The Perfect Storm: Why Server-Side Javascript is Heating Up Right Now (in response to @joewalker)

1 Dec

@joewalker asked:

Server side Javascript isn’t new by any stretch, so I wonder why it’s
only getting traction now. ES5? Performance? Language understanding?

The timing is right for Javascript outside the browser – it’s a perfect storm:

* Acceptance – Javascript is not so bad after all. DOM makes things
difficult, but the language is actually pretty good.

* Familiarity – It’s the lingua franca of the web, everybody’s second
language (and some lucky people’s first).

* Patterns and Practices – We know much more about how to tame the
beast, do JS as the language wants it to be done. (e.g. the module
pattern, which is now getting to be commonplace, and was pretty well
unknown until a few years ago.)

* Performance – The Javascript engines are zipping along these days.
Browser wars FTW 🙂

* Standardisation – Go, CommonJS, Go!

Those are all general reasons for Javascript outside the browser. In
the context of server-side Javascript, the argument gets even

* Sharing code between browser and server (e.g. templating; validation).

* Making calls “directly” from browser to server and vice-versa
(something Joe might appreciate 😉

* Javascript is particularly suited to the event-driven, asynchronous,
paradigm which is looking to be powerful for server-side performance
(hello NodeJS)


2 Responses to “The Perfect Storm: Why Server-Side Javascript is Heating Up Right Now (in response to @joewalker)”

  1. amorgaut December 1, 2009 at 3:57 pm #

    That was also our conclusion when we choose a language for our Wakanda Project. I sent a detailled post about it on our blog :

  2. Anonymous December 1, 2009 at 5:53 pm #

    amorgaut, very cool to see it starting to be used in production.

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