names [Was: Approach of new Object methods in ES5]

Brendan Eich brendan at
Fri Apr 23 14:37:57 PDT 2010

On Apr 23, 2010, at 2:17 PM, Brendan Eich wrote:

> ... here's a memory from the strict mode discussions in TC39, to  
> answer this question: we talked about trade-offs in making it hard  
> to migrate extant code into strict mode. Removing ASI from strict  
> mode was considered too big a migration tax. That's it.

Here's a bit more memory to up the S/N ratio. The most objectionable  
case affected by ASI, everyone agrees, is:

function longwinded() {
     if (some) {
         if (deep) {
             if (condition) {
                     "a lengthy, verbose, pleonastic, tautological,  
redundant result";

     return "foo";

ASI makes that return\n be return;\n and leaves the result string as a  
useless expression in an unreachable statement.

Consider the above modified to remove the braces around the innermost  
if's consequent: then the string is a useless expression statement but  
it is quite reachable (it precedes the first ...-elided code).

This objectionable case, IIRC, we did talk about trying to fix by  
mandating control flow graph construction to find the dead code, and  
either reporting the error or correcting it by not inserting the ;  
after the return.

But such analysis is a high tax on implementors (well, it was in years  
past; not this year in my view). So we didn't mandate an error or  
(better) an exception to ASI's rules here.


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