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Encryption Programming Security IT

OpenPGP Implemented In JavaScript 167

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the what-won't-someone-do-next dept.
angry tapir writes with this excerpt from Tech World: "Researchers from German security firm Recurity Labs have released a JavaScript implementation of the OpenPGP specification that allows users to encrypt and decrypt webmail messages. Called GPG4Browsers, the tool functions as an extension for Google Chrome and now is capable of working with GMail." A quick gander at the source leaves me with the impression that it should be more or less portable to other browsers. It's also built using a lot of off-the-shelf Javascript libraries. (Who knew Javascript had a bignum library and a number of cipher implementations?)
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OpenPGP Implemented In JavaScript

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  • Who knew? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Pieroxy (222434) on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @06:36AM (#38133800) Homepage

    who knew Javascript had a bignum library and a number of cipher implementations

    Those that know JavaScript?

    And I don't mean the kids copy/pasting stuff found on the web, but real people working with JavaScript and having knowledge of the language, libraries, etc.

    The biggest problem with JavaScript is that the world is plagued with kiddos that think they know JavaScript when all they know is how to search their needs on Google and copy/paste from there.

  • Re:Who knew? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by LingNoi (1066278) on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @06:42AM (#38133818)

    Ah yes, the stereotypical programmer.. You're either a genius or an idiot. You must be real fun to work with.

  • by Viol8 (599362) on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @07:01AM (#38133888)

    In the last year or so suddenly everyone seems to write everything in javascript whether appropriate or not. So these guys really think the future of development lies in the browser which will what, replace the OS as the top level development platform? Sorry , but thats rubbish. It aint gonna happen. Too many disperate browsers with their own quirks and bugs, poor performance and ultimately limited functionality.

    So other than "to see if it can be done" what exactly is the point of these projects? However much webdevs might like it to happen, javascript won't be replacing Java, C++ or C# anytime soon for serious development.

  • by dingen (958134) on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @07:25AM (#38133994)
    News flash: turing-complete programming languages can be used to created anything. Why is it news when another random project is done in Javascript?
  • Re:Who knew? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Zero__Kelvin (151819) on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @09:06AM (#38134476) Homepage
    The fact remains that a large majority of programmers today would do the world a service by changing careers. The industry is flooded with programmers who cannot program [codinghorror.com].
  • Re:Who knew? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Scaba (183684) <`joe' `at' `joefrancia.com'> on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @01:04PM (#38137414)

    JavaScript is a fad that's on its way out. The same thing happened to Ruby due to Ruby on Rails. The Ruby hype really started taking off around 2006, but by 2010 people realized how shitty Ruby and RoR actually are. That's why we hear almost nothing about either of them these days. The same thing is happening to JavaScript, although it's delayed slightly. It really started taking off around 2008, so it's a couple of years behind Ruby. By 2013, it's likely that JavaScript and its advocates will be widely shunned, too.

    2008? JavaScript gained widespread popularity around mid-1996, so by your reckoning it should have faded away sometime in 2001. Like all languages, JavaScript has its warts and WTF moments, but it is the poor craftsman who blames his tools, especially if those tools are being used by millions of other craftsman around the world to create all manner of novel and useful applications (to admittedly varying levels of quality, but again that's more about the developer's skill level than the language itself). Solving the JavaScript problem is a simple five-step process, though: create the One Perfect Language, convince the major browser manufacturers to include a flawless implementation, get all of the current JS developers to learn to code in it correctly, rewrite all existing codebases in it, and make the entire world upgrade their browsers. Done! Now, what's for lunch...?

  • Re:Who knew? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by olau (314197) on Tuesday November 22, 2011 @03:17PM (#38139676) Homepage

    Douglas Crockford has some weird recommendations that seem to come from him being bitten by evil hacks by a real nutjob once upon a time (maybe himself?). I don't think he represents the majority of Javascript programmers.

    It's a bit like if you were in a C++ team and someone thought it would be fun to overload the + operator to do weird things on ints. Afterwards you're so scared that you go around advocating people use c_mathlibrary_plus(a, b) instead of using + since someone might have hacked the +. IMHO that's not relevant advice for most people.

    Of course, some people think that languages where you can mess with things are evil. But it's not that easy. To take the operator overloading example: If you've ever tried expressing an algorithm involving lots of vector and matrix math in a language that doesn't allow overloading of operators, you'll see what I mean. It's true, of course, that most of the time you should stay far away from that sort of magic, and it's just plain stupid that C++ hints that frivolous operator overloading is okay by doing it in the standard I/O library.

    Same thing with Javascript. The basic stuff will get you through 99.9% of the cases.

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