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Day Two Begins at The Ajax Experience

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Tuesday morning here in Boston started off with a keynote by Brendan Eich, CTO of Mozilla and creator of JavaScript. The title of the session was “Faster than Light JavaScript”, where Brendan discussed JIT compilation of JavaScript in the browser and the performance gains we can expect to see in the future. In particular, a new JavaScript engine code-named “TraceMonkey”, based on the SpiderMonkey interpreter and the Tamarin-Tracing VM, is set to be released with an future version of Firefox.

Read more about TraceMonkey here

TraceMonkey is one of many current JavaScript engines, listed below:

  1. JavaScriptCore: The engine that powers Safari/WebKit (up until Safari 3.1).
  2. SquirrelFish: The engine used by Safari 4.0
  3. V8: The engine used by Google Chrome.
  4. SpiderMonkey: The engine that powers Firefox (up to, and including, Firefox 3.0).
  5. TraceMonkey: The engine that will power Firefox 3.1 and newer (currently in nightlies, but disabled by default).
  6. Futhark: The engine used in Opera 9.5 and newer.
  7. IE JScript: The engine that powers Internet Explorer.

John Resig wrote a good post earlier this month covering JavaScript performance in these engines, read it here.