My opinion.

Golly, I love this job.

Okay, before you read any further, go read the tagline of this blog. In case you're reading it through RSS, I'll paste it here: "This is the personal blog of Chris Wilson, Platform Architect of the Internet Explorer Platform team at Microsoft (and ex-Group Program Manager)." Underscore that "personal" bit.

Okay, now go read the last line of the first paragraph of my last post. Again, for your convenience: “Consider the rest of this post to be only my opinion, because I haven't even run it by the other people on the team.” Consider that to be true of this post as well. (This post, too, has not been run past anyone here.)

Now we've established that this blog, and the last post as well as this one, are just me talking, and not the "Voice of Microsoft" (said in your best James Earl Jones voice).

So, hmm. "Open letter to Chris Wilson." "Mozilla, Microsoft drawing sabers over next JavaScript." "We can't afford another browser war." (I'm with ya there.) Front page of Slashdot. And so on. Does anyone wonder why I don't post so often on my own blog?

Brendan, my post was my opinion, and (I thought) clearly labelled as such. Sorry you take it personally, and you should feel free to disagree with my opinion. Please don't call me a liar, though - or at least, credit me with enough intelligence to make my own lies up, and not simply parrot those of others. In my opinion, the current ECMAScript 4 proposal would be disruptive to the web ecosystem, and I don’t think the priorities driving its evolution have been placed where I would place them. (E.g., as I said before, I’d like to see domain security addressed in the core language.) That said, it’s my opinion.

When I made a reference to "shouting down dissent," I thought again that I was being clear that I was referring more to the string of blog comments made by you and others immediately to any blog post that seemed to question the righteousness of the current ES4 proposal, than to functioning of the TG-1. The response to this post, and others in the last day or so, doesn’t make me want to retract that. I was not referring to actual shouting in TG-1 meetings - I’d have to agree with your characterization of “vigorous debate” - though I think you seem a mite personally hostile to Microsoft. That's a personal-interaction observation, though, and not reflected in minutes, and therefore not worth much.

However, please do not EVER characterize me personally as pushing a proprietary language or platform over open standards based ones, unless you have proof of such action (which you do not, because I am not). I gave my opinion about ES4, not about Javascript as a long-term language for the web; I have no personal interest in pushing C# (a language in which, BTW, I've never considered myself a proficient programmer) or some "new invention" language in place of Javascript, and I've yet to hear anyone in Microsoft give a solid enough scenario for such a thing that it changes my professional opinion to be in support of C# in place of Javascript either. It's a shame that the last couple of days of posting, yours included, have presumed that I have any interest in a language different than Javascript; my opinion is that ES4 is becoming a huge new language but claiming to be just an update on to the already-well-known Javascript language, not that Javascript is the wrong language.   (Oh, and there is no secret "alternate language" proposal that I'm aware of; ideally, I'd like to see different priorities addressed in ES4.)

I think ECMAScript can evolve more cautiously (than the large-scale language changes in ES4) and have that be a better thing for the web, considering how it deploys in the ecosystem. That would only work, though, if we're working together.  If you truly believe that Silverlight (and by this I must presume you really mean C# in the Silverlight-hosted VM) will take over because of careful evolution of Javascript would take too long, then I suggest you follow the path I recommended in the original post in the IEBlog - make a new proprietary language, call it something different, and if it's that much better then it will get adoption. Proprietary can always evolve faster than openly designed, consensus -driven industry standards. Regardless, though, I have no intent of "helping Microsoft stall improvements to JS while they aggressively evolve C# and its runtimes" - in fact, I personally think those are orthogonal issues, and Javascript's current lack of strong typing, say, doesn't help or hurt C# adoption. I expect you have a different opinion, given your posts, and I simply respectfully disagree. I think (again, personally) that Javascript has a lot more going for it in the web ecosystem, and I don't personally see C# pushing it out of the way.

Brendan, you also said (in comments on your own blog post that I 'reversed the logic of ScreamingMonkey to try to "prove" that ES4 requires a new VM.'

No, I never tried to "prove" that ES4 requires a new VM. I said 1) ScreamingMonkey pushes a new VM into IE, and will cause ES4 scripts to not be run in the same VM as ES3, within IE. (True, yes? Please tell me if I'm wrong here, as I'm (obviously) not as intimately familiar with ScreamingMonkey as you are.) And I also said 2) in my opinion, ES4 VM compatibility with ES3 (in perf characteristics in particular, but I'm betting in other ways as well) will likely cause interop problems. I understand your ideal is that an ES4 VM ought to be able to run ES3 scripts; I expressed skepticism this will happen, given the scope of changes to the language in ES4. Again, my opinion.

You said "To prove this, I'll make a promise: if Microsoft truly embraces ES4 and ships it in an IE beta, I'll put ScreamingMonkey on hiatus."  I don’t care personally if you put ScreamingMonkey on hiatus or not. I think it’s self-defeating, personally - if it does ship and gets uptake, it would cause compat problems for us to take over handling ES4 in our own VM later. It's kinda saying you expect Microsoft can't to come up with an interoperable implementation of the future Javascript standard.

Personally, I think you'd have been better served following my personal one-on-one advice to you back in March at SXSW - try to work WITH the Microsoft Script guys, because they are neither crazy nor trying to obstruct progressing Javascript to a good, powerful, competitive-with-other-modern-languages future. They may have different ideas of how big a step you can take at a time, but none of us are looking to stagnate Javascript, as you have claimed. I'd like to see more than "deferred JScript maintenance and ES3 spec-polishing," despite what you think.

I think thus far you have preferred not to follow that advice. I'd prefer not to have a "split" in TG-1; I'd prefer that we evolve Javascript in a way that will work for more of the web (browsers, developers, et al) at the same time. Perhaps instead of thinking that Microsoft has to lose, you should think about how we could all win.