JavaScript Guide – Introduction To JavaScript’s History And Features

Posted by TotalDC

JavaScript is the foundation of frontend web development and is the key ingredient in frameworks like React, Angular and VueJS. It can also be used to create backend with platforms like Node.js.

JavaScript is everywhere. First, compared to other languages JavaScript is easier to learn. JavaScript is also a fun and rewarding language, which is important when you are just getting started in web development.

JavaScript was created to “add life to webpages” and just like HTML and CSS, JavaScript is written in text files with .js extension.

Like i said earlier JavaScript can be used to do many useful operations on the frontend like validating forms, alerting users, storing temporary data etc.

History of JavaScript

JavaScript was created in 1995 by Brenden Eich while he was an engineer at Netscape. Originally in was going to be named LiveScript but later was renamed to JavaScript. JavaScript has no concept of input or output. It is designed to run as a scripting language in a host environment and it is up to the host environment to provide mechanisms for communicating with the outside world, most commonly – web browser.

Features of JavaScript

As of today in 2021 JavaScript is the most popular language on earth.

With advances in browser technology and JavaScript having moved into the servers with help of Node.js and other frameworks, JavaScript is capable of so much more than before. Here are few things that you can do with JavaScript:

  • JavaScript was created in the first place for DOM manipulation. Earlier websites were mostly static, after JS was created dynamic Web sites were made.
  • Functions in JS are objects. They may have properties and methods just like another object. They can be passed as arguments in other functions.
  • Can handle date and time.
  • Performs Form Validation although the forms are created using HTML.
  • No compiler needed.

What is JavaScript Used For

  • Web Development: Adding interactivity and behavior to static sites JavaScript was invented to do this in 1995.
  • Web Applications: With technology, browsers have improved to the extent that a language was required to create robust web applications. When we explore a map in Google Maps then we only need to click and drag the mouse. All detailed view is just a click away, and this is possible only because of JavaScript. It uses Application Programming Interfaces(APIs) that provide extra power to the code.
  • Server Applications: With the help of Node.js, JavaScript made its way from client to server and node.js is the most powerful in the server-side.
  • Games: JavaScript also helps in creating games. The combination of JavaScript and HTML 5 makes JavaScript popular in game development as well.
  • Smartwatches: JavaScript is being used in all possible devices and applications. It provides a library PebbleJS which is used in smartwatch applications. This framework works for applications that require the internet for its functioning.
  • Art: Artists and designers can create whatever they want using JavaScript to draw on HTML 5 canvas, make sound more effective also can be used p5.js library.
  • Machine Learning: This JavaScript ml5.js library can be used in web development by using machine learning.

Limitations of JavaScript

  • Performance: JavaScript does not provide the same level of performance as offered by many traditional languages as a complex program written in JavaScript would be comparatively slow. But as JavaScript is used to perform simple tasks in a browser, so performance is not considered a big restriction in its use.
  • Complexity: To master a scripting language, programmers must have a thorough knowledge of all the programming concepts, core language objects, client and server side objects otherwise it would be difficult for them to write advance scripts using JavaScript.
  • Weak error handling and type checking facilities: It is weakly typed language as there is no need to specify the data type of the variable. So wrong type checking is not performed by compiler.

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