Namespaces in ECMA

Lars T Hansen lth at
Sun Jul 15 19:17:52 PDT 2007

On 7/15/07, Jason Orendorff <jason.orendorff at> wrote:
> On 7/15/07, Alexandre Bergel <Alexandre.Bergel at> wrote:
> > The notion of namespace of ECMA 4 is very interesting. I spent some
> > time in reading the new javascript description [1]. I try to
> > understand whether a "stack of namespace" is present or not at
> > runtime. [...]
> Thanks for the question.  You're right, that wiki page doesn't seem
> to say.
> The scope of "use namespace" is determined statically.  So is the "set
> of open namespaces" that the spec talks about.  When the spec says
> "context", it means the lexical context. The runtime stack is not a factor.
> When an expression like "this.update()" is evaluated, the runtime
> searches the open namespaces, in order, until an "update" property is
> found.  The sequence of namespaces to search is determined
> statically.  The search happens at runtime, because you can't tell
> statically which properties the runtime value of "this" will have.
> > Is there a chance to get a fixed interpreter ?
> Yes, in time.  Both the spec and the reference implementation are
> works in progress.
> For the impatient, this example can be munged into a form the
> current interpreter can handle:
>   >> namespace N1;
>   >> namespace N2;
>   >> N1 var x: int = 10;
>   >> N2 var x : String = "hello";
>   >> {use namespace N1; print(x);}
>   10
> Likewise:
>   >> namespace V2;
>   >> class Component {function paint() {print("Component paint")}
> function update() {this.paint()} V2 function paint() {print("Component
> paint V2")}}
>   >> {use namespace V2; var c = new Component; c.update();}
>   Component paint

This is to my knowledge not a bug in the interpreter.  "use namespace"
can only be used at the top of a block, not at the top level.  This
fact is probably well hidden on the wiki pages :-/


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