Why Google released Closure Tools

Why Google released Closure Tools

Summary: Anything Google can do to make Javascript more valuable to you is in its best interests, and the tools described on its blog today are pretty marvelous.



The release of Closure Tools by Google under an open source license is all about putting more muscle behind Javascript, whose underlying Java language is under a cloud due to the Oracle-Sun merger.

Web developers face a choice between using Javascript and the Microsoft AJAX Library, part of .Net, in developing Web applications. Google would rather you use tools it depends on, its AJAX Library, and its Web Toolkit.

As C}Net's own Stephen Shankland notes today, Google has pushed Javascript to its limits in GMail and  Google Docs, and developed its Chrome browser in part so Javascript could run faster. Google likes Javascript like Cookie Monster (above, from yesterday's Google home page) likes cookies.

Anything Google can do to make Javascript more valuable to you is in its best interests, and the tools described on its blog today are pretty marvelous.

  • Closure Compiler is a Javascript optimizer that packs code tighter than your best friend's jeans.
  • Closure Library is a Javascript library with low-level utilities and high-level widgets that work on a wide variety of browsers and can be called on as-needed.
  • Closure Templates are implemented for both Javascript and Java, so they can be called from clients or servers.

It is indeed, as one wag put it, a Javascript candy store. It wants to be your favorite candy store. It wants to be your only candy store. No Pepsi, Coke.

Topics: Open Source, Google, Software Development

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  • another nail in M$ coffin

    It seems Google is second to FSF to send M$ to its grave.
    Linux Geek
    • You are an idiot....

      First of all did you even read the article...
      Not only the article makes no sense(like your idiotic rant aggainst MS) but it contains several errors.

      AJAX is javascript and is not unique to MS.

      Javascript IS NOT java bolth are different languages.

      Javascript is insecure... and google wants us to depend on it more?... I instead think we should say NO to javascript in most cases.

      PS: I wont use chrome untill I see an option to use a whitelist for Javascript... but since Google wants us to use the inherently insecurem Javascript...
      • Javascript is pain in the rear

        Why would anyone like to code in Javascript at the client side and then be forced to use another language at the server while .Net and Java both allow coders to use just one language for both sides?
        • .Net isn't a standard, though.

          Many browsers and computing environments don't have it.
      • That much is obvious

        The part were you you said "You are an idiot"

        That is Linux Geek. The more he says that, the more foolish he looks.

        Maybe that is why he was voted "Court Jester of ZDNet"! :)
        • Well I was not execting more from...

          Stallman's little cultist.

          That guy (Linux Geek) embarasse both Geek and Linux users every where.
  • Anything to get away from M$ dependency

    No web developer should be using IE-specific crap in this century. I can't wait until we have open standards replacements for every proprietary web format. We need to eliminate IE extensions, Flash, Silverlight, and all the rest. There need to be standards for marking up any thing we can think of without resorting to proprietary or licensed extensions of any kind. Any browser should be able to display what we code precisely as we coded it. I wish we could light a fire under the W3C folks and get something usable sooner, rather than later. I hated reading that video probably wasn't going to be included in the first version of HTML5. Come on guys, what site doesn't need animated images?
    • Guess what?

      My current default test browser for everything ASP.NET is firefox...

      ASP.Net is NOT IE specific.
  • JavaScript and Java are not the same

    "...Javascript, whose underlying Java language is under a cloud..."

    JavaScript and Java are two different technologies. Yes, JavaScript was initially developed as a way to script Java applets, but that's just a very small part of what we call JavaScript.

    Rhino is the only JavaScript interpreter I know of that is written in Java. The others are written in C or C++.

    So JavaScript and Java are basically separate and unrelated technologies, although they can work together in some cases. The only reason we call it JavaScript is legacy: it was originally developed to control Java applets inside an HTML page.
  • RE: Why Google released Closure Tools

    If Google actually liked JavaScript so much, they would support it server-side by supporting one of the many endeavors going on, or creating their own. But they don't. Almost none of their Google Data API's are offered in JavaScript. Google's love is for Python, and their official support is for Java and .NET because of the developer community.

    Google's apparent love for JavaScript is an evil born of necessity. The lingua franca of Web browsers is JavaScript, due to ancient decisions made by Netscape. We're all just forced to live with it now, and Closure was something Google was forced into developing, so they could control the shared JavaScript libraries they used internally, and not rely on a hodgepodge of other libraries floating around.

    Plus, Java isn't really even underlying JavaScript as the "whose underlying Java language" statement implies. JavaScript simply adopted most of Java's syntax to make developers feel comfortable, but the capabilities it offers, the way it runs, and almost everything about it is different. Syntax doesn't make the language.

    And finally, as to WHY Google released Closure, yes you're right, it's continuing the browser performance race that they started with the release of Chrome, allowing the web browser to be a viable alternative to an operating system--Netscape's age-old vision reborn. And for that to be realistic, all the difficult aspects of programming in JavaScript need to be made easier by putting it under a unified un-confusing banner so developers don't have to choose from dozens of semi-supported/semi-mature JavaScript libraries each time they start a new project.
  • No link between Java and Javascript...dumbass.

    Poor and very opportunistic article. I hope you get fired.
    • Actually, it is YOU, that does not understand the relationship between Java

      and JavaScript. The article is correct.
      • u r a serious moron - JavaScript is unrelated to java lang


        u r a technical illiterate.

        Shut up, stop wasting people's time with your ignorant & stupid comments.

        People like u should be banned from cyberspace.

        U r, intellectually speaking, garbage wrapped in skin.

        JavaScript has nothing to do with Java Lang.

        Even the most retarded script kiddy would know that.

        stop wasting valueable oxygen by breathing.
        • It would NOT hurt to be civilized.

          Insults tell more about yourself, no matter how stupid a post you reply to.
  • Google doesn't care about Javascript...

    As much as they care about playing with OFFICE TOYS HAHAHA! Im clever!

    All Rich Internet Applications should be made with Microsoft SILVERLIGHT. Because everyone who matters has it and IT'S AWESOME!
    Lovesock Robinson
    • Oh, please. A phoney Loverock now?

      How un-original can people get?
    • Zune.net is Silverlight and it is amazing!

      As is http://memorabilia.hardrock.com/
    • Silverlight or..

      Java are good ideas.

      I would not trust Flash however, and even then annything that downloads and execute code is dangerous(yes... that's including your precious Silverlight).
  • Perfect for Google

    Javascript is a great way to introduce malware into a computer. Not worse than Active X mind you. They are both great entries for spyware.
    • actually it's worse IMO

      Because, unlike Active X, Javascript is cross-browser...

      However Active X does have IO access to the harddrive... ummm