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Google Programming

Dart 1.0 Released 121

Posted by timothy
from the what's-the-point? dept.
stoolpigeon writes "Yesterday marked the release of Dart SDK 1.0, a cross-browser, open source toolkit for structured web applications. The Dart SDK 1.0 includes everything you need to write structured web applications: a simple yet powerful programming language, robust tools, and comprehensive core libraries. The language has been somewhat controversial, but Google continues to move it forward." Reader slack_justyb adds some more detail: "The new release brings a much tighter dart2js compiler reducing overall JavaScript output up to 40%; Dartium — a version of Google Chrome that has the DartVM in addition to the JavaScript VM as native to the browser; PUB, a package manager for Dart add-ons; and several favorite 3rd party plug-ins that now come out-of-box, in addition to a lot of work for Dart server-side tools that can work to automate server side tasks and help in the construction of web pages. However Dart has many critics not only from the IE and Apple camps, as one would guess, but from the Firefox and Opera camps as well. In addition to the low adoption of Dart from third parties there are some asking where does Dart go from here? Especially considering that Google is one of the strongest pushers for EcmaScript 6."
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Dart 1.0 Released

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 14, 2013 @11:18AM (#45422665)

    If you've used JS in the past you'll see immediately why DART is so welcome. It's actually SANE!

    My productivity is probably 200% greater in DART then JS. But don't take my word for it, I'm jsut an ana coward!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It seems rather imbicilic to say that Dart2JS is faster than JS.

    • It's rather imbecillic to handwave it without providing any reasoning behind it. Look what Mozilla is doing with asm.js and "compile to javascript" compilers.. You can compile a high level language to a low level, restricted subset of javascript which then runs very fast in the browsers's JIT engines. Doesn't sound too great maybe but the resulting execution speed can possibly be better than by using javascript's high level features and libraries instead.

    • by AC-x (735297)

      Next you'll be telling us that an optimising C compiler can't create faster code than readable hand-written ASM...

  • by i kan reed (749298) on Thursday November 14, 2013 @11:28AM (#45422737) Homepage Journal

    If I hadn't come to absolutely loathe and distrust everything Google does over the course of the last few years.

    • by LWATCDR (28044)

      Good for you. Oh Slashdot uses google services so you might as well just not post here.

      • No, you can't avoid every webpage google has stuck its fingers in these days. All you can do is adblock every doubleclick, adwords, google+, and google analytics XSR on the Internet, and avoid using their services directly.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 14, 2013 @11:48AM (#45422913)

      This is totally Microsoft's VBscript for the web, and NaCL is their ActiveX. They're taking their role as the new Microsoft too seriously...

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Manfre (631065)

        Chrome is the new IE6. A site I maintain has dropped IE6, but has recently been required to make CSS tweaks to fix box and other layout issues with Chrome.

        • by spacepimp (664856)

          So Chrome is going to languish for 6 years without a hint of improvement and be the core source of all malware and drive by infections on the web?

      • I think the parent has a good argument, maybe just no stated in the best of terms.

        However, on the Dart site it says that Dartium, the DartVM enabled version of Chrome, will be one of the major focuses of the Dart team. Somehow, I have a sinking feeling that maybe, just maybe, Dart and NaCL are going to become *major* line items for ChromeOS and Chromebooks. Much like how ActiveX and VBScript became pretty important pillars in Microsoft's platform.

        So while on the face of it, it sounds like a shrill. It ac

    • by knarf (34928)

      You distrust a programming language? Why? The source is available so instead of loathing and distrusting you could download and check. If it turns out there are no small Googoloompas hiding in there you could use it, just like you might use products related to other companies who have behaved in less desirable manners.

      • He who rides a tiger is afraid to dismount

      • by dwater (72834)

        Ah, sure, the source is available, but what about the source of the compiler what was used to compile it? If you can't get the source of the original compiler, the only recourse is to actually check the output of the compiler - I suppose you could also *de*compile the compiler and check *that* source too.

    • by SoupGuru (723634)

      I still trust them a hell of a lot more than I do the other big players in technology.

    • If this were Microsoft, then they would wait until they had a critical mass of users, and then start forgetting to fix bugs for anything other than Chrome. But this isn't Microsoft, so that would NEVER happen. Right?

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Yay, another web programming language to learn.

    Sigh...

    • I was thinking about writing a JavaScript to CIL to use Mono to back JS: the engine would produce CIL that loads into a CIL runtime, along with a support library that connects to the DOM. Then: WEBCIL-Python.

      • by SpzToid (869795)

        Yes. Back in the day we had FORTRAN and we liked it. Especially punching the cards and waiting for everything to come back.

        Now would you mind stepping over and on to the sidewalk so I can water that patch of grass you're standing on?

        • by SpzToid (869795)

          Sorry, replying to my own post, because I meant to reply to the AC GP in my previous post. I hit the wrong message in the thread to reply to.

