Brendan Eich created JavaScript in 1995 while working at Netscape Communications Corporation. As the web gained popularity, a gradual demand for client-side scripting languages developed. Most Internet users were connected to a 28.8 kbps modem at the time, even when web pages were growing in size and complexity. Netscape began to think seriously about developing client-side scripting language early, at a cutting-edge time of technological innovation, to handle simple processing. Brendan Eich is the person who worked for Netscape at that time and began developing a scripting language named "Mocha", later named "LiveScript", for the release of Netscape Navigator 2 in 1995. He was fascinated by Java, Scheme, and Self. Netscape, for some time, made the best browser of that time and enjoyed market supremacy.

Purpose of JavaScript

When JavaScript first appeared in 1995, with effective use of handling some of the input validation that had previously been left over to server-side languages like Perl. Before that time, the server required a round-trip to determine whether a required field was left blank or an invalid value entered. Netscape Navigator wanted to change that with the introduction of JavaScript. The potential and ability to handle some necessary validation on the client was an exciting fresh feature when telephone modems were common and well known. The associated slow speeds turned every trip to the server into an exercise in patience.

More Details on JavaScript History

Later in 1995, as Microsoft rise-up to the competition with the threat the web created, the project Internet Explorer started in an all-out attempt to wrestle control of the emerging platform from Netscape.

Gradually Microsoft became a mortal threat, compelling Netscape with its Internet Explorer. Slowly, a standardization process started to develop to prevent Microsoft from gaining the power of the JavaScript language. Furthermore, they partnered with Sun to influence their shared interest in breaking the Microsoft monopoly.

Brendan Eich has assumed that Sun on board decided to surf the tidal wave of building up surrounding Java and position JavaScript as the companion language with Java, in a similar manner, Visual Basic was to C++. Netscape's Mocha was later named JavaScript and aimed to turn the web into a full-blown application platform.

Unfortunately for JavaScript, its early marketing position outlasted its usefulness and later became a mark on market acceptance because it emerged as a viable technology.

More on JavaScript

Since then, JavaScript has become a significant feature of every main web browser on the market. No longer bound to simple data validation, JavaScript now interacts and works with nearly all aspects of the browser window and its contents. JavaScript is recognized as a complete programming language that can handle complex calculations and interactions, including closures, anonymous (lambda) functions, and meta-programming. JavaScript has become such an essential element of the web that even alternative browsers, including those browsers that run on mobile phones and those designed for users with disabilities, support and maintain it. Even Microsoft, with its client-side scripting language called VBScript, ended up with its JavaScript implementation in Internet Explorer from its initial version.

The come-up of JavaScript from a simple, accessible input validator to a powerful programming language is marvelous. JavaScript is at once a straightforward but, at the same time, very complex language since it takes minutes to learn but years to master.