What is JavaScript? – A Short Introduction

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What is JavaScript? ‘“ A Short Introduction

JavaScript is often confused with Java, which is a programming language. In fact, JavaScript is an accomplishment of ECMAScript language. ECMAScript is a language standard usually utilized to facilitate programmatic access to objects that are computational within a host environment. Originally, JavaScript was developed by Netscape’s Brendan Eich under the name Mocha.

Mocha was later renamed to LiveScript when the first release of beta version of Netscape Navigator 2.0 in September 1995 came out. However, LiveScript was renamed to JavaScript on December 1995 when it was set up in Netscape browser version 2.0B3. After that, JavaScript gained prevalent accomplishment as a client-side scripting language for web pages.

Due to the success of JavaScript, Microsoft developed their own a similar dialect of the language. Microsoft named it Jscript to avoid having issues on trademark. In August of 1996, Jscript was included in the release of Internet Explorer 3.0. JavaScript and Jscript were perceived to be so alike that the terms are often used interchangeably. However, Microsoft claimed that Jscript has a lot of difference compared to JavaScript. Microsoft stated that their Jscript is not ECMA-compliant.

Netscape presented JavaScript to Ecma International to consider the language as an industry standard on November 1996. Subsequently, the result is a standardized version, which was named ECMAScript. The standardized version made JavaScript one of the most popular programming languages used on the web. However, the language was belittled by many professional programmers stressing that JavaScript was mainly for web authors and other amateurs.

Despite the denigration from professional programmers, JavaScript returned to the spotlight after the introduction of Ajax. This result caught the attention of more professional programmers and increase in comprehensive frameworks and libraries followed. Moreover, programming practices in JavaScript has greatly improved increasing the practice outside of web browsers. This paved the way for CommonJS project, which is aimed to identify common standard library for JavaScript development outside the browser.

Today, JavaScript is the most popular scripting language used by web browsers. JavaScript works in all major browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera and Safari. Primarily, Javascript is a scripting language developed to add interactivity to HTML pages. When you say scripting language, it means that it is a lightweight programming language.

JavaScript is free to be used by anyone and it does not require a purchase of license. So what can JavaScript really do?
It is a programming tool for HTML designers. Normally, HTML authors are not programmers but they can be one now because of the simple syntax being used by JavaScript. Anyone who has knowledge of JavaScript syntax may put small snippets of code in their HTML pages.
Javascript also enables HTML authors to put dynamic text into an HTML page.
Javascript has made HTML pages interactive where a script can be set to react on something that happens.
Nowadays, web pages use forms in validating data. JavaScript enables to save the server extra time processing since it enables validation of data before it submitted to the server.
Javascript enables a web page to be intelligent that it can detect a user’s browser. Depending on what browser is detected, it can launch a different page specifically designed for that browser.

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