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JavaScript Evolution History

When you look around the web development of modern day, one language that seems to be rocking is JavaScript. JavaScript has gained a lot of significance over the years, despite facing various stumbling blocks it has gone on to become the most popular language in the world today. For this reason, I am interested in the JavaScript evolution history. The crests, troughs and its strength. Let’s have a look.

JavaScript Evolution History

Pre-JavaScript Era

Before the mid1990s, the web was not much into a limelight. HTML was the major mean of web development. However in 1995, the National Center of Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) made advancements when they released the world’s first popular NCSA Mosaic Web Browser.

To challenge this, Marc Andreessen brought into another web browser called Mosaic Netscape and renamed it into Netscape Navigator.

Inspiration

For Marc Andreessen the web wasn’t complete yet. According to him, the web needed a “glue language”. For this, Netscape joined hands with Sun’s Microsystems the developer of programming language called Java. The “glue language” was not related to Java, except a bit of similarity in syntax. In a quest for prototype Brendan Eich who was employed in May 1995 created a language was called Mocha which later in September 1995 was evolved to LiveScript. The final name in December 1995 at the 3rd beta release was changed to JavaScript.

It should be known that Sun’s and Netscape had already gone into an agreement earlier to avoid any copyright issues. The name JavaScript however did accelerate the language feed on the popularity of the Java programming language too.

Netscape put JavaScript to the European Computer Manufacturers Association (ECMA) for standardization in 1995.

The JavaScript evolution history brought Microsoft too in 1996 who developed a JavaScript implementation in the form of ASP and Dot NET on the Internet Information Services (IIS) web server and termed it Jscript which was a reverse engineered implementation of Netscape’s JavaScript.

Later after two years after passing JavaScript to ECMA, the first standard version of JavaScript, the ECMAScript 1 was released in June 1997.

For programmers it was difficult developing websites for both the Netscape Navigator and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. So the quest started for developing cross platform websites.

Later that year, the adoption of JavaScript further increased after Jesse James Garrett’s paper was released where he described the technologies JavaScript supported as the core for the web, introducing the term Ajax as a way of building modern web apps.

Later it evolved to today’s JavaScript with client-side being powered by it. JavaScript evolution history is not completed without referring its frameworks. The most popular framework of it is being jQuery to help developers build sophisticated web pages. Now Node JS is regarded as one of the most powerful server-side development technologies in the world with push the prominence of Single Page Applications, Angular JS, Knockout, Meteor, React giving JavaScript more popularity.

Conclusion

JavaScript evolution history points that the language has really come a long way from a mere prototype written in just 10 days to the most used scripting language in the world and it’s continuing to blossom and getting better.

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