    • Tons of server based web programming languages. But, as far as I know there is only one, widely used, language for programs that run on the client browser.

  • reducing overall JavaScript output up to 40%

    Err... what?

    • by robmv (855035)

      Initial versions generanted big JavaScript files using dart2js, there have been a lot of work optimizing that

    • by AC-x (735297)

      It reduces the size of the Dart to JS compiled output by 40% compared to previous versions.

  • While many of the critics of Dart continue to bash it, it is amazing how they like a lot C compilers outputting JavaScript, What is wrong about dart2js that is treated bad in comparison to emscripten and similar tools? Probably they should explain better that they oppose to a new VM (opposing at the same time to NaCl), but a new language with a transpiler, Why different treatments to different compilers that do the same?

  • How is Dart cross browser? It only runs in Chrome. Does having a cross compiler to JS make it cross browser? That'd make any language cross browser, which is to stretch the definition to the point of meaninglessness.

    Javascript isn't rocket science to use. You've just got to put in the effort to read a couple books to understand that it requires different design strategies from other OO languages. The scoping, prototypes, and events are actually really nice if you bother to learn how to use them properly.

    • by Alarash (746254)
      I'm a network engineer, and I do some web development as a hobby to understand better the application layers and all that payload I transport on the wires.. I hate Javascript because I find it hard to debug in a browser. I like having a proper IDE to help me debug my code. If then they convert that code to JS and it works the same, it works for me. I'm not a professional developer so maybe the ones who are should write in JS directly, but my experience is that JS is not a great language because of the debug
      • by Nixoloco (675549)
        If you haven't tried it, you should try Firebug. It helps debugging Javascript in the browser quite a bit.
      • Chrome has the best debugger I have seen. I find easier to debug Javascript code than Java code on Eclipse. It is one of the reasons I don`t like TypeScript and its similars, they compile down to Javascript which makes harder to debug the original code because the debugger only sees the Javascript code.

        • by dtfinch (661405) *

          I never found Typescript's output to be that hard to read, since it preserves comments and changes the code very little apart from rewriting class definitions.

          You can enable source maps, which the Firefox/Chrome debuggers can use to show you the original code when debugging compiled code. And some minifiers like UglifyJS can transform source maps to continue working after minifying.

    • by robmv (855035)

      Javascript isn't rocket science to use. You've just got to put in the effort to read a couple books to understand that it requires different design strategies from other OO languages. The scoping, prototypes, and events are actually really nice if you bother to learn how to use them properly.

      I don't hate JavaScript, but I wish it started to have a real and modern API. DOM objects and a few basic types is not constructive, everyone is adding external libraries to do simple things, using different libraries so you don't have a base API to learn. I am not talking DOM manipulation level APIs like jQuery, but about a good collections, async, crypto, etc APIs. JavaScript core available APIs is a mix of bad basic types (like only the Number type for every numeric value) and HTML spec APIs every one of

    • Re:Cross browser? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by slack_justyb (862874) on Thursday November 14, 2013 @11:59AM (#45423015)

      I think your arguments are pretty valid and I am by no stretch of the imagination a pro-Dart guy, but I believe that the "cross browser" claim comes from the olden days of cross platform languages. C/C++ had (has, just in case the past tense is a really bad choice) cross platform compilers they take C/C++ code and compile it to a language that the target platform understands. For example, C to ARM/x86/amd64/MIPS... compilers.

      So my guess here, and it is just a guess, is that Google is using the same rationale to justify calling this a "cross browser" language, because the compiler can turn Dart into a language that can be understood by other browsers, much like a C compiler can compile into different paltforms. Arguments about if that is an accurate equation are totally justified and most likely will ensue hereafter. I'm just tossing up a guess as to why Google felt like that was an accurate statement.

    • Re:Cross browser? (Score:4, Informative)

      by slim (1652) <{john} {at} {hartnup.net}> on Thursday November 14, 2013 @12:12PM (#45423143) Homepage

      Any language that cross-compiles to JS is cross-browser. Correct.

  • How much effort would it take to create a plug-in for FF and/or i.e. that contained the dart vm?
    Would it get you anything? What would the issues be?

    • Don't know about the coding side of it, but I would guess it to be pretty straight-forward process since the VM is open sourced. I think the better question would be how much political effort would it take to get a plug-in for FF and/or IE into the hands of people? Pure JavaScript folk are pretty damn hard-core about their language and Dart to them just seems like a solution to a non-existent problem. Besides, with Dart being a plug-in, you'd have websites once again going into the "check for plug-ins" h
  • Why don't they just put the python runtime sandboxed? Why create a new language? Why not Lua or Ruby? Why not all of them so I can choose? All these languages have run-times on most major platforms (except iOS because, you know, Apple). Can't each browser just come up with a way to sandbox the language and provide the hooks to the DOM?

