JavaScript: the First 20 Years by Allen Wirfs-Brock and Brendan Eich

A link to the 190 page history of JS by its original creator and the editor of ES6.

reflections Posted:

Allen Wirfs-Brock (editor of ES6) and Brendan Eich (you know what he did) have published the definitive 20 year history of JavaScript. It is a 190 page treatment for The History of Programming Languages Conference, which only occur once every 13-15 years (1978, 1993, 2007, 2020). It took them 3 years to write the final manuscript.

Read it: https://zenodo.org/record/3707008

If you have any interest in programming languages at all, you should read it. Modern JavaScript, warts and all, is one of the biggest achievements of humanity, especially in the Information Age and the democratization of computing.

History won't stop here - HOPL-V in ~2035 might be more about visual programming languages and "no code" than it is traditional text editing. Every time programming gets easier, people get more infuriated, and yet the world keeps turning toward enabling more programmers. The Future of Programming is clear, even if we're never quite there yet.

That's it, that's pretty much all I want to blog today. I did write 1700 words on another blogpost, but that's currently in review.


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