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JavaScript Weekly Issue 52
November 11, 2011
Welcome to issue 52 of JavaScript Weekly. I just realized this marks JavaScript Weekly's first year anniversary. Many thanks for subscribing and for all of your support. The year has passed quickly (to me) and we've seen JavaScript become increasingly more important, long may this and JavaScript Weekly last :-)
Headlines
Node v0.6.0 Released: A New Stable Branch of Node Node 0.6.0 is the third stable branch of Node.js and introduces native Windows support, integrated load balancing over multiple processes, a big V8 upgrade (3.1 to 3.6), and an improved command line debugger, amongst other things.
O'Reilly's Big JavaScript Sale (For 1 Week?) I didn't get asked and I get no benefit from it but O'Reilly appears to be having a one week sale on JavaScript e-books (50%) and books (40%). If you're looking to get some O'Reilly JavaScript books, now is probably the time. I read "JavaScript Web Applications" recently and recommend it.
Adobe Turns Away from Mobile Flash to Focus on HTML5 (Good News for JS!) Adobe is stopping development on Flash Player for browsers on mobile platforms and is now focusing their efforts on native apps (Flash included with Adobe AIR) and HTML5.
Codecademy Adds jQuery Lessons to Its Online Coding School Codecademy is a new, JavaScript-focused interactive online 'coding school' that recently picked up 2.5m in funding. They've now introduced a 2 lesson 'Document Object Model & jQuery' course with 13 exercises.
Articles
A New Goal: Building a Slimmer jQuery The jQuery team is introducing a new priority for new versions of the popular JavaScript library: a smaller distributable filesize. Given that, there are now several deprecated features you might want to be aware of and more on the way.
Build A Simple Client-Side MVC App with RequireJS Jonathan Verrecchia demonstrates how to use RequireJS to build a small app that's split up into multiple files and modules. If you're unfamiliar with modules and splitting up code, this is one place to start.
Getting Started with Spine Mobile (A Tutorial + Source) Spine is a lightweight MVC framework for creating client-side webapps. Spine Mobile is an extension to Spine designed for creating native-feeling mobile webapps. Here, its creator, Alex MacCaw, presents a fine tutorial on how to get going with the framework.
Setting up a Local Node Dev Environment with NPM and Cloud9 IDE
You Don't Know JavaScript Michael Woloszynowicz has noticed many people adding 'JavaScript' to their resumes without really understanding it. He explains what he feels different levels of JS developers should know and why it's important.
Topic of the Week: Node.js
Cluster: Node's API for Multiple Processes Sharing Server Ports Node 0.6 includes a 'cluster' module which allows you to easily create a network of processes all which share server ports. There are a couple of code examples to get you started.
Microsoft and Joyent Deliver 'First Stable Build' of Node.js on Windows A year ago, Joyent announced its corporate backing of the Node.js project, and now it's working with Microsoft to bring Node into the Windows platform as a first class citizen. It'll be interesting to see where Microsoft heads with this.
Here's Why You Should Be Happy That Microsoft is Embracing Node.js Some extra background to Microsoft's recent involvement with Node.js by The Guardian's tech reporter, Matthew Baxter-Reynolds. Amongst other things, he argues that Microsoft's backing for Node.js 'sits at a neat intersection of "cool and trendy street" and "understood and reliable avenue"'.
Videos and Media
Brendan Eich - JavaScript Today and Tomorrow (at SPLASH 2011) MSDN's Channel 9 interviews JavaScript's creator Brendan Eich and discusses the role of JavaScript as 'Web assembly', the role of JavaScript as a beginners' language, and where JavaScript is headed in future. It's 15 minutes long.
Code and Libraries
Moment.js: Date Parsing, Manipulating, and Formatting Moment.js is a lightweight date/time library for parsing, manipulating, and formatting dates. The documentation is excellent and the library supports English, French, Italian, and Portuguese so far.
Visual Event: Track Events Subscribed to DOM Nodes Visual Event is an open source JavaScript bookmarklet that provides debugging information about events that have been attached to DOM elements.
Jescov: JavaScript Test Coverage
web/null: Like /dev/null for the Web (Written in Node.js) web/null is a Web server that silently agrees with and eats up any request being sent to it while keeping statistics. web/null can be used as a diagnostics end-socket of any distributed system you have that uses other systems over HTTP.
Flatiron: An Unobtrusive Framework Initiative for Node.js No one agrees on frameworks. It's difficult to get consensus on how much or how little a framework should do. Flatiron's approach is to package simple to use yet full featured components and let developers subtract or add what they want.
Timeline.js: Compact JS Animation Library with a GUI Timeline Timeline.js is an interesting looking JavaScript animation library that includes a graphic-based timeline for fast editing of the transformations. Make sure to click through to the "Example" at the bottom.
UILayer: A JavaScript API to Work with Layers on WebKit UILayer provides a JavaScript API on top of WebKit for working with the concept of layers. Instead of manipulating DOM elements using a myriad of mixed concepts, you go though a single, well defined API. Nice demos.
Speakeasy: Easy Two-Factor Authentication for Node.js Speakeasy by Mark Bao provides easy two-factor authentication for node.js apps. Calculate time-based or counter-based one-time passwords. It also supports the Google Authenticator mobile app.
CoffeeTable: A CoffeeScript-fluent Browser Console
List Posts
The 12 Best jQuery Image Sliders of 2011 Can everybody say 'list post'? :-) Nonetheless, it's a screenshot driven listing of 12 different image slider jQuery plugins - only 2 of which have been covered on JavaScript Weekly so far, by my count.
27 Cool jQuery Tooltip Plugins for Interactive Designs Continuing the list post theme, this is a pretty good roundup of jQuery tooltip plugins. The post is older than it claims but has been updated this week.
Last but not least..
Unveiling.. the CoffeeScript T-Shirt from PeepCode Tees Want a CoffeeScript themed t-shirt? Geoffrey Grosenbach over at Peepcode can help you out - he's started selling tees. Fully authorized by CoffeeScript creator Jeremy Ashkenas, too.
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