arrow syntax unnecessary and the idea that "function" is too long

Peter Michaux petermichaux at
Sun May 8 11:20:05 PDT 2011

On Sat, May 7, 2011 at 4:17 PM, David Herman <dherman at> wrote:

> But we are going to have to make a decision, and it simply won't
> be perfect. We're going to listen to everyone, consider the
> technical issues, and at the end of the day, make the best
> decision we can with imperfect information.

I hope the committee keeps in mind that it can choose not to include
any short function syntax. I know the committee knows that but I hope
it is near the top of the list as one of the options.

On Sat, May 7, 2011 at 4:40 PM, Kyle Simpson <getify at> wrote:

> But, JSConf has just 150-200 JavaScript developers in attendance. While they
> are certainly some of the most passionate (and intelligent) developers of
> the community, no doubt, they are definitely not a representative sampling
> of the overall community. Making language decisions based on the vocal
> support of JSConf alone is not sufficient.

Agreed. I think the personality type of hundreds of developers that
attend conferences is quite different than the tens of thousands of
developers that don't attend.

> I think I could easily come up with a dozen examples of patterns in
> JavaScript coding which are shorter, but which "most of the community" would
> say is *not* more readable. So I take issue with the assertion that
> shorter==better unequivocally.

Agreed. There shouldn't be the feeling that shorter function syntax is
desperately needed and that it has to go into the next ES even if it
is not perfect.

On Sat, May 7, 2011 at 5:18 PM, Juan Ignacio Dopazo
<dopazo.juan at> wrote:

> Brendan once said "JS is a curly-brace language and it always will be". I
> think the -> looks works very nice with a pythonic-like forced indentation
> like Coffeescript has. However, I believe # looks better with curly braces,
> so I'd keep #(x) { x * x }.
> I also think familiarity should be considered and that #(x) { x * x } would
> be more familiar to the casual JS programmer.

I agree with this type of thinking about keeping syntax similar with
arguments in parens and the body in braces more than introducing
something so foreign to JavaScript like the arrow syntax.

On Sat, May 7, 2011 at 7:33 PM, Isaac Schlueter <i at> wrote:

> It has been my experience that professional JavaScripters will cheer
> *any* idea that shortens the spelling of "function" and "return" :)

There are professional JavaScript programmers in *this* thread that
aren't cheering. That is why this thread started.

On Sat, May 7, 2011 at 7:58 PM, Kyle Simpson <getify at> wrote:

> So I felt like it was important to voice "early" that not everyone feels
> universally so lovey-dovey over that syntax. In fact, a recent tweet I read
> sums up my feelings: "If I wanted to be using Coffeescript, I'd be using
> Coffeescript. I prefer JavaScript."

Exactly! There are syntactic features that some developers want that
are so far from JavaScript that they shouldn't or can't be
incorporated into the language. This is why compilers exist and I hope
that the to-JavaScript compiler community grows if people want to do
that sort of thing.

I've talked with some JavaScript developers and asked them "What do
you think of Coffeescript?" without biasing my question. I've had a
100% negative response. They aren't interested in using Coffeescript
_at_all_. So just because Coffeescript has some vocal fans, it has not
caught on like wildfire. In the big scheme of things it has virtually
not caught on at all. It is a very fringe group that is experimenting.


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