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JavaScript Weekly Issue 7
December 31, 2010
Welcome to issue 7 of JavaScript Weekly - I hope you had a Merry Christmas and didn't miss JavaScript Weekly too much on Christmas Eve ;-) There's plenty in today's issue to make up for it!
This week's top news
CoffeeScript 1.0 Released CoffeeScript, a popular language that compiles into JavaScript, has hit its big 1.0 release. It seems to be taking part in the new trend of not having any serious release notes but if you're already using CoffeeScript, you know you want it.
jQuery Community Updates for December 2010 The jQuery team presents its December 2010 'jQuery Community Update' in which they discuss the road ahead to jQuery 1.5, donations to the project, jQuery UI and more.
Node.JS 0.2.6 Released Node 0.2.6 has been released. It's a minor maintenance release of the stable 0.2 branch and includes bug fixes and minor tweaks, so keep the champagne on ice for now.
Hotlinking to To Be Disabled January 31, 2011 The jQuery team have noticed many developers are hotlinking to JavaScript files directly on rather than self hosting or using Google's mirrors. To curb this issue, the jQuery team will be disabling hotlinking to scripts on all jQuery sites except on January 31, 2011.
This week's top articles
An Open Letter to JavaScript Leaders Regarding Semicolons Despite the grandiose title, this is an insightful article by Isaac Schlueter about the issue of semicolons in JavaScript, whether they're needed, and how, technically, JavaScript statements are separated from one another. A must read.
2011 is year of the Server-Side JavaScript Assaf Arkin waxes lyrical about JavaScript, his experiences with it in 2010, and where he thinks JavaScript will go in 2011. More depressingly, he notes that JavaScript is now a trademark of Oracle ;-)
Building Large-Scale jQuery Applications Addy Osmani presents a bumper sized post packed with links and resources relating to building large-scale applications with jQuery. Topics covered include dependency management, MVC, templating, minification, and testing.
Bulletproof JavaScript benchmarks Mathias Bynens and John-David Dalton look at some different patterns with which you can benchmark snippets of JavaScript code and examine the pros and cons of each.
Coding Better Object-Oriented JavaScript with Closure Compiler Googler Hedger Wang digs deep into how Google's Closure Compiler for JavaScript (which both compresses and optimizes JavaScript code) can help you produce 'better' JavaScript code. Lots of interesting code examples in here.
The 'catch' with try...catch Ben Alman has noticed some 'interesting quirks' with try...catch in Internet Explorer while debugging some JavaScript code and decided to dig into them.
How I Did the 1KB Christmas Tree A lighthearted piece by Roman Cortes walking through how he used JavaScript, some math, and a few simple images to produce a rather good looking Christmas tree animation.
Testing REST services with JavaScript Alexander Beletsky, a self proclaimed 'fan of TDD', leads us through the production of some integration tests from a REST service using only JavaScript, jQuery, and qUnit.
Interesting new libraries and code
Zombie.js: insanely fast, full-stack, headless testing Zombie.js simulates a headless browser, loading a page into memory and executing JavaScript in an environment that approximates a browser. This is great to test apps heavy on client-side JavaScript without running an actual browser. It uses V8 for speed.
Three.js: A JavaScript 3D Engine three.js is a JavaScript 3D engine that aims to have a low level of abstraction. It can use canvas, SVG, and WebGL to do rendering. The demos are pretty compelling and even the most complex canvas-based ones were pretty snappy in my Safari 5 and the WebGL ones blew me away in Chrome.
jQuewy: A Simple, Efficient, Lightweight JavaScript Loader jQuewy is the latest in a long line of 'loaders' to hit the JavaScript scene but it has an interesting twist. jQuewy is aware of about 30 popular JavaScript libraries and lets you load them by referring to simple names like 'jquery', 'backbone', etc. Could be handy for prototyping or quick projects.
Crafty: A JavaScript Game Engine Crafty is a lightweight, modular JavaScript game engine for producing high quality games. It includes components for things like animation, event management, redraw regions, collision detection, and sprites.
node-postgres: A pure JavaScript PostgreSQL client for Node node-postgres is a non-blocking, asynchronous, pure JavaScript PostgreSQL client for node.js.
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