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Discussion on: What is the next big thing in frontend development?

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tux0r profile image
tux0r

Generally, it enables developers to write more front-end code in languages which are worth a second look. The current limitation to JavaScript is a sick joke. WebAssembly lacks native DOM support yet (at least without external libraries), but I seriously look forward to the day which lets me process button clicks in my browser with C code. It will be much easier to read and write and it will be incredibly fast.

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stereobooster profile image
stereobooster Author

There are gazillion languages which compile down to JS. Like Elm, Kotlin, PureScript. I do not see any innovation with WebAssembly here. There are for sure use cases for WebAssembly, like performant code for games (WebGL) maybe something else...

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tux0r profile image
tux0r

There is a difference between "writing code that will be JS" and "writing code that will be bytecode".

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

Well... Chrome's V8 JIT compiles JavaScript to machine code.

So you can write code that will be auto translated to JS that will be auto translated to machine code :D

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tux0r profile image
tux0r

But you can't write it in C!

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

Why do you need C to develop a frontend?

Have you seen the proof of concept Quake js ?

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tux0r profile image
tux0r

Of course I have.

Well, if I "have" to write client-side code, I want to have a strongly typed, blazing fast language for that.

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stereobooster profile image
stereobooster Author

ReasonML it is. But it is a bit raw (not ready for production) for my taste

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

But there already are strongly typed languages you can use to write frontend code and V8 (and other VMs are more or less on par) is fast.

You just need to give them a try instead of waiting for the "perfect" solution ;-)

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tux0r profile image
tux0r

I am evaluating Elm (which is not strongly typed AFAICS) as a JavaScript compiler, to be honest...

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stereobooster profile image
stereobooster Author

Strongly typed is ambigious term. Elm is statically typed and from ML family, so it most likely sound system (haven't seen formal proof).

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tux0r profile image
tux0r

Elm solves other problems than C, but - as of today - it is one of the least painful options to write client-side code.

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caseycole589 profile image
Casey Cole

I love javascript, but there have been so many times I wanted to have c to write some custom performant code hacks. I could care less about the types. Having pointers however and not dealing with all these deep cloning hacks and different things would be amazing. Plus would be able to roll my own data structures that are way better that whats built in.

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moreurgentjest profile image
more-urgent-jest

what about elixir and phoenix? they claim some impressive performance.

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

@moreurgentjest well, you can't use them on the frontend. The browsers only understand JavaScript. You might be able to compile some Elixir to WebAssembly but I'm not sure...

BTW Phoenix is a server side framework...