Feeds

Mozilla Labs pops out JavaScript language tool for coders

Two heads are better than one. Just ask Beeblebrox

High performance access to file storage

Mozilla has released a JavaScript engine strictly for testing purposes to allow web developers to gain deeper access to – and better understanding of – the code underpinning its browser.

The Narcissus engine and Zaphod script look-up tool have been added to Mozilla Labs to help the open source outfit develop new ideas for the JavaScript language.

“What features should we add to JavaScript? What should the syntax/semantics be? What practical issues will come up that we have not considered so far? With Narcissus and Zaphod, we can more easily answer these questions,” said Mozilla’s Tom Austin.

“In programming language (PL) research, we like to write up fancy evaluation rules containing lots of Greek letters. Unfortunately, these rules tend to be inscrutable to anyone who isn’t a PL researcher. Even for PL researchers, there is something unsatisfying about seeing a bunch of rules on a piece of paper.”

By releasing the Narcissus Javascript engine, which is based on simpler code and is much less affected by the changing browser code base, Mozilla hopes to get more people testing the software.

Meanwhile, Zaphod doggedly searches for scripts with a tag of “application/narcissus” and parses them with Narcissus. Mozilla’s factory line JavaScript engine SpiderMonkey ignores the tag.

“But we might also want to see how the implementation would work on a pre-existing page. Click on the mozilla icon in the bottom right corner and Narcissus will be set as the default JavaScript interpreter. After experimenting, click on the icon again and SpiderMonkey will be reset as your JS implementation,” said Austin.

“Zaphod/Narcissus cannot yet handle some of the more JavaScript-heavy pages, but it can handle enough to be a valuable research tool for JavaScript language hackers.”

This way for more about the JavaScript experiment. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
Windows 8.1, which you probably haven't upgraded to yet, ALREADY OBSOLETE
Pre-Update versions of new Windows version will no longer support patches
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Windows XP still has 27 per cent market share on its deathbed
Windows 7 making some gains on XP Death Day
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
US taxman blows Win XP deadline, must now spend millions on custom support
Gov't IT likened to 'a Model T with a lot of things on top of it'
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.