Crockford on JSMin and Obfuscation

0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 Buffer 0 LinkedIn 0 0 Flares ×

Douglas Crockford knows a thing or two about compressing JavaScript. He wrote JSMin which IMHO is the simplest and fastest JavaScript minifer out there today. Coupled with his lint checker JSLint you’ve got two really good tools to write good solid code. I used JSMin to optimize digg.com’s homepage a few weeks back. As more and more AJAX apps start to take advantage of JavaScript the size and footprint grows dramatically. Even more so when folks import the various AJAX toolkits as a starting point. This means that tools like JSMin become a required part of the build/deploy process for those that are serious about optimizing end-user experience. There are other excellent minifer tools out there including Alex’s ShrinkSafe which is based on Rhino. ShrinkSafe takes an aggressive approach to not modifying the API’s as it uses a real JavaScript compiler/run-time to shrink the code. This is important when you don’t want your public API to change as is true for any JavaScript toolkit developer. Crockford makes the point that obfuscation is really just a small hurdle and any serious programmer, given time can extract the useful bits. This is especially true for JavaScript where no matter how much mangling of the code is done before it’s sent to the browser it’s still sent in plain text. So it’s trivial to attach a debugger like Venkman and walk through each line of code. Glad to see Douglas putting focus back on JavaScript as noted by his many recent updates to JSLint and now his first blog entry on the Y! UI blog. I’d also guess that Yahoo’s focus on JSON for their REST api’s is in part due to Doug joining them.

ref: Minification v Obfuscation ยป Yahoo! User Interface Blog

0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Google+ 0 Buffer 0 LinkedIn 0 0 Flares ×
Kevin Henrikson

Kevin Henrikson

VP of Engineering / Co-Founder at Acompli
Kevin Henrikson is currently leading engineering for Acompli in San Francisco. Previously he was an Entrepreneur-in-Residence for Redpoint Ventures, a venture capital firm for early stage technology companies.
Kevin Henrikson

@KevinHenrikson

VP of Engineering / Co-Founder @acompli
RT @levnaginsky: Can't believe I didn't discover it before - @acompli is PERFECT for Microsoft Exchange email. - 13 hours ago
Kevin Henrikson
Kevin Henrikson