    But really, the main problem isn't even javascript. The REAL problem is the DOM, it sucks manipulating it at run-time. The DOM was made to build documents, not applications. W

    • by Lisandro (799651)

      Much, much agreed. I would *love* to see Lua on a browser. It is Python after a marahton diet.

  • Burned by GWT (Score:5, Insightful)

    by smist08 (1059006) on Thursday November 14, 2013 @12:19PM (#45423237)
    After being burned by Google abandoning GWT, I would worry about adopting Dart. Won't Google just lose interest and abandon it after a year or two. Won't we just see a new project start up almost immediately for some newer better web language? Not sure I'd jump in on this one.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      *Citation needed

      At a quick glance, it looks to me like there was a GWT release just today...

      • Re:Burned by GWT (Score:5, Insightful)

        by slack_justyb (862874) on Thursday November 14, 2013 @03:28PM (#45425090)

        What? Do you mean 2.6.0 RC1? 2.6 looks to be more of a clean up of the 2.5.1 stuff rather than anything new. If anything the main thing that 2.6 brings is that they brought Java 7 into the picture. I wouldn't say that Google *has* abandon GWT, but they sure are making the common gestures of getting ready for a good old fashion keelhauling. [blogspot.com]

        Now for just my opinion, GWT sucks. It's a messy looking API and lacks a ton of flexibility. For example, trying to implement custom UI for your web page is painful and totally unpleasant. More so than say making the same customer UI in Java Swing (which is pretty painful in of itself). In my opinion, and you my mod me down for it, is that anything that is worst to do in (insert framework here) than it is in Java should not exist.

        • If you find Swing painful your comment about GWT loses quite a bit of credibility.
          And your last sentence coins it, lol. You find Swing the most difficult "framework"? (Hint, it is no framework, it is a library) Sorry that is a total laugh ...

          • Well I work with Java all the time and I find Swing great to use, but when I want to build my own user interface elements, then yes, I find it very painful indeed. I've done custom widgets in Cario/GTK, .NET, and even for Android; and Swing is pretty up there for the bar that needs to be crossed to have a custom widget. I don't find Swing all that difficult to use at face value but just mucking about AWT or even SWT is far better than trying to muck around and build custom GUIs in Swing.

            In that respect, G

            • I guess if someone likes GWT or not is a matter of taste. I'm quite content with it, however I wished it would use less tables and more divs.
              I like the API of it, but I never made really "custom" widgets. However there is a quite good tutorial how to do that. I did not asume it is difficult, same for Swing, there are lots of tutorials how to make your own widgets.

              OTOH most of the time it is more efficient to write your own look and feel instead.

              Well that JSR for an Swing based Application Framework, was a o

          • Nope wait, wait!! That last reply, the JSR thing not correct. I'll totally admit wrong when wrong and JSR 296 isn't Swing itself but the aborted effort to build the application framework a while back. My bad, got that wrong. All shit tossing about that you want totally justified. That is all.

    • Since when is GWT abandoned?

    • GWT has been open sourced. I am hopeful that this can only be a good thing. There is still at least as much activity on the project as when it was not open source. The 2.6.0 RC1 release notes [gwtproject.org] look great. Just recently a Google employee was working on a bug [google.com] I was tracking. And there's the GWT Create [gwtcreate.com] conference coming up.

      I was worried about GWT when I saw Dart coming up and getting attention, because I've enjoyed writing apps in GWT, and would like it to continue to be an option when we're scoping new project

  • If you don't like Dart, that's fine. But I am seeing a lot of posts that are just BS.

    1) Too many web languages.

    - There is only one language that is commonly used for apps that run in the client browser - ONE!

    2) Google sucks.

    - I defy to name some problem with google that does not apply to Microsoft, or Apple. Privacy? Are you kidding? Dropping products? Are you kidding? At least google is not pulling countless patent trolling scams. And google does not do the vendor lock-in scams like Apple, or Microsoft.

    3)

  • DartEditor uses Java and is windoze only? WTF. Nope.

    • by bug_hunter (32923)

      I can't speak to if DartEditor uses Java (and if it does, maybe it just bundles a stand alone bundled JRE?) but it works on most flavours of Windows, Mac and Linux
      https://www.dartlang.org/tools/editor/ [dartlang.org]

      I'm sure Google have done the occasional Windows only thing, but in general it's really not their style.

  • by Hypotensive (2836435) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:40AM (#45431123)
    What I find hilarious is that the Dart language website (dartlang.org) actually requires JavaScript to work.
    • by dwater (72834)

      ...even if you use their dart-capable browser?

      • Well, after reading further I find that Dart compiles down to JavaScript in any case, presumably even in the Dart-capable browser, which makes it about as useful as a fifth wheel.

        Also of note is this:

        if (1) {
        // this will be executed in JavaScript and other sane languages
        } else {
        // this will be executed in Dart
        }

        Got to love it when those language designers have such hubris that they think they can do the exact opposite of what everyone else in the world is used to.

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