figure the ES4 will be 'approved' at some point next year, and no one will care. The browsers will continue their march towards ES3. Developers will be curious about ES4, but mostly for academic reasons.
It is the time!
Tell me; where you CAN define a beautiful DSL like JQuery?
3 - Please forget about EcmaScript 4; And try to make more useful things like FireFox!
Ralph Winzinger Nov 25, 2014