[TLUG]: ECMAScript ("Javascript") Version 4 - FALSE ALARM

Jeff Dyer jodyer at adobe.com
Mon Oct 29 18:01:17 PDT 2007

On 10/29/07 4:51 PM, Brendan Eich wrote:

> On Oct 29, 2007, at 3:06 PM, Neil Mix wrote:
>>> What would Adobe and Mozilla possibly have to make a "deal"  
>>> concerning?
>>> Its probably the case that the head decision makers of Mozilla and the
>>> head decision makers at Adobe have never met each other, much less  
>>> made
>>> a "deal".
>> I'll play devil's advocate for a moment, and say "Tamarin".  It goes  
>> like this: someone claims Adobe and Mozilla are in cahoots, and that  
>> triggers the memory that Adobe open-sourced its AS engine to Mozilla,  
>> and then the wheels start turning.  It's a lazy thought process, of  
>> course, because what's really gained?  Did they team up to make sure  
>> the spec results in as little modification to Tamarin as possible?   
>> So they're teaming up out of laziness?  I don't get it either, but  
>> you asked.
> As the press release
> <http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/press/mozilla-2006-11-07.html>  noted, Tamarin
> was open-sourced to share effort and accelerate development (and inform
> specification!) of a sound, implementable, high-performance ES4. I think I can
> say that without speaking too much for Adobe.
Yes, you can. And its still true.
> Also, and this is edgier: it's not as if Macromedia (remember, it was
> Macromedia who developed the VM originally) wanted to bear the cost of a
> high-performance VM all by itself. To add relevant information at the risk of
> dishing a rumor (sue me), I heard that Macromedia originally tried to license
> an existing small VM, and started on what became Tamarin only after being
> denied that license.
True or not, I¹m sure glad Adobe was denied that option. Open standards and
open vms will work out better for Adobe customers and web users in general.
> I'll also testify, as an outsider with no interest in Adobe, that the Adobe
> (originally Macromedia) employees on TG1 have always worked from shared
> principles and evidence to reach better design decisions, without regard for a
> corporate agenda. In particular, they've been willing to develop changes --
> even if those changes inflicted incompatibilities on ActionScript users. I've
> heard this came at some political cost inside Adobe; it's not hard to imagine
> marketeers and evangelists there who might prefer a rubber-stamp.
Thanks Brendan.
> But ES4 is not AS3, and it differs enough
> (see http://wiki.ecmascript.org/doku.php?id=clarification:adobe_as3) that the
> claim that Adobe is forcing something it owns, without thoughtful changes,
> through a rubber-stamp process, is demonstrably false. (Rubber-stamped
> standards exist; you may have heard of OOXML?)
> Of course Adobe desires to standardize, even at the cost of incompatibility.
> Reduced developer brainprint from variant dialects of JS is in their interest,
> and in their developers' interest. How nefarious.
³A rising tide lifts all boats². A better web will become a bigger web. This
is good for Adobe, and just about everyone else on this list.

Any questions?

> /be
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