What is JavaScript, and why is it so important?

Hello learners!

Have you ever heard of JavaScript, an amazing programming language? Have you ever wondered why is it so important? Whatever the answer, yes or no, JavaScript is the most powerful and most popular language for web programming. Initially this was built for make websites alive. Today, JavaScript is not only a language which is running on web browsers, but also on the web servers or actually on any computer device which has a JavaScript Engine. This extension happens because of the recent introduction of Node.js.

What is JavaScript?

What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is a text-based script oriented language used for both front-end (client-side) and back-end (server-side) that allows you to develop websites more interactively. With the help of other core languages, HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) and CSS languages that give structure and style to the web pages, JavaScript gives web pages interactive elements, functions, events that improve the engagement with the users. Example to the usage of JavaScript is, you are reading this article with help of JavaScript.


JavaScript is built for the Netscape Navigator 2 in 1995 by Brendan Eich, one of a Netscape programmer. It was originally named Mocha, but quickly renamed to LiveScript and later, JavaScript. This was became the ECMA-262 standard later in 1997. Later Netscape handed JavaScript over to ECMA International Standards Organization, the Mozilla Foundation started to develop the JavaScript for their own web browser called Firefox. The table below shows how JavaScript was developed. (Source from Internet)

1995JavaScript was invented by Brendan Eich
1996Netscape 2 was released with JavaScript 1.0
1997JavaScript became an ECMA standard (ECMA-262)
1997ES1ECMAScript 1 was released
1997ES1IE 4 was the first browser to support ES1
1998ES2ECMAScript 2 was released
1998Netscape 42 was released with JavaScript 1.3
1999ES2IE 5 was the first browser to support ES2
1999ES3ECMAScript 3 was released
2000ES3IE 5.5 was the first browser to support ES3
2000Netscape 62 was released with JavaScript 1.5
2000Firefox 1 was released with JavaScript 1.5
2008ES4ECMAScript 4 was abandoned
2009ES5ECMAScript 5 was released
2011ES5IE 9 was the first browser to support ES5 *
2011ES5Firefox 4 was released with JavaScript 1.8.5
2012ES5Full support for ES5 in Safari 6
2012ES5Full support for ES5 in IE 10
2012ES5Full support for ES5 in Chrome 23
2013ES5Full support for ES5 in Firefox 21
2013ES5Full support for ES5 in Opera 15
2014ES5Full support for ES5 in all browsers
2015ES6ECMAScript 6 was released
2016ES6Full support for ES6 in Chrome 51
2016ES6Full support for ES6 in Opera 38
2016ES6Full support for ES6 in Edge 14
2016ES6Full support for ES6 in Safari 10
2015ES6Full support for ES6 in Firefox 52
2018ES6Full support for ES6 in all browsers **
History of ECMA versions

JavaScript vs Java

Java vs JavaScript

Most of people think, JavaScript and Java are the same or JavaScript developed by inspiring Java. Unfortunately those are completely wrong. Actually both have almost nothing in common. In other words those two languages are different.

The LiveScript to JavaScript name change came because Netscape and Sun Microsystems did a license agreement. Java was very popular at that time, so it was decided to name the new language as “JavaScript”. The language was then submitted to standardization to ECMA. By that time, Netscape didn’t allow the use of the “JavaScript” name, so the standardized language is named ECMAScript. JavaScript isn’t an open name. Actually it is currently a trademark of Oracle (formerly Sun Microsystems)

It was all within six months from May till December (1995) that it was Mocha and then LiveScript. And then in early December, Netscape and Sun did a license agreement and it became JavaScript. And the idea was to make it a complementary scripting language to go with Java, with the compiled language.

Brendan Eich

What makes JavaScript so popular?

Nearly every computing device that we use day-today has the massive use of JavaScript: Android, IPhone, MacOS, Windows, Linux and recent technology Smart TVs. The significant reasons why JavaScript became universally adopted for web development include following :

  • This can be used for both front-end and back-end developments
  • Supported for almost all devices
  • It doesn’t require special environments
  • Open standards and it has well documented documents
  • Works with Document Object Model (DOM)
  • It serves everyone from beginners to intermediate and even advanced programmers
  • Wide range of frameworks and libraries to help building complex applications
  • Frequently update

What is JavaScript used for?

Modern universe, JavaScript is used for everything, thanks to the introduction of Node.js. Regardless of how you avoid it, this amazing technology roads robust software for companies worldwide. In addition, companies like LinkedIn and Medium use it to create platforms for community to access their services.

JavaScript can be used to implement different kinds of software products such as Computer Games, CMS systems, ERP systems and even technologies like Blockchain and computer vision. Let’s list some applications which was used JavaScript for the better understanding.

  • Facebook
  • Google
  • Google Doc, Google Sheets, Google Presentation
  • Netflix
  • Instagram
  • Khan Academy
  • Dropbox
  • Paypal
  • Youtube
  • Upwork
  • Freelancer

JavaScript Frameworks

If you are familiar with JavaScript then you should make aware of JavaScript Frameworks. Frameworks provide developers with the basic foundation necessary for building JavaScript powered applications. Every framework has own mechanism for problem solving. This saves developers the effort of starting from scratch by utilizing a functional base to get things rolling.

Frameworks, this base includes a collection of code libraries. The libraries code that elicits specific functionality for the specific type of app you may be working on. So the framework defines the structure of the entire application.

Each JavaScript framework serves a different purpose. Building web applications or websites from start to end can take quite a bit of work. In this case JavaScript frameworks take advantage of the fact that every website and web application have common features and functionalities.

Let’s see some examples of modern most popular JavaScript frameworks.

  • AngularJS
  • ReactJS
  • Node.js
  • Vue.js
  • Ember.js
  • Nest.js
  • NextJS
  • JQuery
  • Backbone.js
  • Ember

You can compare two of most popular JavaScript frameworks, Angular vs React by Don Rukshan.

Impact to the Job Market

Job Market

JavaScript is a must for professionals interested in web developments. Nearly one-third of all programming related job listing on sites like indeed, look for JavaScript proficiency. The global market boasts around 14 million JavaScript Developers.

JavaScript Developers need to be experts in the stage of designing, testing and implementation of software using JavaScript. So if you are wondering to start your carrier as a JavaScript Developer, here are a few ideas for you to get started.JavaScript Developer is a booming career and those looking to start the career in JavaScript, you can try out following job roles.

  • Front-end Developer
  • Back-end Developer
  • Full-stack Developer
  • Quality Assurance Automation Specialist
  • Tech-lead


JavaScript is a must in the IT industry. Knowing one or more than one JavaScript framework will gain his/ her career. As the demand for the JavaScript professionals keeps skyrocketing and learning can be your key to building a rewarding and high-paying career with excellent growth potential. Alternatively you can join to a tech-startup company and improve JavaScript skills while you are doing your higher studies.

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