2014-07-24

Dart, what do we think about it?


yeah, about that...

Google's attempt to improve on Javascript and get a server-side language at the same time.
I have always wanted something else to thrive over javascript, and tried many good options like coffeescript or opal. Most of them are really good and easy to use as long as everything is correct.
Sadly that is not what happens. The bug fixing is a vital phase of software development, and in this is the problem with all the languages that compile to javascript.
Fixing the code is already hard enough as it is, imagine if you have to debug an auto-generated code in a language you possibly don't master.
For this reason I never adopted any of those for my development projects, and that is why dart quickly got my attention when they announced the dart VM embedded in chrome (ok, it is dartium, a branch of chromium but still counts).

Not just that, it is also a very flexible language where types are recommended but not enforced.
syntax is a bit outdated, they opted for the java style to make developers feel comfortable. With languages like ruby and python getting more and more users everyday I am not sure it was the best decision.
Although I have to agree, every developer feels familiar to a language with all the semi colons, curly brackets shenanigans that resembles java.

They have also done a good job in their package system, the pub. It feels just the same as using ruby gems.

Dart start is quite close to Sinatra, it is still lacking the template rendering, but it s a good start (pun unintended)

IDE. Ah, the IDE... why always Eclipse google?
It is so bad, rebuilds workspace every other minute, hangs all the time.
In fact, it hangs so much, my most used terminal command is "killall dart".
Seriously, why Eclipse again?

Overall it is good and I hope it works out.
Being a google product, I believe it will be forced upon us like google+ anyway, so why not to make the best of it and enjoy all the benefits?