[Guest Comment from Shane Steinert-Threlkeld]
A lot of developers of so-called Rich Internet Applications, from widgets to online versions of desktop programs such as word processors, are very excited about this new release because it should make make it easier to just pull different nuggets of pre-produced code into their new Web-based services.
The biggest change is the implementation of true class-based inheritance, where new sets of programming objects with similar structure and behavior derive much of their functionality from previous classes of objects.
This is a change that people have been wanting for some time: You don’t have to build new combinations of data, procedures and uniqueness, for each object you might want to be used.
Let’s hope that the release will be backwards-compatible, allowing prototypal inheritance, at least, to survive.
And programmers to stay off crutches.
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld is a student of math, computer science, and philosophy at Johns Hopkins University. He is also a semi-professional web developer and consultant with his own opinions.