OSCON: JavaScript Boot Camp

This morning I attended Amy Hoy’s JavaScript Boot Camp tutorial. The slides should be available online shortly at Amy’s website – I’ll update this post once she publishes them. She provided a good overview of JavaScript as a language, some of the issues with the various implementations, how to debug it and some of the libraries available for use. Updated: The slides are located here. Unfortunately, the material was a little too introductory for me, I thought she’d spend less time on the JavaScript basics and more on the intermediate/advanced techniques of the language and libraries. I guess I misunderstood what I had signed-up for. Anyway, she started out with the history of the JavaScript language (briefly mentioning the LiveScript name … which Rich Kilmer quizzed me on at my RJS talk) and the ECMAScript process which spawned several different releases of JavaScript – basically most browsers implement JavaScript 1.5 with the exception of Firefox which gives us JavaScript 1.6. At this point we lost power to everything but the projector, but Amy took it in stride and continued her presentation. She went through the syntax of the JavaScript language, keywords, etc. After getting through the language quirks, she discussed how to use FireBug and the JavaScript shell to test and debug your JavaScript code. Some of the libraries which were mentioned include: JSON, MochiKit, Script.aculo.us, moo.fx, Behavior, and Prototype. When asked for her favorite JavaScript related sites she gave her top three: