Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Web Programming Languages: JavaScript, Java

JavaScript is not Java
JavaScript and Java are popular web programming languages that are often a point of confusion. Most think that JavaScript is the same as Java or it is a version of Java programming. However, despite their names, JavaScript and Java are different programming languages. So, let us clear up Java and JavaScript difference.

JavaScript Is NOT Java

The common misconception is caused with the prefix -Java. However, JavaScript is not Java and not related to Java technology. The strategy behind choosing JavaScript as a final name probably has to do with marketing.


JavaScript was originally developed by Brendan Eich of Netscape under the name Mocha, which was later renamed to LiveScript, and finally to JavaScript. LiveScript was the official name for the language when it first shipped in beta releases of Netscape Navigator 2.0 in September 1995, but it was renamed JavaScript in a joint announcement with Sun Microsystems on December 4, 1995 when it was deployed in the Netscape browser version 2.0B3.

The change of name from LiveScript to JavaScript roughly coincided with Netscape adding support for Java technology in its Netscape Navigator web browser. The final choice of name caused confusion, giving the impression that the language was a spin-off of the Java programming language, and the choice has been characterized by many as a marketing ploy by Netscape to give JavaScript the cachet of what was then the hot new web-programming language. It has also been claimed that the language's name is the result of a co-marketing deal between Netscape and Sun, in exchange for Netscape bundling Sun's Java runtime with their then-dominant browser.

JavaScript & Java Difference

JavaScript was developed at Netscape. Java was developed at Sun Microsystems. The JavaScript was originally called Mocha and LiveScript. Java was originally called Oak. JavaScript syntax was influenced by programming language C. Java syntax comes from C and C++.

Although both have similarities, JavaScript is not Java. The JavaScript principles are taken from web programming languages the Self and Scheme. JavaScript is an interpreted computer programming language implemented as part of web browsers.
JavaScript is a cross-platform, object-oriented scripting language. JavaScript is a small, lightweight language; it is not useful as a standalone language, but is designed for easy embedding in other products and applications, such as web browsers. JavaScript and Java are similar in some ways but fundamentally different in some others. The JavaScript language resembles Java but does not have Java's static typing and strong type checking. JavaScript follows most Java expression syntax, naming conventions and basic control-flow constructs which was the reason why it was renamed from LiveScript to JavaScript. (source find more info on JavaScript vs Java differences in Details of the Object Model)

Java is a general-purpose, class-based, object-oriented programming language. Javascript is used for front-end web development. Java can only be used as a back-end language. JavaScript is a scripting language and programming code that can be inserted into HTML and executed by all modern web browsers. Java doesn’t need a web browser to compile and execute like Javascript. Java creates applications that run in a virtual machine or browser while JavaScript runs only in a web browser. Java code needs to be compiled while JavaScript code is all in text. JavaScript and Java have different plug-ins. JavaScript is dynamic and weakly typed. Java has static typing and is strongly typed. Java is loaded from compiled bytecode. JavaScript is loaded as human-readable source code. Java is class-based. JavaScript is prototype-based.

JavaScript vs Java difference lies in the technology. JavaScript and Java are different web programming languages. JavaScript is not Java.

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