Department of Informatics

UiB to host a JavaScript language committee meeting

Department of Informatics will host the 97th Plenary Meeting of Technical Committee 39 of ECMA International, the standardizing body for the JavaScript programming language.


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JavaScript is a programming language used by 2.3 million developers in their daily work or hobby projects. It has been a popular choice for many projects due to its accessibility to programmers of all skill levels.

Like many other programming languages, JavaScript has an official standard, which gives an exact definition of what the language is and which features it has. The standardizing body behind the JavaScript standard is Ecma International (formely ECMA - European Computer Manufacturers Association), which is a nonprofit standardization organization for information and communication systems.

The Department of Informatics is a member of the JavaScript standardization committee, and will host the committee's 97th Plenary Meeting this July.

"The fact that Department of Informatics is a member of the JavaScript committee means that we can affect the design of this very popular programming language", says Mikhail Barash, a researcher at Bergen Language Design Laboratory (BLDL), which focuses on studying the principles of programming languages. "Members of BLDL Magne Haveraaen and Jaakko Järvi have successfully served on committees for the Fortran and C++ programming languages, and many of their ideas have been incorporated into those languages. Two years ago we added JavaScript to our portfolio, and this year we will be the host of a plenary meeting of the language committee. This will open unique collaboration opportunities", continues Mikhail, who works on evolution of JavaScript in BLDL.

The work of the JavaScript committee is not new for the Informatics students: several of them participated in a project on implementing a new feature in JavaScript and integrating it in the Mozilla Firefox browser. The students were co-supervised by Yulia Startsev, a former chair of the committee. "I am curious to learn from the students and what they discover, as I am sure they will become experts in parts of the [JavaScript language] specification that are new to me", said Yulia during that project.

The plenary meeting will be held during 11-13 July 2023 at VilVite. While the meeting itself is by invitation only, there will be a scientific workshop with Bergen Language Design Laboratory on Tuesday 11.7.2023. This event is open to the public.