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What is ECMAScript ?

Basile Bong
Software Developer @userlike. TypeScript, UX Design, Machine Learning, biking and music. 💬 French, German, English and a little Dutch 🏔️ He/Him
Originally published at basilebong.com Updated on ・2 min read

You can read it everywhere, es2020, es6, ... but what is this exactly? To fully understand what is behind the "ES" script names it is necessary to first know ECMA-262.

ECMA-262

ECMA-262 is the specification (or technical standard) of ECMAScript. This specification is a technical documentation which specifies what kind of requirements ECMAScript needs to satisfy.

It is standardized by Ecma International which is a Swiss non-profit organization based in Geneva. They are responsible for a lot of standards, including JSON, C#,... (ECMA-262 by Ecma international)

ECMAScript

ECMAScript is the standard, specified by ECMA-262. The purpose is to make websites, build with programming languages based on it, function in the same way in all browsers. (ECMAScript, Wikipedia)

JavaScript and ECMAScript

JavaScript is based on ECMAScript, and it's standards. To make the relation clearer, JavaScript is often called "the dialect of ECMAScript". (ECMAScript, Wikipedia)

Nearly all specificities of ECMAScript are available in JavaScript. Recently, a new version of ECMAScript has been released every year, with amazing new features which make coding with JavaScript easier. Unfortunately web browsers are not yet compatible with the latest ECMAScript standards. That's why a compiler, like babeljs, is needed when writing with the latest standard.


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