Prototypal inheritance with closures and late binding: so powerful and versatile that it can support just about any programming paradigm imaginable. Functional folks can memoize their partially applied functions, object-oriented people can inherit from their base class, and the imperatively-minded can use their interactive read, evaluate, print loop. Those few left, still unsatisfied, might use a more refined, stack-based language and transpile the nonsensical glyphs back into prototypal codes and (perhaps with a shim or two) run their fancy new adders on interpreters older than time itself.
Back in the day
And then-- a new power was wrought: babel.
Personal computing had improved, and it kept improving. To the point that an average, technically privileged individual walked around with more flops than a 1.93-meter tall, pale white man pretending he's still in San Diego. Mobile networks, too, improved, with ever increasing numbers of G (whatever that is) and never-high-enough bandwidth caps for those sweet, dank memes.
The internet rejoiced, and humanity soon entered a glorious Fool's Golden Age of Software Engineering. But many could not shake that unease, that tension, the sort that you feel when trying to not stub your toe in a pitch dark room full of kids toys.
"My phone seems like its getting slower," some users wrote on message boards.
"It must be your mobile network," the response, "our app is flawlessly crafted with coffeescript and scss and converted into state of the art, cross-platform, bullet-proof, ironclad. Java. Script."
Paralysed by choice of flavor for the week, many developers abandoned all sense. Long term support version lifespans were cut in half, then half again, then by a magnitude, to allow people to "move fast" and "break things." Soon, things did indeed seem to be nearing a breaking point. Software sucked.
Huge efforts were made to improve the situation, with much time and energy spent, culminating in a wacky new invention: transpilation. No, don't compile the code for machines to consume-- translate it into a different language altogether! For machines to consume! Err.. wait, is that right? Uhh.. best not to think on it.
Everything anyone could think of doing to improve matters was done.
But software still sucked.
And it still does
In 2019, it's called ES2018. And you don't even need babel anymore.
All this, and no big deal to the language that would be haphazardly created and unintentionally willed upon all developers, front or backend, whether they enjoyed it or not.
Practical application of a few, simple ideas is sometimes all that's necessary to leave a long lasting legacy and change the world forever. For better... Or worse. ;)
- August 2021
- Self-Hosting for Fun and Personal Freedom
- July 2019
- Closing Channels Twice in Go
- May 2019
- March 2018
- Refactoring, Now With Generics!
- November 2017
- Packages 3.2 released!
- September 2017
- Introducing the MOTKI CLI
- July 2017
- Decoupling Yourself From Dependencies
- May 2017
- Model Rocketry Update
- April 2017
- Dynamic DNS with homedns
- March 2017
- The Story I Heard