simple shorter function syntax

Brendan Eich brendan at
Sat Jul 24 13:10:11 PDT 2010

On Jul 24, 2010, at 12:59 PM, Alex Russell wrote:

> I think the plan was to allow for "return" in # functions. Again, we went around on this point a couple of times and I may be wrong to want auto-return. Frankly, I'd settle for a shorter name for "return" ;-)

Propose one? The completion value hazard is going to be a stumbling block in TC39, I would bet real money (andnot due to me).

> Yeah, that's bad. Would a new dictionary type have a specialization for "in"? Or just a method (ala Python)? If the latter, it all seems moot-ish.

As with tuple in the large and baggy shadow of Array, it is hard to beat Object syntax -- #{...} and related ideas are worth exploring but I suspect we'll end up saying "library" (your "just a method").

>> Yeah, good luck with that! Not everyone is going to agree before implementing.
> Not required. We just need to clear the path so folks can implement quickly. Fast standard iterations and fast browser iterations together create a dynamic that allows the economics of a better-functioning browser market to disseminate new features faster than we have recently.

I agree, and we've been trying to do this with SpiderMonkey (and Rhino, thanks to nboyd, stevey, et al.), but it can backfire, and you then have to carry an extension that did not make it into a standard for a while. The time constant is shrinking now that TC39 is functioning again, but we added getters and setters over a decade ago.

>> Not everyone is going to implement on the same schedule.
> That's cool. My comments were with a view toward better, not perfect.

I'm with you, but note that some browser vendors won't take the chance I pointed to above. They'll wait for a finished ECMA-262 Edition. However pipelined some browsers are, others will not be "superscalar" this way, and developers won't have as coherent, closely-versioned, and cleanly upgrading a supported-browser market.

Just some grains of salt, we should definitely persevere. It's my other middle name. :-)


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